LEVANT—Fall is road trip time and one of the coolest destinations we’ve seen in a long time is the Treworgy Family Orchard corn maze that changes its five-acre corn fields every year into a spectacular interactive maze.
This family-owned farm in Levant, established by Gary and Patty Treworgy in 1983, was just a pond and a cornfield before they eventually transformed it into an apple orchard, farm, petting zoo and five-acre corn maze. It is considered the oldest corn maze in Maine.
But it’s their artistic rendering of that corn field every fall that has garnered worldwide attention. Their award-winning corn maze has been recognized by USA Today Reader’s Choice Award. Having won first place for their Corn Ships Ahoy (a pirate ship) maze in 2018, this year they won second place for their Blueberries for Sal design, based on the cover of the iconic 1949 children’s picture book.
“My brother-in-law, Jonathan Kenerson, has some really artistic talent and every year we come up with an idea of what might make a nice maze with a Maine theme or a farm theme.” said Matt Pellerin, Treworgy’s Director of Agriculture, and who is is the son in law of Gary and Patty.
In previous years, some 60,000 corn plants had been transformed into Paul Bunyan, The Good Knight and Dragon, a Celtic labyrinth and many more designs since 2001, when the original design was a giant popped piece of corn. Inside each maze there are stations with riddles.
“Today there are actually corn maze companies that come in and design and plant your maze for you, but we started doing this before those companies existed,” said Pellerin. “We developed our own methods and in the spring it takes our crew about two days to basically put a grid out into the field, carve out pathways and begin planting around that.”
Pellerin said they never do an aerial check of the design until it is complete, then usually take some photos from an airplane.
“Up until the last two or three years I didn’t know how all the details would turn out until we got up into the airplane,” he admitted. “And I’d be wondering, did I do it right?”
Pellerin said the corn is not actually eaten, because by the time it grows ten feet tall in the late fall, it is inedible and tough. They simply cut down all the stalks and use it for green compost for the next season.
Even though this is a massive labor of love, the farm sees thousands of visitors a year, which helps with the farm’s bottom line.
For thrill seekers who want an extra dose of Treworgy also offers four Night Maze dates in October 18, 19 25, 26 from 6 to 7:30 p.m.
“A lot of corn mazes in the fall focus on a scary theme, but we are family-friendly so it isn’t haunted or scary,” said Pellerin. “When I was 16, I’d go out at night and run around a corn maze with my friends and it was a lot of fun, so I wanted to recreate that.”
A hayride and candy treats are part of the maze.
The maze takes about 45 minutes to complete. The maze costs $8 for children and $9 for adults. Tickets include a free small ice cream.
For more information visit: treworgyorchards.com/cornmaze to see images of past years’ corn maze designs.
Kay Stephens can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org