Fall is here, and that means pumpkin spice, football, colorful leaves, hayrides and corn mazes.
Wooden Nickel Buffalo Farm in Edinboro has brought in tourists for the past nine years with a themed corn maze. The maze started Labor Day weekend and runs until Nov. 4. It is open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays, and 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. The maze costs $7 per person, and group rates are available.
Wooden Nickel Buffalo Farm opened 26 years ago and is known for its bison meat. The family initially started eating bison meat to help with the high cholesterol and blood pressure that ran in the family. Since then, they have added a petting zoo, a restaurant, gift shop and corn maze.
“We started doing corn mazes nine years ago,” said Dan Koman, third generation owner and operator at the farm. “Each year we pick a different theme.”
Themes are picked based on the ideas that sound best at the time.
“We don’t really have a set way of finding themes. A few years ago, we did a local fire department theme. That idea came about because we were talking to someone who worked at one of the local stations,” Koman said.
This year’s theme is the farmer and the next generation. The Komans also added a bridge, which connects the farmer’s and the child’s hands. The maze includes 16 mailboxes that “corn stalkers” must find. Each mailbox has a sticker that corresponds to one of the words on the map. Some of the mailboxes this year include “hard work,” “legacy,” “heritage” and “tradition.”
As Halloween approaches, the maze gets more crowded.
“We tend to get more visitors during October. People like to come when it is a bit colder,” said Koman. “This year, minus last week, we have been pretty busy. Because of the warmer weather, we had less people come, which I expected. Many people like to come when they can bundle in sweatshirts and boots to trek through the mud.”
Mercyhurst has taken a group of students to the maze for the past few years. Students can pick to go in one of two groups and walk the corn maze with friends.
“It was fun, but a mess,” said Aleique Allen, senior Biochemistry major. “When I went sophomore year, it rained the night before, so my shoes were soaked. It was so muddy.”
For some students, Wooden Nickel Buffalo Farms is the first corn maze they have ever visited.
“We don’t really grow corn in Jamaica and we don’t celebrate Halloween, so going with Campus Ministry to Wooden Nickel Buffalo Farm was my first time,” Allen said.
The Komans work hard to bring people back every year for their unique mazes.
“People come from a good distance for the corn maze. I cut and organize my maze a bit different than most,” said Koman. “We get families, college kids and grown adults. Everyone seems to have fun.”