Bob’s Corn Maze seemed like a festive autumn family-friendly activity. It wasn’t supposed to be something spooky or thrilling. It wasn’t a haunted maze. So when I was invited to go there by a friend and her family, I was expecting a fear-free evening.
I doubt my experience was typical, since most people have the common sense not to go to a corn maze at nighttime in the rain. Unfortunately, by the time I had convinced myself that it was probably a bad idea, I’d already paid for the wristband that indicated I was allowed entry onto the hay truck that would take my group and the rest of the waiting customers to the maze’s entrance. I was too cheap to turn back.
The man at the entrance to the maze gave us a hint – the ribbons that twined between the cornstalks would be of a different color if we were going in the right direction. From red to green until we reached the midpoint, and blue to orange after that. I’d have loved to see the midpoint, or a green ribbon.
With all the slipping, uncertainty and clinging for support, it was oddly reminiscent of the first and only time I’ve ever been ice skating. I didn’t enjoy it, and never went back.
All we got was a postcard sized map that was difficult to read and of little use.
That little map couldn’t compete for my attention once inside the maze. There were dead ends that took 10 minutes of walking in the dark until we were nearly touching the ribbons that sealed off any other exit than going back the way we came. Deep puddles were indistinguishable from shallow ones in the dark. People would slosh through the puddles and splashed enough that the water started collecting in my shoe.
Some other people seemed to want the most bang for their buck and found the idea of a dry, sunlit corn maze too tame. I overheard one girl say that she wanted to get lost, and seemed excited about it. Granted, she was wearing a headlamp and rain boots.
Bob’s Corn Maze is marketed as something for all ages to enjoy, something families with small children can do together. I’m pretty sure this is because the kids will follow the advice and guidance of their parents, who in return will do their best to make sure they don’t get lost.
On the other hand, the owners of the maze themselves mostly leave the maze-goers to their own devices. I’d have liked a warning about the slipperiness in the rain. I’m pretty sure with the $12 entry fee, they could have afforded to give us flashlights or lined the maze with Christmas lights.