The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Currents

August 21, 2007

Maze Craze

Pierpont sisters choose Amish motif for corn field maze

There’s Amish man’s face in the Hudson sisters’ cornfield in Pierpont, but you’ll need airplane or helicopter to view it.

From ground zero, the gentleman’s eyes, hat and mouth all look the same, swaths through corn stalks higher than your head, stretching toward the August sky even as the multiple paths stretch your sense of direction.

The Hudson Farm Corn Maze, advertised as the county’s first, is back for a second year. Sisters Sue, Pam and Rena Hudson have devoted the past three months to creating the face of an Amish man in the six-acre patch of field corn. Visitors have already started exploring this agricultural adventure, open daily through Oct. 31.

Located on the family farm – the Hudsons’ father died in 1995 and mother in 2005 – the corn maze is an attempt to save the farm by re-inventing it. The sisters raise a few goats on the land and lease a portion of its productive acreage to David Holden, who planted the corn field in which the sisters created the maze.

Because the corn must be planted in rows at 90-degree angles, more fertilizer and seed are required for planting a field destined to become a maze. The result is a lush, thick ocean of maize. “We have probably the best field of corn in Ashtabula County,” says Sue.

The timing of the planting was perfect this year, giving the sisters almost enough time to remove the unnecessary corn by late June. Last year, they waited until too late in the season to start the task and ended up having to cut matured stalks. That involved hauling stalks long distances out of the maze. The work overwhelmed them, preventing the sisters from completing the covered-bridge design in one section of the field

“There is more maze cut in there than there was last year,” says Pam.

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