BY CHARLENE PAUL
The tradition of giving visitors a good taste of the country, giving them a good scare and sending them home tired continued with the opening of the 2021 Moapa Valley Cornmaze on Thursday September 30th.
During this 25-day event, which lasts the month of October, guests can get lost in the corn maze during the day or frightened at the Haunted Cornmaze after dark. But these activities are just the beginning of the Moapa Valley Cornmaze experience.
The rustling corn stalks in the Haunted Corn Maze are full of ghosts, scarecrows, animatronics and chainsaws in the darkest part of the corn field. This is not a place for the faint of heart. But those who brave the maze will be glad they did. In addition to the horror, there is a lot of fun.
People often ask how the cornmaze is made. It starts with a creative drawing that is uploaded to a GPS program. The young corn is then cut with a lawn mower. Every Cornmaze design is full of dead ends and blind curves with only one clear way out. The challenge is to get to the exit without cutting through the tall corn stalks.
New to the Cornmaze experience this year is the Shriek Shack. Developed by Moapa resident Keith Leavitt, this haunted alley experience lets visitors jump into their own shadows – if they can find it.
“Billy Pulsipher (Cornmaze owner) asked me if I would like to do this and I said, ‘Why not?'” Keith explained. “My wife Katie carved all of the heads out of styrofoam heads and the animatronics are homemade.”
A stroll through the Shriek Shack is an experience. Creepy crawls on the walls, cobwebs, fog, a laser generated swamp, screams, warnings, skeletons and dozens of other surprises make this a must see. Keith and his crew did an excellent job.
Eating at Cornmaze has always been a pleasure, but this year there are some delicious new items.
“I made the decision to grow sweet corn for the first time this year,” says Billy Pulsipher. “It’s so good, sweet and crunchy. Roasted, buttered and topped with special spices, you won’t get enough. You can also pick corn to take home for five dollars the dozen. “
Funnel cakes have always been a hit at Cornmaze.
“This year I asked my sister Kessa to come up with a new recipe for our funnel cakes,” said Billy. “They’re crispy on the outside and soft and tough on the inside. Dust with whipped cream or powdered sugar and you will not be disappointed. “
Kessa has also developed two recipes for ice pops made from melons grown on the farm.
“One of the options is an ice cold frozen watermelon pop that is so refreshing,” said Kessa. “The other choice is cream for a creamy, cold, satisfying pleasure. All melons used are grown here on the farm. “
Hungry visitors can also enjoy hamburgers, cheeseburgers, hot dogs, french fries, and apple pie, as well as sodas and ice-cold water.
The cow train, a favorite of the kids, is included in admission and runs every evening until it closes. At a screeching five miles an hour, the train, pulled by a miniature tractor, takes the drivers down a dusty farm road. For children between the ages of two and eleven, there is no limit to how often it can be driven.
The farmer’s swing carousel is for children aged 1-8 years and is included in the entrance fee.
Children and adults love to race across the track as fast as their feet can pedal in the pedal car.
In the petting zoo, it is a highlight for visitors to experience goats, cows, horses and chickens up close.
The pig races show Oreo-loving pigs trying to beat each other for the coveted biscuit to the finish line.
For those who want a slower pace, the Day Hayride is exactly what the ghouls ordered. The cart is pulled by a large John Deere tractor and drives the same route as the Haunted Hayride without the ghosts and hunters. Both hayrides are included in the entry fee.
The pumpkin and melon fields extend over two hectares. Visitors can pick the thickest pumpkins and the juiciest melons for fifty cents a pound.
The Cornmaze is even open to large families and other groups. Fireplaces can be booked and paid for at mvcornmaze.com. Seating is limited so be sure to bring a couple of chairs. Bring your own hot dogs and marshmallows to roast over the fire pits.
Although the days are still a bit warm, temperatures drop as soon as the sun goes down. Bring blankets and jackets just in case.
While the Cornmaze is fun for everyone, there is one problem that plagues it while it’s operating – a zombie apocalypse. As someone once said, “There are zombies in the hills.”
Billy and his crew are doing their best to keep the zombies at bay, but it’s just too much with all of their responsibilities.
“We’re doing our best,” said Billy. “But the help of our attentive visitors is a must.”
Those who want to help protect the Cornmaze from these crazy zombies can hop on the zombie paintball bus for $ 25. The bus finds the best zombie sighting point.
“We’re fun for the kids,” says Cornmaze owner Billy Pulsipher. “The point is to make sure the kids are happy, dirty, and dusty when they go.”
Moapa Valley Cornmaze is open Wednesday through Sunday and other select days in October. Visit mvcornmaze.com for full and detailed hours of operation.