Fifteen years ago, Armin Enns, the chair of the Eden Foundation at the time, came up with the idea of a vintage tractor trek through area villages as a fundraiser.
The fifteen-year milestone of the event happened this past Saturday.
Director of Development with Eden Foundation, Jayme Giesbrecht says 54 tractors were registered for the trek this year, which is higher than they've seen in a number of years.

"This isn't the highest it's ever been, however, we were so thrilled that 54 people were willing to take the whole day to spend time on their antique tractors and just have fun with us," said Giesbrecht. "We're really glad we could honour Armin's idea. And to this point, over 15 years, we have raised almost $ 1 million. So, in the coming years, we will hit that milestone and it will be another exciting chapter."

This year, the 54 'tractor trekkers' brought in a record amount through the event for the Eden Foundation, raising $78,375.

The money will get divided during the foundation's granting season. However, Giesbrecht says they first need to get a better idea of what the needs are in each of Eden's organizations, including Segue Career Options, Recovery of Hope, and their housing and supports.

"Linden Place we have in Winkler, and then in Steinbach, we have some housing facilities as well, and in Winnipeg. In Steinbach right now, we're working towards a kitchen upgrade, a commercial kitchen that will allow people to kind of re-learn cooking techniques, and community meals...that's one big way the money will help. There are always upgrades to be done at the (Eden) mental health centre, and so there are a variety of ways that this money will help, but it is helping in a big way to provide that hope and that healing and community that our vision statement says."

A number of vintage tractors are lined up in a straight row."What was really neat this year was to be able to start in the City of Winkler at the Emmanuel Church, because that way some of the folks in Winkler were able to line up on 15th Street and see the tractors go by," noted Giesbrecht. "Terrance Klassen, our photographer got some really neat photos of these vintage tractors with modern style houses in the background, and it just shows how far we've come."
A number of vintage tractors are lined up in a straight row.Supplied photo
Two men on their antique tractors surrounded by beautiful yellow fields. Photo by Terrance Klassen - provided by Eden Foundation.