SARCOXIE, Mo. — It’s loud, it stirs up plenty of dirt and dust, and it consistently draws hundreds of people to small-town venues every weekend during the spring, summer, and fall months.
It is a labor of love and horsepower.
What you see on Friday and Saturday nights in many communities across the Four States, oftentimes, starts in a place like this and takes place — well sometimes — every night.
Oftentimes, it also involves an extremely patient wife or girlfriend — but then comes the weekend.
“It’s over before you even get started,” said David Burkey, Driver / Reeds Resident.
It’s competitive, but it’s also an outlet. It’s a way to relax, and to cap off a week of doing a regular job.
For these guys, being a part of the Southern Missouri Truck and Tractor Pulling Association is like being part of a brotherhood.
“It’s a big family, family tradition type of deal. Once you’re in it, you’re in it. Yeah, everybody helps everybody. It don’t matter if you got a truck, tractor, or diesel truck. It don’t matter. Everybody helps everybody,” said Blake Simmons, Driver / SMTTPA President.
“A lot of the fun is tryin’ to try new things out throughout the week and goin’ to meet up with guys from all across the state or other states,” said Logan Burkey, Driver / Reeds Resident.
Logan Burkey and his dad, David, are from Reeds.
David, the father, got his son interested in tractors. Logan, his son later returned the favor when it comes to diesel trucks.
“The very first time I drove it, I was shakin’ like a leaf. Now it’s, it’s come to where it’s nothin’. You know what you gotta do and you know what you gotta watch and you just do it. But it’s, it’s over in a heartbeat,” said David Burkey.
There’s prize money, which may not be much, and it usually costs more to get to the host town or enter the pull.
But this isn’t about prize money.
“We spend thousands of dollars for 13 seconds of glory, as we like to call it. It’s a very quick night. One hook is all you get. It’s very loud, very fast-paced, and it’s very energetic to be around,” said Justin Howard, SMTTPA Vice President.
Again, those are the Friday and Saturday nights… But, during the week…
“I gotta do the blow-by tubes still. I gotta re-weld it, ’cause it’s gonna hit this,” said Chandler Olmstead.
The prep work continues — until it’s time to go.
Maple Leaf Shootout Truck and Tractor Pull
CARTHAGE, Mo. — It’ll be time for them to go again a week from Saturday in Carthage — The inaugural “Maple Leaf Shootout Truck and Tractor Pull” at “Garner Downs”.
Garner Downs is located off East Java Road — it’s about three minutes north of the “Boots Court Motel” off North Garrison Avenue.
The event starts at 5:00 p.m., on Saturday, October 21st.
Admission to the event is $10 for those 12 and up.
Admission for children six to twelve years of age — only $5.
If you’re under six years of age, admission is free!
It’s a Southern Missouri Truck and Tractor Pull Association-sanctioned event — meaning some top-quality vehicles and drivers will be in town.
A portion of the proceeds that night will help pay for expenses for two individuals who have close ties to the sport and the Carthage community.
Officials are hoping to not only pull for a cure that night — but also benefit from what’s expected to be another large turnout for this year’s Maple Leaf Festival festivities.
“So it’s a good time to have a pull, along with the car show, the parade, the carnival, all the crafts. So we wanna be able to draw some of those people after the car show’s over to the truck pull, have a good time, and finish Maple Leaf weekend with a big horsepower night,” said Justin Howard, SMTTPA Vice President.
“Twelve and above’s $10, six to twelve is $5, under, you know, bring your little kids out. Under six is free. You got a great concession stand. We’re gonna have plenty of food,” said Cecil Howard, SMTTPA Board Member.