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Tractor trek headed to Centrue Bank

Event will bring awareness to Wounded Warrior Project

Published: Wednesday, May 28, 2014 3:44 p.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, May 28, 2014 4:06 p.m. CDT

PRINCETON — Centrue Bank in Princeton wants to continue honoring our nation’s military with an event set for 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday at Centrue Bank’s north branch at 1839 N. Main St., Princeton

C. Ivan Stoltzfus is an auctioneer, real estate broker and retired farmer who divides his time between homes in Pennsylvania and Florida. He grew up farming with a John Deere tractor and loved the sound of a two-cylinder engineer. He had a dream to cross the country on an adventure with an old John Deere tractor and to raise funds along the way for a special mission.

Stoltzfus’ dream has become a reality, and he is currently traveling from New Jersey to California aboard a 1948 John Deere Model A tractor. His mission? To raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project — an organization supporting injured service members. As he travels the country, he hopes to raise $1 million, as he “changes lives one mile at time.”

Centrue Bank branch manager Tammi Lanxon said she received an email from a co-worker’s husband who stumbled onto Stoltzfus’ endeavors, but the bank rallied around the project and decided to host a picnic as Stoltzfus rolls into Princeton. If everything goes as planned, Stoltzfus aboard his Model A John Deere will roll into Centrue’s north branch parking lot around 11 a.m. with a local police and fire department escort. Princeton veteran Vern Sondgeroth will also help lead the way.

Once the procession gets to the bank, Sullivan’s Foods is joining forces with Centrue Bank to host a cookout, which will include brats, hot dogs, sweet treats and more. All proceeds from the cookout will go toward the Wounded Warrior Project. The public is invited and encouraged to attend.

Parking may be tight, but event-goers can use the southwest corner of Sullivan’s Foods parking lot. Lawn chairs are welcome.

“I don’t think we honor the military enough. It’s just one more way we can let them know how much we appreciate what they have done and continue to do for us,” said Mike Smith, Centrue’s regional business development officer.

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