Moreland Historical Days join history, entertainment

Moreland Historical Days join history, entertainment

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The more people learn about the history of their community, the more they will be able to pass along insight to how local communities were developed.

That is the belief of the Moreland Historical Society members, who hope to paint a vivid picture of the history of Moreland and the surrounding areas with each of the group’s events and endeavors.

One such opportunity will come when the Moreland Historical Days annual festival takes place Oct. 9-10 at Gail Miller’s Savage Run Farms, 854 James Road.

The event promises to be a fun-filled couple of days with plenty of activities and opportunities to learn some local history, and this year’s event happens to coincide with the annual Wayne County Farm Tour, so the Miller farm will serve as dual function during the weekend.

“For a smaller historical society, we have a very active and hard-working group of members who really take a great interest in restoring our historical sites and in keeping our history in our community alive for future generations,” MHS member Gail Miller said.

One of the main draws for Moreland Historical Days will be a gun display from the collection of Fred Donley, who owns an extensive number of rifles and guns including several Wayne County-made muzzle-loading rifles.

The collection is impressive, as is Donley’s knowledge of guns, rifles and local gun history.

“Fred has an amazing collection of guns, and when gun collectors see his name, they know it is going to be a quality, worthwhile show,” Miller said. “People will come from far away to talk to Fred and view his collection.”

Another addition to the show is a working Baker steam engine owned and operated by Ervin Hershberger, who will be in attendance on both days of the festival.

“The Baker steam engine he is bringing will be what is considered the Cadillac of steam engines,” Miller said. “It’s a fascinating look back into our history.”

Included in the show will be numerous other antique tractors and other pieces of antique farm equipment from the days of yore, including a wire baler, fanning mill, a corn sheller and several hit-and-miss engines.

The Moreland Historical Society will have a historical display set up featuring its many activities and projects that have taken place in the past, and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources will have a display along with the Wayne County Soil & Water Conservation District.

There also will be plenty of food and a full slate of entertainment. The Cedar Valley Cloggers will return to perform on Sunday at 2 p.m., and local favorite John Schmid will perform at 4:30 p.m. on both days. In addition, gospel singer Deb Gilson will be on stage at 1 p.m. on each day. New to the event this year will be a performance by the Gnat Boxers, who will present a square dance. There also will be a silent auction.

Barbecue chicken and pulled-pork dinners will be available throughout the event on Saturday, and there will be a light lunch of hot dogs and chips served on Sunday and homemade ice cream, which will allow visitors to dine on the farm and continue to enjoy all the activities and attractions.

It all adds up to a busy weekend, but a weekend the MHS members cherish.

“We are excited to be on the farm tour this year again because it adds a lot to the number of people coming into the event,” Miller said. “But most of all, this weekend gives us a chance to share our passion about our local history and the importance of keeping it alive. This is also a neat reunion-like atmosphere that brings area people together with family and friends whom they might not see a lot.”

The Miller farm is located at 854 James Road. Those traveling north will want to take state Route 83 out of Holmesville and veer off to County Road 245, just north of town. There will be a shuttle service from the parking area to the main event. Entry into the festival is by donation. Times for events could change.