verb (used without object)

  1. to conduct a campaign or speaking tour in rural areas by making brief stops in many small towns.
  2. Theater. to tour small towns to stage theatrical performances.
  3. (of a pilot) to give exhibitions of stunt flying, participate in airplane races, etc., in the course of touring country towns and rural areas.
  4. (of a professional athletic team) to tour an area playing exhibition games after the regular season.

verb (used with object)

  1. to tour (various places) as a barnstormer.

verb (intr)

  1. to tour rural districts putting on shows, esp theatrical, athletic, or acrobatic shows
  2. mainly US and Canadian to tour rural districts making speeches in a political campaign

1815, in reference to a theatrical troupe’s performances in upstate New York barns (usually featuring short action pieces to suit vulgar tastes); extended 1896 to electioneering, 1928 to itinerant airplane pilots who performed stunts at fairs and races. Related: Barnstormed; barnstorming.

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