Doug Markel, Veryl Keppler, JD (Ray) Burkett, and Don Yoder (photo) decided over coffee at the truck stop on St. Rt. 6 and Rt. 23 that they were going to try to get a club started for antique tractors and engines.
They decided to have a meeting at the Yoder’s on August 28, 1986, where they would choose officers and a name for the club.
The first name of the club was Sandusky County Country Collectors. In 1988 it was renamed by Bob Peck’s 8-year-old son, Ryan, as Sandusky County Restorers of Antique Power or S.C.R.A.P.
The first official meeting of S.C.R.A.P. was held on September 11, 1986. Meetings were first held at the Yoder’s house, then the Sandusky County Sportsman’s Club, then Steve Ruth’s business barn, and now the Helena Fire House on the third Thursday of every month .
The First President was Don Yoder who served from 1986-1989. Don and Richard Flahiff, served as the first Chairmen of S.C.R.A.P. Tractor Pulls with the help of their wives Joann and Linda who remain very active in the club to this day.
The first Vice President was “JD” (Ray) Burkett. “JD” served from, 1986-1989, he also served on the Board of Directors and was a very active member up to the time he lost his eyesight. With the help of his grandson, he was still able to participate in the show. “JD” passed away just a few days before the show, August 27, 2003. Members of S.C.R.A.P. were asked to drive their tractors in his funeral (all the founding members were present).
The first Secretary Treasurer was Doug Markel. Doug served from 1986-1989. Doug is no longer active, but still supports the show and is still a member.
Veryl (Red) Keppler had been a very active member, serving on the Board of Directors and was the announcer for the S.C.R.A.P. show and tractor pulls for many years. Veryl died in March, 2016.
The first ten men in the club were Don Yoder, JD Burkett, Veryl Keppler, Doug Markel, Karey Keppler, Steve Ruth, Kevin Ruth, Bob Peck, Paul Brecheisen, and Jim Reed. These are the ten men who put on the first show, with the help of others, and are the ones who made a commitment to make the club the success it has become. Jim Reed also is the only person to have a tractor that has been to EVERY S.C.R.A.P. Show. It’s a little Ford 8N, which the Reed family has lovingly “Old Henry”.
The first show was at Heritage Days, White Star Park, Gibsonburg, Ohio, October, 1986. There were ten small engines and seven tractors in attendance. They did this for three years, then in 1989 the Sandusky County Parks District was having financial difficulties. The men decided they would ask if they could they have a S.C.R.A.P. Show, if they did the upkeep on the park for the year. The Parks District gave them the date of Labor Day Weekend. A vote was taken and the First Annual S.C.R.A.P. Show was set for Labor Day Weekend, 1989.
The first Show Chairman was Steve Ruth, he served from 1989 until 2002. Paul Brecheisen was the first Consignment Auction Chairman who was instrumental in getting Baker-Bonnigson as our Auctioneers, they have been with us ever since 1989. Bob Peck was the first Flea Market Chairman. The first Vendor at the show was the Helena Fire Department.
S.C.R.A.P. was incorporated in 1991. As far as the memories go, the first Board of Directors came into being that same year.
Women first became individual members in 1992. Even though Linda Yoder was the first woman member of the club, she was never active until after 1992. The first women to hold office as members were Joann Flahiff and Connie Klausz.
This is just a brief history and some highlights of the early years of S.C.R.A.P., Inc. There are so many, many people that have been instrumental in the success of the club. So many people have worked really hard to make each show a success. It’s just that our club has been so blessed and has grown so fast that to get everything, and every name here would be impossible.
The members hope that you have enjoyed learning about the early history of the club and they would like to say THANK YOU for all the hard work and commitments that everyone past and present has made to make the club the success it is today! We invite you to become an active member of S.C.R.A.P., Inc.
Linda Yoder (original author, deceased April, 2014)