Bader and Sons carries on John Deere tradition
When the Hoyt E. Whelan Company changed over to Bader and Sons on March 1, 2009, the company had 90 years of history in Tecumseh and was the oldest John Deere dealership in Michigan. Five years later, Bader and Sons has grown the business started in 1919 by Whelan and expanded its presence in Tecumseh.Store manager Kevin King started working for Whelan 29 years ago, and is proud of what Bader and Sons offers to the community.“The scale of the dealership and the equipment we offer has just gotten bigger over time,” he said. “It was a very smooth hand-off.”Walking into the showroom on Occidental, customers see an array of John Deere lawn tractors, parts, clothing and collectibles, with information about the wide variety of farm equipment. Outside the showroom is a block of John Deere farm equipment, new and used, that Bader and Sons has to offer.In addition to its in-store sales, the company’s farm equipment is also found on the Internet. “Our stock can be sold and trucked anywhere,” King said.In addition to sales, Bader and Sons also provides service for both farm and lawn equipment. The business recently built an 80’ by 150’ building just for service work.When something goes wrong, customers experience the convenience of having their equipment picked up, worked on and returned to them. Bader and Sons also has four service vehicles that can make calls right to the fields to get equipment up and running quickly.Over the past 29 years, the biggest change King has noticed is the increased size and productivity of the John Deere equipment he sells. “The window that a farmer has to plant and harvest crops seems to be getting smaller every year,” he said, noting that farmers need equipment that works quickly and efficiently in that available window.Recently, Tecumseh residents might have noticed the old Foodland building had been torn down, with rows of farm equipment lined up in the old parking lot. Eventually, King expects Bader and Sons will use the site for a building, but there are no plans in place to build anything right now.James Bader and his wife, Valma, started Bader and Sons in 1988 with the purchase of the St. Louis location, and the company expanded to include locations in Portland, Grand Ledge, Linwood, Rosebush, South Lyon, and Tecumseh.The success of Bader and Sons in Tecumseh is a group effort with all the staff, King believes. Surrounded by quality equipment and helped by skilled employees, customers return to Bader and Sons.“I thoroughly enjoy what I do,” King said. “I am so appreciative of being in such a great community and having loyal customers.”For more information, visit www.greentractors.com. The dealership is open Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. They can be reached at 423.2133.