VITEO secretary Sharen Armstrong shows off a Minneapolis Moline U model toy. Van Dusen photo

RUSSELL – Vintage Iron & Traditions of Eastern Ontario is gearing up for its second collectable and assorted toy auction, with proceeds to be directed toward purchasing 12 food baskets for Eastern Ontario families in need.

As they did last year, organizing committee members are seeking good quality donations for the sale, which takes place March 18 as part of the Ottawa Valley Farm Show. VITEO will also take toys on consignment with a percentage going back into the charitable fund.

The inaugural auction was a success, with enough money raised to put together 12 baskets and distribute them according to need. The project was first proposed by Wyatt McWilliams of Navan who was also behind such milestone charity campaigns as Hay West and Ottawa’s Rural Expo & Food Aid Day.

Directed by legendary Eastern Ontario auctioneer Carson Hill of Kenmore, the sale will start at 7 p.m. during the second day of the OVFS at the EY Centre adjacent to Ottawa International Airport. In order to complete the event within a reasonable length of time, only 100 toys will be sold; contributions must be booked by Feb. 15, said coordinator Barry Dean of Arnprior.

Other key VITEO members involved in collecting donations are Henry Staal of Russell, George Zandbelt of Winchester, and Gib Patterson of Edwards.

Many among VITEO’s members are giving again this year to the event loosely modelled on a toy sale at Syracuse’s New York Farm Show. That sale is in aid of Future Farmers of America Alumni, with proceeds going to the organization’s programming.

Antique and new toys will be on the block. The toys don’t have to be pure farm collectables, Dean indicated; they can have other themes and be made of metal or plastic. There are no reserve bids and payment is by cash or cheque.

The auction is a companion event to the club’s annual miniature collectable tractor and equipment sale at the farm show, with a different brand featured every year and a limit of 100 units sold. This year’s selection is the Minneapolis Moline Model U.

Each year, the first in the series is donated to the Farm Show Auction – separate from the toy sale – in support of the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario. And every year, that donation raises about $4,000 with the region’s major collectors vying to outbid each other.

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