Cedar Rapids Gazette, April 23, 1974, Page 26

Cedar Rapids Gazette

April 23, 1974

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Issue date: Tuesday, April 23, 1974

Pages available: 52

Previous edition: Monday, April 22, 1974

Next edition: Wednesday, April 24, 1974

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Publication name: Cedar Rapids Gazette

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Cedar Rapids Gazette (Newspaper) - April 23, 1974, Cedar Rapids, Iowa The Cedar Rapids Gazette: Toes., Apr. 23, 1974 J3 mmmrnHitching 40 Horses Changes Iowan s Life-Style By Jack Branscom Ames Daily Tribune ZEARING (IDPA) - Dick Sparrow doesn’t live in Zearing. He lives on a 1,100-acre farm five miles southeast of Zearing, and lately he’s been spending more time away from home than he’s been there. However, Dick Sparrow is the reason Zearing has received a great deal of national publicity. Dick Sparrow, a powerfully-built man of 44 who was raised on a farm near Zearing and attended Iowa State university, is the only man in the world who drives a 40-horse hitch. Not only is he the only man in the world doing it, he’s the first since 1004 As his wife, Joy, observed, “it’s put Zearing on the map if it wasn’t before.’’ Since Sparrow first drove a 40-horse hitch almost two years ago, life at the farm has changed. Oh, how it has changed. Take that month-long trip to California this past December and January. An estimated 1.25 million persons turned out for the Rose Bowl parade which featured Sparrow’s hitch, and another IOO million or so saw it on national television. Seven Vehicles During the trip 30 persons traveled with the Sparrows in seven vehicles, including school-aged children who ** -Af* 'tiff:    ■■■    v* were flown back to school after the holiday season. Five of those vehicles carry the Belgian horses Sparrow uses in his hitch. The trucks also carry the saddle horses used by the “outriders” needed to help control the hitch along parade routes. People turn out to see the 40-horse hitch, which is sponsored by the Jos. Schultz Brewing Co., Milwaukee, Wis. Dick owns the horses, but the company takes care of the costs on just about everything else connected with the operation. One million people were on hand to view the unveiling of the 40-horse hitch on July 4, 1972, in Milwaukee. On Labor day that year 60,000 watched the hitch clop down Zearing’s main street. Ten rows of horses, four abreast, pulling a seven-ton circus wagon amount to about 140 feet of power that Sparrow compared to “trying to hold back a locomotive under a full head of steam.” Even for a 240-pounder, controlling 47 tons in IO reins, five in each hand, is exhausting long before the parade route is at an end. “I’m simply not physically capable of driving for two or three miles, as big as I am,” he has said. Sixteen Appearances Last year Sparrow and the aitch made 16 appearances,mm -anging from California to Washington, I). C., from Chicago to El Paso, Texas. This spring there are plans to perform in a Kentucky Derby parade in Louisville, Ky., and a parade at Indianapolis during the “Indy 5(H)”. Yes, life on the farm has changed. Almost daily there are calls from all over the nation, requesting performances by the hitch. The Sparrows have two phones in the office, side by side, that are constantly in use. Their monthly phone bill ranges anywhere from between $250 to $450, and Dick says the personal mail daily “outnumbers the junk mail.” In 1972 there were two films, in color, made at the farm, one that lasts 26 minutes and another that runs nine minutes. On one of the films the narrators are Die k Sparrow and actor Ernest Borgnine. Ernest Borgnine The movie crews were from New York. Changes? Joy, who says she and Dick met while they were freshman students Iowa State university (she’s from Springfield, IIL, Dick was born on the farm they live on), is what you would call the business manager. Last year she said income tax forms for 38 persons were handed out, making them just about the biggest employer in the area. Farming Tops List Farming is still high on the list for the Sparrow’s, however, and that included feeding 82 horses (70 of them Belgian draft horses), about IOO head of cattle, 30 more beef calves, and raising corn, soybeans, oats and hay. There have been some additions to the house but, as Joy pointed out, their children are the fifth generation of Sparrows to live there. They plan to stay on the farm five miles southeast of Zearing. A ? 