Get lost, get spooked

Maggie Pilcher

 Tired of the same Halloween decorations and events running in Topeka? Want to get in touch with nature while enjoying some of the most unique activities available locally? If this is the case, take a short drive south to Grantville, where Gary’s Pumpkin Patch hosts an array of exciting activities.

Located just ten minutes from Topeka, Gary’s Pumpkin Patch, formally known as Gary’s Berries, offers a variety of fun for the family and friends. The main attraction is the corn maize, which sprawls across eight acres of land. Test your navigational abilities in the day, or enter at your own risk by moonlight. Each year, the maize is cut into a different pattern, usually associated with agriculture or Halloween. This year’s theme was a tractor.

“I went for the first time last weekend, and I have to admit that I wasn’t as capable with direction as I thought I would be,” junior Don Bailey said. “I entered the maize when the sun began to set, and didn’t make it to the exit until well after dark. I had a really good time, though.”

If getting lost in a maize is too much to handle, don’t worry! There are many other activities to take part in. If the youngsters tag along, there is a tire maize designed for them. Also, a Halloween inspired hayrack ride is offered; nothing is more festive during the autumn season than an old-fashioned hayrack ride!

Also provided by Gary’s Pumpkin Patch is the FrightMare Farm, a haunted house tour hosted each Friday and Saturday night beginning in October. Stroll the maize, pick out the perfect pumpkin, and then proceed to get spooked!

“I go to the maize every year, but the main reason I go is the FrightMare Farm,” sophomore Brian Seese said. “I wait until Halloween season, because Gary’s Pumpkin Patch has the best and closest haunted house.”

In addition to the maize, hayrack ride, and haunted house, there are pig races running every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Also, Gary’s Pumpkin Patch is home to Topeka’s first jumping pillow, a giant rocking chair, and the first ever Goat Mountain.

“It’s a tradition for my friends and I to make the journey to Gary’s Pumpkin Patch around Halloween season,” freshman Camrey Gayer said.  There is just so much to do that isn’t offered in Topeka; I love the atmosphere and getting in touch with the outside.”

Tickets start at $9.41, which includes all activities except FrightMare Farm and the bon fire. The tickets for FrightMare Farm are $12.23, but a special combo price is $17.88, which admits one to all activities.