OTTAWA — A specially commissioned log cabin quilt and a model Allis Chalmers vintage tractor were the top two items auctioned at the annual Pedigreed Seed Sale on the final day of the 90th annual Ottawa Valley Farm Show last week.
Rose and Dave Stewart prevailed in a good-natured bidding war with Ottawa Valley Seed Growers’ Assocation Secretary Arlene Ross, as the Morewood couple captured the anniversary-edition quilt with a whopping offer of $7,600 when auctioneer John Joynt’s gavel came down.
The contest between Rose Stewart and Ross was so close and exciting, the volunteer quilters behind the original agreed to make a similar piece for the losing bidder in return for her price — thus netting an additional $7,500 for the charitable cause.
Vintage iron enthusiast George Nesbitt was the last bidder standing when he ponied up $1,500 for the limited edition model tractor, number one in the production series, which he had himself donated. Later, one of the OSVGA’s directors, Barry Dean, announced to the crowd that Nesbitt was upping his actual price to $4,500 for the replica — a full-size version of which also stood in the lobby of the EY Center.
When all was said and done, the 19 donated items auctioned off at the March 16 sale — mostly seed — raked in over $18,000, putting the event’s lifetime tally at approximately $150,000 raised to date for the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario.
At 10,711 people, attendance was down from last year’s 11,329, “a decrease almost entirely attributable to the weather,” observed OVFS general manager Tom Van Dusen, but still within the 10,000 to 12,000 range organizers anticipate each year.
Below, some scenes of the 2017 Ottawa Valley Farm Show.