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Home arrow News arrow Local News arrow Playing it by ear


Playing it by ear

Lisa Britton/For the Baker City Herald Zachary Wise (wearing sunglasses) directs his group in what he thinks is the right direction inside the corn maze at Val’s Veggies. Also in his group, from left, are Colton Slatter, Skye Smith, Weston Slatter and Phoebe Wise. All attend Keating School.

By Lisa Britton

For the Baker City Herald

The elementary approach seems the best for finding your way through a maze.

The technique: Barrel through at top speed until you hit a dead end, then pivot and charge in the other direction.

You’ll get out eventually — and may be a bit dizzy from rushing through the stalks of corn, some towering to 15 feet.

The students from Keating and Haines elementary schools (about 150 children total in kindergarten through sixth grade) tried their navigation skills Tuesday at Val’s Veggies corn maze in Medical Springs.

It opened Sunday.

“They’re saying it’s bigger and harder than last year,” said Valerie Tachenko.

She agrees, so far.

“I’ve tried four times. I haven’t made it yet,” she said.

Last year’s maze — the first for Val’s Veggies — started on one end with the exit at the other side of the corn patch.


This year, the entrance and exit is on the same side — you go in, wander around, and hopefully exit out a different way than you went in.

Although speeding through is one approach, the maze offers reward for taking it a bit slower — there are 10 corn-related questions to answer along the way.

“You have to find all 10 questions and Marco Polo. He’s lost in the maze,” Tachenko said.

(At one point Tuesday, this was overheard in the maze: “We found him! Not Marco  — Colton!”)

The maze and pumpkin patch is open Sundays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Thursday by appointment only from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Fridays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturdays from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. 

The night maze is for ages 15 and older, unless accompanied by a parent. Glow sticks will be available for purchase.

Admission is $8 for adults and $5 for ages 12 and younger. Group rates are available.

Special events include:

•  Oct. 13: Midnight in the Maze. The maze will be open from 7 p.m. to midnight, and you can also sit around the campfire where the York’s Kitchen Band will be playing from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Note: This date is a new moon, which means you’ll have no help from moonlight.

•  Oct. 21: Family Day. Admission is $7 adults and $4 for children.

•  Oct. 28: Costume Contest from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Wear your best costume and enter to win prizes.

To get there, take Highway 203 (Exit 298 off Interstate 84) to Medical Springs. At mile marker 26, turn onto Blue Mountain Ridge Road. Go half a mile, then turn right on Houghton Creek Road. Drive two miles — the maze is on the left.

For more information, call 541-853-2358 or go to www.valsveggies.com.



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