Corn Mazes

A popular activity for folks at this time of year is wandering through corn mazes.  I was recently thinking about mazes and wondering whether or not they were an Appalachian tradition; I didn’t particularly think they were and I don’t have any recollection of walking through any before my own kids came along, so I did a little research and was surprised to find (and I admit that I am still a bit skeptical) that the first corn maze in America was 1993!  According to their website,  The American Maze Company made America’s first corn maze and it was at Lebanon Valley College in Annville, Pennsylvania.

This first corn maze was what looks to be a stegosaurus and was dubbed “Cornelius, The Cobasaurus”.  It covered 3.3 acres and the path was 1.92 miles long!

If that bit of trivia has inspired you to walk a corn maze, you will be interested to know that we have a few around here.  The two I am aware of are Sinkland Farms in Riner and the Corn Acoustics Corn Maze in Meadows of Dan.

This year Sinkland Farm’s maze looks to be a sort of celebration of the year’s seasons at the farm.  There is a snowflake, strawberry, ear or corn etc.

While looking for a picture of this Sinkland Farms maze, I couldn’t help but notice that in addition to the maze, they will be featuring pumpkin slinging and catapulting demonstration this weekend too.  Now that is something you probably don’t see every day!

October 23-24- RETURNING THIS YEAR!!
Punkin’ Chunkin’ World Champion “Team Carbo” of Raleigh, NC will be demonstrating their catapult and slinging pumpkins up to 1500 feet!!

The Meadows of Dan maze this year is a celebration of the Blue Ridge Parkway:

I have been to this maze several times and personally know the owners of it, Sue and Sammy Shelor.  Each year Sue has a different maze and she and Sammy do the planning and planting and maintenance themselves.  Sue sent along several photos to show some of this.  I never really thought about the process before I saw these photos and I found it interesting, maybe you will too.

Before the planting:


The corn grows in orderly rows:

Sue and Sammy mark out the design before the corn gets too high:

Then they cut the corn out of the paths that they marked:

The next thing you know, they have a maze!

The setting for the Corn Acoustics maze is stunning, it sits right off the Blue Ridge Parkway on the top of a mountain and the views are gorgeous.  Sue has frequent craft shows and other functions next to the maze most weekends.  Also, you might recognize Sammy’s name, he is the leader and banjo player for The Lonesome River Band .  If Sammy is around, he frequently will be playing music and interacting with folks.   It’s a good time.

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1 Response to Corn Mazes

  1. Pingback: Highlights of the McConnell Library Appalachian Music Collection- Steve Martin | Appalachian Music and Culture

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