The annual DeKalb County Barn Tour is shaping up to be a fun-filled day in southern DeKalb County.
Saturday, Aug. 10, will celebrate the sixth year of this educational and photographic opportunity, co-sponsored by the Joseph F. Glidden Homestead and the DeKalb Area Agricultural Heritage Association in DeKalb from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Although no town resides in Victor Township, it is rich in agriculture history and is home to one of the largest farming operations in Illinois. Livestock and grain farms are featured on this year’s tour, where participants drive to each location in any order, tour the barns, view livestock, take part in family activities and experience a day in the country.
Three barn styles are represented at the seven farm sites. Barns were built for different purposes, and ethnicity sometimes influenced the style. Visitors at stop 3, the Wold farm, can tour one of the first barns in the area to use the shawver truss type construction, with a gambrel roof, which allowed for an open hay-mow area, with no posts or beams to interfere with hay storage. The bottom outward flare of the roof is thought to be of Dutch influence.
The arched roof of the Sawyer barn at stop 1 is a post pegged-barn-construction innovation with fabricated curved rafters, which maximizes storage space in the upper story. The gable roof style at stop 4, the Bergfeld farm, is popular in snowy regions, as the sharp-pitched A-line shape allows the snow to flow down and keep the weight off the roof.
A Guide Book, which serves as your ticket, contains hand-drawn sketches by David Alan Badger, a history of each barn, a map of locations, a list of activities at each site, and educational articles about barns. Badger also will be available throughout the day to sign Guide Books.
Bringing along a cooler may come in handy if you stop by a fresh market vendor for garden produce, flowers or herbs.
Tickets cost $25 a carload and are available in advance at www.dekalbcountybarntour.com or on the day of the tour at the Victor Township Office, 8478 Suydam Road, Leland, or at any barn location. DAAHA and Glidden Homestead members receive a $5 discount. While cash is preferred, credit cards will be accepted at stop 6, where Barn Tour souvenirs also will be available.