'wk * * n rn* * J* " *v mf '% ■ <* rn- % 4 -UPI Photo Colorado’s Mascot The University of Colorodo moscot, Rolphie, wanders in the pasture near the CU campus in Boulder. The baby heifer was born earlier this week Dairy Price Protest: NFO Trucks Cows to Slaughter HOLCOMBE, VV is (I PI) -National Farmers Organization (NFO) members brought more than WH) cows to market last week in protest to drops in dairy prices That was HH) more than the goal of 500 that had been set by the national NFO which called for the sale and slaughter of the cows as a protest of a three-cent fall in wholesale cheese prices at the Green Bay Cheese Ex* hange NFO members had been promised a premium of 2 cents a jH»und over the market price if they sold. Blame Imports Only a few farmers appeared at the collection point here with most of the animals hauled iii bv truck. The cows were sold on a yield and grade basis and will be taken to the Armour Pa< king plant at Green Bay Steve Pavich, Mason, the state NFO president, said NFO members were spending $10 to $11 producing IOO pounds of milk and were receiving only about $8.50 He blamed the cheese price decline on government import and dairy t imperatives. In Chicago, Mr** Ethel Rosen, who led an area Isiycott last year in protest of high prices, called the action “a publicity stunt to get the American public to accept higher milk prices " Non Producers Tm not saying the dairy farmer is not getting a fair price, but I just feel the American public should know they’re going to have this ruse played on them,” she said. “The cows they re sending to slaughter are mostly canners and cutters which don’t produce much milk anymore,' she said The cows arriving here looked representative, but several truckers termed them “culls” — cows removed from herds because they are no longer profitable NFO officials called the animals “mother milk cows Fuel Woes in Wheat Country WICHITA, Ran. (AP) - The IOO percent fuel supply promised by federal officials (or agriculture may fall as much as 20 percent short overall during the wheat harvest in seven midwestern states unless changes arc* made, the wheat states’ fuel allocations officials meeting here said • “Unless some drastic action is taken, farmers are not even going to catch up,’’ said Oklahoma fuel allocation officer ('huck Hill. “At the federal level, they’re basing their allocations on erroneous data. Distribution “Distribution will be the problem if we can conv inee the pundits in Washington there is a need here equal to reducing the filling station lines rn New Jersey and the taxicabs in Washington,” Hill stated. “It appears to me FEO is spending too much time on tourism and the average man s ability to drive up to a commercial filling station and get fuel,” said Colorado’s Stall Bogren. Robert Robe!, a Kansas State university professor of biology who serves as chairman of the Governor’s Advisory Council on Energy and Natural Resources, estimated that the total fuel need (or the wheat harvest in the states ranged from 97 to KHI million gallons Estimates Robe! said preliminary estimates showed 55 million gallons of diesel fuel and 42 million gallons of gasoline will be needed to get custom harvesters to the fields, cut the wheat, and get the grain hauled to storage points. Some states are in better shape than others, he noted, with the shortage presently projected at about 13 percent or 14 percent for Kansas, 20 percent for Oklahoma and 30 percent for South Dakota. BIG AUCTION 4 Miles East of Delhi on Highway 38 Sit., April 27 -11 (LM. Antiques, Eurniture, lawn & Garden Equipment. This is large sale Anyone who has antique fever will like this sale Pete ! lunch. Also offering a nice Acreage Mr. & Mrs. id Harks, owner Delhi Savings Bank, Clerk Drumbarger, Auctioneer Please Consumer The farmer wants to please the consumer because he is paid by the consumer and because the consumer demand for his products cither increases or decreases the price he receives for his products. Horticulturist Develops Better Tasting Carrot E A S T LANSING, Mich. (UFI) — What s up. Doc? Better carrots, according to horticulturist Larry R. Baker. “In a practical sense," he said this week, “we