Arc, EAPA host farm heritage festivities

Published 12:45 am Tuesday, October 18, 2011

John Toler, a member of the Eastern Antique Power Association, hitches his Harley-Davidson motorcycle to a horse carriage, providing a unique means of transportation during a farm-heritage celebration held Saturday in Chocowinity. Co-hosted by the EAPA and the Arc of Beaufort County, the event was enjoyed by area residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities. (WDN Photo/Kevin Scott Cutler)

CHOCOWINITY – Nearly 100 individuals from across Beaufort County gathered in the Bear Creek area of Chocowinity on Saturday for a special celebration of life on the farm.

The second-annual event, co-hosted by the Arc of Beaufort County and the Eastern Antique Power Association, gave area residents with intellectual and developmental disabilities a chance to participate in a full schedule of activities. Preschool children to folks well into their 80s enjoyed tractor and antique-car rides, games and a hayride, according to EAPA show chairman Stan Hudson.

“It’s a good event,” said Hudson as he watched several people experiment with old-fashioned, hand-operated water pumps. “It makes you feel good at heart to help somebody and to give them these opportunities … and it gives our club the opportunity to give back to the community and to share our love of farm heritage.”

“We’re going to keep doing this every year,” said Sandra Buckman, Arc of Beaufort County director. “Everybody that came today could ride as many times as they wanted to ride.”

“And some of them got to drive a tractor for the first time,” Hudson interjected.

Buckman said she advertised the event by distributing fliers in Beaufort County schools, group homes and work centers, adding that she was pleased with the turnout.

“We have a lot of people here today who live in group homes, and with events like this they have to agree to do it as a group,” she said. “And they all wanted to come.”

Taking a break from the rides and other activities, the guests enjoyed a lunch sponsored by Country Boys Auction of Washington and Warren’s Hot Dogs of Greenville, Hudson said.

The mission of the Arc of Beaufort County is to promote the basic human rights of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities by working with and for them and their families through advocacy and service, according to Buckman.

The Arc is preparing for the upcoming holiday season, during which the organization will provide gifts and host a Christmas banquet and dance. A silent auction helps defray the costs of the Christmas projects.

For more information about the Arc of Beaufort County, including how to make contributions, contact Buckman at or by calling 252-945-4414.