Kelly’s Landing, located in Louisiana’s Cajun Harvest Country, is more than an agritourism destination. Here you’ll learn how rice gets from field to fork, and how crawfish get from pond to plate, two crops staple to Cajun cuisine. You’ll also hear one man’s story of how a life-changing diagnosis stripped him of his love and livelihood, farming, and led him to a newfound hobby, toy collecting.
Kelly’s stories are an attraction of their own at Kelly’s Landing
It all started in December of 1989 when Kelly Hundley and his brother Michael left their Louisiana homes on a road trip, touring farming communities in Mississippi, Tennessee, and Arkansas. They stopped at a John Deere store in Arkansas and found themselves staring at a giant display, stacked from floor to ceiling with every John Deere toy imaginable.
Kelly had seen toys and replicas before, but nothing of this magnitude. Kelly asked the salesman, “What in the world are you going to do with all these toys?” to which he responded, “Come back Christmas Eve and I won’t have two toys left on the floor.” The salesman explained that many of them would be bought and given to children as Christmas gifts, but majority would be taken home by collectors.
A lightbulb went off for Kelly Hundley that day. He’d recently been diagnosed with macular degeneration, an eye disorder that causes blurred and reduced vision, which led him to come to terms with the fact that he would have to give up farming and his hobbies of hunting and flying.
Kelly purchased a few toys that day in Arkansas, marking the start of his collection, and bought even more throughout the remainder of the trip. Collecting John Deere toys made sense to Kelly; he was a farmer, his brother were farmers, their dad was a farmer, and their grandfather was a farmer, all of them favoring John Deere equipment.
Many years have passed since Kelly began his collection in 1989, and as you can imagine, the collection has grown quite large. If you ask Kelly how many toys he has, he says “1,837” with a laugh. One look inside the nearly over-flowing 80×80 foot metal building that houses the collection at Kelly’s Landing and you’ll know that the number must be a joke. “That’s the year the John Deere Company was founded,” Kelly says. The truth is that no one has attempted to count the collection, and it grows too rapidly to try.
A corner of the John Deere Room, featuring signs paying homage to Kelly’s French and German heritage
Half of that metal building is devoted to the John Deere collection, while the other half contains the collection of Massey Ferguson, Oliver, Moline, Case, International, and other well-known brands, along with a kitchen and dining area. Kelly loves hosting tour groups, office parties, and field trips, serving his delicious home-cooked Cajun meals and watching as guests browse the collection with amazement.
Chicken and Sausage Gumbo, a frequently requested item on the menu at Kelly’s Landing
Halfway between Houston and New Orleans, right outside of charming Crowley, Louisiana, Kelly’s Landing is ready to host your next tour group!