JERRY CITY — The 24th annual Elmwood FFA Toy Show was held Sunday at the Elmwood Community Center. The
annual show draws both vendors and shoppers from a wide area, mostly from Ohio and Michigan.
This year 23 vendors from near and far filled the tables with an assortment of toys including new and
older tractors, cars and trucks. Most of the merchandise was still in original packaging, including
items that dated back to the 1970s or older.
Veteran volunteer Terry Jo Wise helped coordinate the event for the alumni. She has been active with the
toy show for many years as two of her children have graduated through the chapter, and she currently has
a freshman member of the FFA chapter.
“I’m a fixture here,” Wise joked. “This has been a good year for us.”
Brooke Harrison came along with her husband, Travis, and their three children, Will, 11, Garrett, 8 and
“We like it because it’s close and they have a good selection,” the Wayne resident said.
She noted her daughter Paige, was excited about the pink Oliver tractor her parents got for her. Being
shy, Paige smiled at the mention then hid behind her mother.
Mom noted that her oldest always saves his Christmas money to purchase things at the show and has been
coming since he was a toddler.
Showing off his two recently purchased truck and trailer combination die-cast toys, Will Harrison said he
really liked both of them.
“I can’t hardly choose which one, but we have one like this except its not a tri-axle,” he finally said
showing a Mac with three axles at the rear of the truck.
When his mother tried to correct him, not recalling that type of truck, Will reminded her that his
grandfather has one like it with a double axle at the rear. She conceded he was right.
Andy Avina of Wayne regularly brings items for the show. He first brought items after seeing one of the
early promotions years ago offering space for NASCAR and farm toys.
“I saw they were looking for NASCARs and I had some,” Avina said, noting he worked with dad in the
family’s operation of the Avina Auction House in Wayne.
On Sunday he said he filled two pages with items sold, including some merchandise for his father, also.
The 1993 Elmwood graduate said he enjoys supporting the FFA chapter and said he does well at the show in
part because, “I have obscure and weird stuff that nobody else has,” Avina said.
Mary Barber of Perrysburg also brings items to the sale, including an assortment of books, towels and
aprons to accompany the farm and other toys.
Larry Nickelsen of Genoa, a self-proclaimed collector, has brought his merchandise for sale every year.
“I’ve been here every year since Ed (former FFA adviser Ed Feasel) started this.”
Nickelsen said this year’s attendance was far better than last year and credited it to good advertising
He said various items sold well including the aforementioned pink Oliver tractors.
Contrast the veteran Nickelsen with newcomer Jimmy Rosenberger of the Mini Chrome Shop based out of
Fayetteville, Pennsylvania. He brought his merchandise to the show for the first time. He was the vendor
from the farthest distance and was glad he made the trip.
“We were really busy through lunch. I was very pleased with the good crowd,” Rosenberger said.
He said his trucks were his big seller at the show. Fresh off a two-day show in Illinois, this show
worked well for his schedule on the trip home. Rosenberger said he saw the advertisement for the show in
the Toy Farmer trade publication.
The show is organized through the FFA chapter and the Elmwood FFA Alumni Association, with all proceeds
benefitting the students.
Money is raised from a small admission charge, as well as table fees for the vendors. Additional money is
raised through the concessions sold by the chapter and alumni group.