Long Acre Farms in Macedon is celebrating Friday the 13th by opening its 13th annual Amazing Maize Maze. Since 1998, the farm has been steadily growing this agro-tourist phenomenon and its customer base. Their success has caught the 'ear' of a nearby farm.
Long Acre Farms owner Joan Allen greets customers from far and wide. In the first few minutes the maze was open she greeted folks from Spain, Japan and Denmark. No matter where they’re from, the appeal is the same.
"People are looking for something that’s outside of computers and TV and they're looking for active and wholesome. It’s grown in a way that’s wholesome and educational for us,” said Allen.
Joan says the maze took about five years to really take root in the community.
"Most people, if they haven’t been here, have at least heard of us. We're very fortunate," she said.
Just down the road you'll find Country Way Garden Center. Billing itself as the area's largest perennial grower is fine, in the spring.
To generate revenue in the fall the owners decided to enter agro-tourism with a corn maze. Andrew Slominski thinks there’s room enough in this community for another maze. There's certainly enough corn.
"We're really hoping to draw a little bit more of a college crowd this year. Maybe some school groups, church groups. We're hoping to draw a diverse crowd," said Slominski.
Andrew is not worried about an established maze about three miles away, as the crow flies. His six-acre maze will have a pirate theme.
"Every place has its own recipe, its own mix of attractions," said Slominski. "The agro-tourism community as a green industry is pretty tight knit. It’s a very open industry because we all realize the importance of bringing people out, getting them on the land seeing how the corn grows, the pumpkin grows. You know, where their food comes from.”
"If people love mazes, do mine. Then love the next one, and the next one. We all need to do a good job," she said.
"Families are looking for more family time, getting out, active, moving around and this is what you can do with that," said Jessie Chandler, maze patron.
It’s eco-friendly agro-tourism, and some healthy competition.
Long Acre Farms
Country Way Corn Maze