Start your tractors at this years Berville Festival

With a large part of St. Clair County being rural, there is nothing more synonymous with residents than owning a tractor. 

The Berville Festival is free to enter and will take place on July 13 and 14 at 13651 Hough Rd in Allenton. The festival has tapped into the love of the farm life implemented with a good old-fashioned tractor pull, sponsored by the Mid-Michigan Mini Tractor Pulling Association, for the past 45 years. 

The classes for the tractor pull include the Kids Garden Tractor, Garden Tractor, Motorcycle/Snowmobile Tractor, and v8 Mini-Rod pulling. There is $1000 in prize money to win, $500 for the Open/Zinger 145 lbs. and $500 for the V8 Small Block 195 lbs. donated by Wyatt Performance & Fab LLC. 

For the Tractor Pull Competition, there is a 60% payout. Andrew Wyatt, one of this year's event organizers, encourages anyone interested to come on down. The festival is a great way to make friends and hang out with the community. They will accept registration on the day of the event or people can also pre-register and find out more information on their website.

Not only will there be a tractor pull, but there will also be a local softball tournament, a 50/50 raffle, and concessions. Wyatt hopes the event will continue to draw interest.

“When Covid hit, the three-day festival kind of went away. Kind of fell apart. So, we're trying to get that back going again to the event it used to be,” Wyatt says. Last year, there were 25 participants in the tractor pull, with people watching in the stands and tailgaters partying in the lot. He hopes that number will double.

A participant on tractor at last years Berville Festival's Tractor Pull Competition.

Wyatt is a newer member of the Lions Club and one of the three Mid-Michigan Mini Tractor Pulling Association organizers, including Darin Gilbert and Dan Shevnock. The three hope to add events to the festival each year, including past ones such as the bump and run and the demolition derby. 

“When I was a kid, I remember being there, hanging out and watching the tractor and truck pulls, the demolition derby, and the bump and run, and always enjoyed the fun,” Wyatt says. 

The organizers also hope to keep this a low-cost, fun, family event. 

“Tractor pulling is an affordable sport for young kids. It can be very inexpensive for youth when we start at the age of four pulling the lawnmowers,” Wyatt says. 

Andrew welcomes anyone who would like to volunteer for this year’s event or play in the softball tournament to contact him at 586-610-3907 or
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Read more articles by Leslie Cieplechowicz.

Leslie Cieplechowicz is a photographer and writer who developed her crafts by working the streets of Detroit as a paramedic and shooting old, historical buildings she found on her runs. Her love of creating unique imagery led her across the state, then the United States, then globally, where she recently finished shooting in the country of Czechia, documenting its lively culture, friendly people, and ornate architecture. She currently works as an instructor after leaving the road and spreads her love of photography to her students. Her book, Detroit Revealed: A Different View of the Motor City, features obscure and amazing hidden gems of the city which is sometimes portrayed as unapproachable.