St. John hosts car show Saturday that brings participants from across Kansas to the square

Edward J. Naughton
St. John News
1915 Titan Harvester motor caught the attention of many at the 2021 Cruise the Square Car Show on Saturday in St. John.
A rare 1957 Ford station wagon was a true barn-find for Gary Johnson of Hutchinson.
Marc and Michelle Fischer stand by Michelle's favorite Case tractor Saturday at the 2021 Cruise the Square Car Show in St. John.

St. John's Classic Automobile and Tractor show was held in downtown St. John on Saturday, August 28, with hundreds of auto enthusiasts and local families in attendance at the show around the square.

Visitors came from all over the region including Hutchinson and Great Bend, but also many residents of St. John walked to town square, enjoying lemonade stands, food truck fare, and a variety of hot food offerings. There were at least 80 classically restored automobiles, from many decades including up to the 1990s, and at least a half dozen restored tractors on display. 

Most exhibitors simply sat on campers chairs and waited for people to come by and view their very unique vehicles so they could readily answer questions about how they managed to get these vehicles looking so good and running so well.

Likely one of the oldest motors in the show was a 1915 Titan Harvester kerosene fueled engine owned by Marc and Michelle Fischer, with 6 horsepower to propel the mechanism, which they had set up on a trailer rig. 

Fischer said he purchased the rig back in April 2021. He had the engine running smoothly at the show.

"This 1915 Titan Harvester engine must be the oldest engine at this show. I also have two tractors here, one is a 1958 model John Deere, and the other which my wife Michelle likes is a Case tractor," he said.

Michelle Fischer said she purchased the Case tractor about 18 months ago as a collectors item, but she likes to use it for taking her three grandchildren for a ride on their property north of Hudson.

Exhibitor Kenzie Unruh, along with Ken Folk, brought a 1956 Chevrolet 3100 to display. She said it was already painted an eye-catching purple color when they bought it in Missouri.

"I am a Kansas State University fan anyway, so the color works," she said.

Gary Johnson from Hutchinson had a unique stationwagon at the show, a 1957 Ford Wagon that he rescued many years ago from truly a barn, an honest barn-find for him when he bought it about 18 years ago.

"I bought this station wagon back in 2003. It took me almost four years to get it in shape enough to drive, and it took me another year to get the body restoration done," he said. "When I got the engine in, it was a late model 5.0 Mustang engine, 5-speed overdrive, and got it done with power steering, and disk brakes, the works."

Funds raised from car show fees, raffle ticket sales for pork and beef bundles and other miscellaneous prizes, plus burnout competition entries were collected to support Jubilee, the annual community festival.