Sparks Fly From Steam Engine at Night
The night's pull that highlighted the steam traction engine, showcased six of the old machines. The engines had no problem pulling the sled down the track. We have seen lots of these engines at other festivals, however, we had never seen one under load at night. It was a great fireworks display.
When we were in Georgia working on our house near railroad tracks, we were told by neighbor Bill that his mom would shoo him inside whenever a train was coming down the track for fear flying sparks would set his hair on fire. During the age of steam locomotives, houses adjoining the tracks had tin roofs and no grass in their yard.
A tradition at the show is to invite all the kids in the stands to a tug-of-war with the steam engine. While the group with heels dug in were able to roll the engine backwards, a touch on the throttle and a puff of steam showed there was no match. Each child was given a slip of paper acknowledging how they had help pull the big old Reeves engine backwards.