Tractor ride to roll through Austin area

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 19, 2003

The second annual Chris Frenz KGLO Tractor Ride begins today and continues until Wednesday.

The Tractor Ride is compared to RAGBRAI, the well-known bike ride that goes through Iowa each year; only this ride is done on tractors.

Chris Frenz is the KGLO Radio Farm director and organizer of this event.

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"This will be the same tractor ride that will start and end at the same point and travel through two states," KGLO Marketing Director Tami Ramon said.

The Tractor Ride is for antique tractors. Tractor collectors will be celebrating their hobby and community members that the tractors drive through will reminisce about days gone by. The ride begins in Mason City, Iowa. Two-hundred tractor drivers, along with their support team, will register, get acquainted, attend the driver's meeting and review the safety rules that govern the Tractor Ride.

On Monday the tractors will roll from the North Iowa Fairgrounds in Mason City to Grafton, Iowa, for lunch. Gov. Tim Pawlenty is expected to switch places with the Iowa governor at the Minnesota-Iowa boarder south of Austin and then ride into Austin. The Tractor Ride will be stopping in Lyle at 1:28 p.m. for lemonade and cookies, served by the Garden Club in the City Park.

From Lyle, the tractors will make a few more stops before rolling into Austin on Highway 105 between 2 and 3 p.m. They will spend the night at the Mower County Fairgrounds. On Tuesday the tractors will travel from Austin to Northwood, Iowa, for lunch and then on to Albert Lea for an overnight stay. Wednesday, tractors will travel from Albert Lea to Fertile, Iowa, for lunch and then on to the North Iowa Fair Grounds in Mason City for ending ceremonies.

Sheila Donnelly can be reached at 434-2233 or by e-mail at