Honoring the buckle’s 40 years

Friday, July 16, 2021

PLYMOUTH CO. — The Town & Country Toy Club will sponsor its 40th Plymouth County Fair Belt Buckle this year.

This will also be the last buckle sponsored by the group, according to club member Dave Lehner, who has coordinated the project.

The group has done 40 continuous years of buckles. 

This year’s buckle depicts an image of the first Plymouth County Fair belt buckle featuring the 40th Anniversary of the fair with the wording “Ending the way it all began.”

The inscription on the back of the buckle reads “40 years ago the Plymouth County Fair buckle was started to showcase the fair’s landmarks and events. The Town & Country Toy Club has sponsored many of the annual belt buckles. 2021 will be the last buckle and we thank everyone for their patronage.”

Lehner said, with the anniversary year, it just made sense to end the project by featuring the first buckle.

“The project started as a fundraiser for the Town & Country Toy Club and a way to promote the Plymouth County Fair,” Lehner said.

The club has 150 colored buckles which sell for $25 each and 150 pewter buckles that sell for $20 each — a price they have kept for the past 10 years. The #1 and #2 pewter and colored buckles have been donated to the Plymouth County Fair for their fair auction on Sunday afternoon of the fair.

Over the years the buckles have featured some of the Pioneer Village buildings, grandstand events, the midway rides plus many others.

“Club members have enjoyed coming up with new ideas for the buckles and meeting the people who collected the buckles year after year,” Lehner said.

He explained how the club used the funds raised.

“The club was founded by people who enjoyed collecting farm toys but we enjoyed giving back to the area communities by donations to youth organizations such as Little League, 4-H, American Legion Shoe Party and families with children with medical expenses, etc.,” he said. “We also donate two pewter and two colored buckles to the Plymouth County Fair for their fair auction every year.”

He continued, “No one buckle is more outstanding than another but we have featured the Round Barn, Peace Officers throughout Plymouth County, Plymouth County Tractor Pull, Demo Derby, chainsaw artist, foodstands and service clubs. Last year the Plymouth County Fair buckle featured the Brown Family.”

The auction is at 4:30 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 1, in Pioneer Village.

During the fair, one of every buckle produced will be on display in the Town & Country Toy Club building located on the west end of the Pioneer Village, according to Lehner.

The club has buckles from previous years available for purchase. During the 2021 Plymouth County Fair the public can stop by the Town & Country Toy Club building on the west end of Pioneer Village to pick up a buckle or they can contact Dave Lehner at 546-7663 to reserve a buckle.

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