An Indiana apple-orchard owner and beekeeper will claim the grand prize in West Fargo, N.D.-based Bobcat's “Great Bobcat Tractor Pull” contest, in which entrants describe how they would use a Bobcat compact tractor to accomplish tasks ranging from common acreage chores to major undertakings. As the grand-prize winner, John Shepherd of Porter, Ind., receives a Bobcat CT235 compact tractor and implements package.

Shepherd's entry was selected from almost 10,000 that were submitted from March through August. Contest judges said they appreciated the detail Shepherd used in describing how he and his wife would use a Bobcat tractor to move hive bodies, plant trees in the orchard, and install fencing on their 25 acres near the southeastern shore of Lake Michigan. The apple farmer's description of his story as a “21st-century, reality-version of ‘Green Acres’” because his wife is a “city girl,” and he is “kind of country” also contributed to the couple's selection. “We recognize how much our target market can relate to the Shepherds' situation,” said Leroy Anderson, Bobcat marketing communication manager. “She prefers the city, he loves the country, and now they have the best of both worlds — along with the typical chores and projects that need tending to on a small to mid-sized acreage. That type of thing is very common among our target audience.”

Second-place prizewinner Lucas Greff of Elgin, N.D., will receive a Bobcat 2200 utility vehicle, and 15 third-place winners will receive Bobcat jackets for telling their stories.