First and foremost, thank you to everyone involved in making the 2019 International Plowing Match and Rural Expo (IPM) happen – from volunteers and vendors to competitors, sponsors and visitors. It was a great success and that wouldn’t have been possible without you.
This awesome event was also aided by Mother Nature, who provided five straight days of sunshine and warm temperatures to help bring out large crowds.
“Our primary strategic objective when we set out to create this was to host the greatest Plowing Match in the history of mankind. I’m proud to say … I think we’ve done it,” said IPM 2019 Chair Neil Fox, expressing gratitude for the “wonderful, magical volunteers” who were involved with the five-day event. “They put in so many hours, so much blood, sweat and tears (into this).”
More than two years of planning went into hosting IPM 2019, with more than 1,200 volunteers helping bring it all together.
Among the many event highlights are a visit from Amber Marshall, star of CBC’s Heartland; a performance from Justin Tyler, runner-up in the 2019 Boots and Hearts Emerging Artist Showcase; about 150 BMO Plowing Competition participants; the Northeastern Ontario Pavilion; and the crowing of Wellington County’s Heidi Frey as the 2019/2020 Ontario Queen of the Furrow.
The IPM also featured dozens of entertainers – largely local talent – and demonstrations, such as fashion shows, spread out among three stages. Another major attraction was the full 450 vendor/exhibitor spaces offering a variety of large and small equipment, rural living items, an array of food and much more.
“What a wonderful week we’ve had here,” commented Sheila Marshall, President of the Ontario Plowmen’s Association, the parent hosts of the IPM. “They say if you build it, people will come. And as we have found this week, people have come … from all across the province of Ontario.”
As is tradition, IPM 2019 concluded with the passing of the flags to representatives of IPM 2020, to be held in Lindsay, Kawartha Lakes from Oct. 14 to 17, 2020.
“What an event you put on here in Verner. You should give yourselves a round of applause,” said Kawartha Lakes Mayor Andy Letham. “Thanks for having us up here. Thanks for the incredible job you did and I hope to see you all down in Lindsay in the City of Kawartha Lakes next year.”
Our photos and video of IPM 2019