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ANNOUNCING THE 2014
The schedule, in a nutshell, is as follows:
The raffle tickets for the JOHN DEERE GATOR are now on sale. Click on the alligator at the left.
If you have never been to a "Gathering of the Green"...
the following is a brief summary of what happened in March of 2012.
The 2012 theme “Generations of Power” was, as they say, a “no brainer.” With Deere & Company celebrating the 175th anniversary of John Deere’s first plow and the 100th anniversary of the “modern” Deere & Company, there was certainly reason to offer an opportunity for John Deere collectors and enthusiasts to celebrate these milestones. “Generations of Power,” seemed to appropriately describe the 100 year era of the “modern” Deere & Company, and by dividing the time period into four segments, each of the four sponsoring clubs was challenged to create a display that would depict a typical John Deere dealership. In addition, celebrating the thirteen companies John Deere purchased in 1912 to become a full-line manufacturer led to awesome displays depicted with story boards, renderings of the factories, and examples of the beautiful machinery made by these companies. One gentleman wrote that this was the best he had ever seen. We hope you enjoyed our efforts.
The large and spacious RiverCenter convention facility offered many opportunities for other displays of beautiful, unique tractors, implements and collectibles. Congratulations are extended to the special GOG committee that worked for over a year to locate as many of these treasures as time and space allowed. The incredible effort expended by these tireless members in acquiring the many, many rare and beautiful items was above and beyond anyone’s expectations, and we’re confident you would agree that they did a spectacular job.
Special thanks also to the clubs and individuals from coast to coast who also created displays for the enjoyment of our 2012 guests. The number of these displays increases at each “Gathering,” and as we look to the future, we’re eager to again extend the opportunity to clubs who express interest in this activity.
The vendor hall seemed to be a favorite destination in the daily activities enjoyed by many of our Gathering guests. Many of the tried and true vendors who had joined us for the previous six “Gatherings” were present, and we thank them for their continued participation. We were especially glad that many new vendors were able to attend GOG 2012, and we’re hopeful they had an equally positive experience. In all, 78 vendors were on hand to offer everything from art to tires and from clothing to new and old parts. We noted a significant number of attendees rolling out their purchases on carts so we think everyone, both vendors and purchasers, went home with smiles on their faces.
As always, we received glowing reports regarding our workshop leaders. We’re so grateful to them all for sharing their knowledge and enthusiasm for issues related to maintenance and restoration of John Deere tractors and implements. In all, the 2012 Gathering offered 60 historical and technical workshops – including several designed for the gals. Our workshops continue to be one of the main focuses of the Gathering and are important as we work to preserve our old John Deere tractors.
The 2012 featured speakers, Ken Buell, Corey Rabe, the Misener Family, Sally Lang and Ray Defenbaugh (banquet), were outstanding ….. delivering relevant, interesting and often humorous messages. This aspect of the conference is always well-received and important to offering a diversified program for our Gathering attendees.
And the tours are always popular with the guys and gals. This year the GOG offered thirteen tours, some of which were offered more than once. Organizing and administering this facet of the conference is a huge undertaking and has become an important feature of the Gathering. A big thanks goes out to the folks who put this part of the conference together.
Once again, Gathering attendance numbers increased with well over 2300 attendees coming from 35 states, Canada and Australia. Thanks to all who joined us in Davenport – it’s your continued support and enthusiasm that keep us going. Here is a typical example of that support:
During the course of Gathering 2012, this writer was asked an interesting question by one of our guests…”Just why do you folks (the four sponsoring clubs) do this? (offer the “Gathering of the Green?”) I must say that I had to give that some thought.
The four sponsoring clubs meet every other year at Grand Detour, John Deere’s home, for a tractor show, and during a group meeting there during the 1999 show, Mark Johnson, an NEITCC member, shared that he had recently attended a conference sponsored by another tractor company. Given the fact that no such conference had ever been sponsored for John Deere enthusiasts, it was his opinion that our four groups together could create such an event for our faithful green and yellow collectors. After some serious conversation, the group agreed to give it a try, and the rest is history.
I know that bit of history doesn’t answer the original question…”Why do we do this?” We do this because of…YOU…ALL OF YOU! We do this because you are so very appreciative of our efforts and you offer your kind understanding when everything doesn’t run perfectly. We do this because of your generous, positive comments. We do this because you are friendly and eager to share your love of John Deere products. No one “talks tractors” better than GOG attendees. We thrive on your kindness, friendliness, and eagerness to strike up a conversation. You never fail to share your enthusiasm for the activities we have offered during the event, and that is so deeply appreciated. The amazingly kind comments so many of you share when completing the opinion form at the closing banquet are so meaningful for us. We honestly don’t know whether to smile or cry. Thank you so very much!
So, that’s “why we do this.” Thank you so much for joining us at “Gathering of the Green” 2012 and for sharing your warmth and kindness so freely. It’s what keeps us going. If you weren’t able to join us, plan to do so in the future. The 2012 links at the left side of the page will show you some of the things you missed.
The "Gathering of the Green is sponsored by|
four John Deere antique tractor clubs:
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