have taken a giant step forward in carrots.” The 35-year-old Baker, horticulturist at Michigan State university, previously failed in his projec t to develop a seedless pickle. But this time, he said, he has succeeded in making carrots better lasting and better looking. The problem with carrots, he said, is they taste bitter — “like oily turpe ntine.” Because of that taste, he said. mothers cook carrots for kids who do not want them. “Right now,” Baker said, “carrots are somewhere down near spinach. We’re trying to achieve a much higher class of vegetable.” Michigan State granted him $4 9(H) to experiment on raising hybrid carrots. SLUMBERLAND PRESENTS: A gala 7-day event! cV/. dr Our First Annual 'Z TW {J, Cl % "‘Agril Sinooz-c ‘Days Sale I April's the Oh! My Aching Back!" season when muscles moan from all the yard and house work That's when you really appreciate snoozing on a good, firm mattress, or taking it easy on a comfy sofa or recliner. So we ie having a weeklong "Snooze sale for you...April 21 thru April 27. We've priced everything LOWER THAN EVER! Come see us this week, for great snoozing at great savings! OPEN SUNDAY I -5 PM Monday-Friday 9:30-9 PM Saturday 9:30-5:30 PM 0©OCD©te slumberland 201 I st Avenue S.E. 363-0245 jnsp&ft ranm NewJ Ag Department Names Auditor WASHINGTON (UPI) - A career federal auditor. Leonard ll. Greens, has been named to head the* agriculture department’s new office of audit. The unit was created recently when the agency's old office of inspector general was divided into separate offices for investigations and audits. Ag Execs The Ag Execs will meet Thursday at noon at the Longbranch. The speaker will be Lee Per kinson of Tabor and Co. He will talk on “How Your Grain Goes to Market”. Lower, then Higher Beef Prices Due, Editors Told By Al Swegle WASHINGTON - An agricultural department economist, J. Dawson Ahalt, Monday said federal price guidelines have had little impact on the widening beef price margins due to the way the Cost of Living Council regulations have been set up. Agriculture department figures show that the price of choice beef has gone down six cents a pound from the first week of March to the first week of April, Ahalt told a Newspaper Farm Editors of America meeting here. “This means beef price margins are quite wide,’’ Ahalt said. Ahalt indicated that the price of beef at the consumer level will go down further in the short run. because a government survey last week showed a 15 percent increase in heavy cattle in feedlots. The true k strike* in February caused the buildup in heavy cattle numbers, Ahalt said. “This means the price of live cattle is expected to Ik* less,” he said. The two factors — the narrowing of farm retail price margins and the live market price decline — mean beef prices will go down further at the retail level, Ahalt said. “But after these declines arc* worked through the* marketing system, we expect higher beef prices,” Ahalt said. The same governmental report that showed a 15 percent buildup in heavy cattle numbers also showed that the number of all cattle was down eight percent from a year ago. Ahalt acknowledged that the Cost of Living Council figures farm-retail margins on a different basis than the agricultural department does. “Our figures arc* based on the retail value of retail beef at the farm level,” Ahalt said. “Retailers have figured their meat prices on a percentage markup basis in the past, as the Cost of Living Council regulations have allowed retailers to use a percentage system. “Retailers were also allowed flexibility in establishing their base period, sn retailers had great flexibility in setting their price of produce." going og mg The fun season is just beginning' Spring is here and summer is not far behind . . . and of course, that means you're going to be outdoors a lot. Cycling, camping, backpacking, boating, swimming, picnicking, will all be foremost on your mind these days’ Why not really enjoy the outdoor life with the right kind of equipment? You'll find a full scope of summer sports equipment advertised daily in the Classified columns of this newspaper. Turn there now and seek out the particular items you need for your fun times that lie ahead! The Classified Ads will get the thing going for you! Gazette Classified Ads Phone 398-8234 8-5 Mcnday-Friday, until Noon Saturday ;