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Goal set for threshing record bid

An event in Austin next July seeks at least 125 machines

Organizers of a world-record-scale charity threshing bee, to be held next summer at Austin, hope to have at least 125 threshing teams on hand for the win.

Harvesting Hope, scheduled for July 31, 2016 at the Manitoba Threshermen’s Reunion, has announced its goal of having 125 antique threshing machines running simultaneously to harvest a field of wheat.

Organizers expect to have at least 500 volunteers from about 100 communities, with net proceeds to benefit the Canadian Foodgrains Bank and the Manitoba Agricultural Museum.

Also, spokesperson Ayn Wilcox said Nov. 24 in a release, “we’re asking all Manitobans to join our team in the fight against global hunger by supporting this once-in-a-lifetime event through our community champions program.”

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Through that program, organizers said, donors can be named as a Threshing Team Sponsor ($1,000), as Adopting an Acre of wheat ($500), or as a Friend of Harvesting Hope ($250). Donors at those levels will get a “special invitation” to the Harvesting Hope event. Any contributions over $20 get a tax receipt.

Businesses are also invited to support Harvesting Hope as either a community champion or a corporate partner, organizers said. For more information or to donate, visit harvestinghope.ca.

So far, Wilcox said, “every day since our official launch in August, individuals are contacting us to offer threshing machines, equipment and resources.”

The threshing bee world record was last broken Aug. 15 at Festival de la Curd at St-Albert, Ont., with 111 machines operating. The previous record, 41, was set in 2013 at another Canadian Foodgrains Bank fundraiser during the Olde Tyme Harvest at Langenburg, Sask., about 30 km west of Russell.

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