The Maze Craze
You can shuck it, pop it, grill it, steam it, butter it and now you can even play in it! Corn has never been so versatile and the latest "in" thing has nothing to do with eating it but more about getting lost in it. A new type of fun has cropped up over recent years and farmers have been turning their fields into a family "agri-entertainment" zone. Yes, the latest craze is to visit a corn maze!
There are now hundred of mazes all over the world! Mazes can be enjoyed in a variety of ways… From an aerial view, the maze might illustrate unbelievably realistic pictures: a horse, a farm, a sea monster, a dragon, sports activities, or a lost city. Amazingly, corn mazes change their theme yearly. Some mazes will highlight puzzle solving and offer up treasure maps or other clues. And, there are often "extras" to enjoy: farm animals for petting, hayrides, pumpkin patches, harvest festivals, and play zones for younger children. If you're lucky, you may event stumble upon a mini-maze, for those too timid to adventure into the gargantuan one.
Though most corn mazes are open late in the summer, the prime time to visit is the Fall (September and October) when seasonal fun abounds with hayrides, pumpkin patches, spooky events, and Halloween-themed activities.
Visiting a corn maze is a great outing for families. The cost of visiting a corn maze is nominal and it can provide hours of entertainment. Imagine how exciting it is to solve the labyrinth in a 10-acre field that has endless kilometres of paths. Be challenged and thrilled by seeking exits from twists and turns. Work together as a family or compete as teams, to find your way out. Sharp, astute visitors (or those just lucky to stumble upon the correct pathways) can exit a maze in less than 30 minutes. The more directionally challenged can wander the gigantic puzzles for up to three hours. Consider visiting a maze at night - it's much more fun for older kids to tackle the grounds under a starry sky!
Some mazes have bridges and tunnels, some have slides, but every maze provides a safe environment to enjoy your family time together. Imagine the joy on everyone's faces when you triumph over this life-sized puzzle!
Be prepared! A corn maze isn't just a walk in the stalks! It's an adventure! Call ahead and find out if it has rained in the past few days. The corn maze could be very muddy. If you still want to head out, wear rubber boots. Otherwise, ensure you have proper, comfortable footwear, dress warmly, bring water - and go to the washroom before starting your venture! Need we say more? A GPS? They're for cheaters!
So challenge your wits and discover why getting lost is so much fun! See if you can escape the maze and be prepared to be amazingly confused!
Where to find a Maze in Ontario
Many local farms will feature smaller corn mazes that the kids can run through but here are the really BIG ones:
803 Willsie Bourne, Belmont, ON N0L 1B0
Attractions: Children's Wood Maze, Children's Corn Box, Pumpkins, Haunting Nights and Haunted Maize during Halloween.
PINGLES FARM MARKET
1805 Taunton Road East, Hampton, ON L0B 1J0
Phone: 905-725 6089 or 1-800-951-7716
Maze Season: Mid-August until October .
Maze: Pingle's features a giant eight acre corn maze! Pingle's corn maze is a wonderful activity for the whole family! The maze takes between 45 minutes and an hour to complete.
Attractions: Mini Corn Maze, Straw Jump, Trike Track, Farm Animals, Face Painting, Bugsy Balloon, Pumpkin Balloon, and Pedal Cart Track.
ROUNDS RANCH MAIZE QUEST
1922 County Rd 92 R.R. 2, Elmvale, ON L0L1P0
Just north of Barrie
Maze Season: End of July until end of October.
Attractions: Petting Zoo, Straw Maze, Western Playground and Pony Rides, Pumpkin Patch, Wagon Rides.
SAUNDER'S FARM MAIZE QUEST
7893 Bleeks Rd, Munster, ON K0A 3P0
Maze Season: Mid-July until end of October.
THE THAMESVILLE MAIZE
R.R#6. 12768 Longwoods Rd. Thamesville, ON
(15 km. east of Chatham)
Maze Season: Mid-August until end of October.
Attractions: Cow Train, Mini Maze, Picnic area/Corn Box/Play area, Corn Awareness Centre, Pumpkin Patch, Field of Screams and Haunted Maize (during Halloween), Farm Animals, Campfires, Corn Box, Corn Cannon, Mini Mazes, and Scout Patch.
THE UXBRIDGE MAIZE
266 Ashworth Rd. Zephyr, ON L0E 1T0
Northwest Uxbridge Township, close to Zephyr and Mount Albert
Maze Season: End of July until end of October.
The Maze: GTA's best corn maze! Come out and get lost in a 10 acre corn labyrinth.
Attractions: Fresh Veggies, Goats, Goats, and more Goats, Saturday Night Maze, Full Moon Maze, Farm Animals, Farm Tours, Corn Box, Country Store, Mini Mazes, Hayrides, and Pumpkin Patch.