Explore corn mazes in Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Ohio, Indiana & Illinois
Since the late 1990’s, U.S. farmers have been turning their corn fields into mazes that attract tourists lured by the challenge of finding their way along twisting pathways through towering stalks. Maze experiences in the farm-rich American Midwest region are especially known for their creative themes and challenging designs. With messaging and imagery that range from the environmental to the patriotic, many mazes go beyond classic movie and story motifs to present important issues reflective of our times.
So, stir your heart and mind while putting your navigation skills to the test with a visit to one of the mind-blowing midwestern mazes below. And while you’re there, be sure to take advantage of the farm’s full menu of outdoor fun—the corn maze may be the star, but it’s just the beginning of the fall activities offered.
New Salem Corn Maze in Door, Michigan
Just in time for the spooky season, this night-time maze promises a harrowing, haunted atmosphere replete with resident corn stalkers. Participants will find themselves crawling, walking and running through the maze. Those who wish to quash the surprise attacks of the zombies that frequent these parts can jump aboard a Zombie Attack wagon and take up paintball arms.
The farm offers another after-dark option for upping the fear quotient—following one of two paths through the Witches Woods. Each promise spine-tingling encounters with witches and ghouls (read: dozens of actors and props). So, come if you dare and stretch your vocal cords with a few screams.
For a tamer daylight adventure—all the fun without the fear—visit the Daytime Cornmaze, Paintball Gallery, farm animals, pumpkin patch, bouncy house, child’s train and playground. This farm offers a veritable cornucopia of fall activities, including hayrides. And be sure to sample the homemade donuts and cider, too.
Treinem Farm Corn Maze in Lodi, Wisconsin
This unique award-winning annual maze (it earned the 2018 USA Today 10Best Readers’ Choice Award) located 20 miles north of Madison, WI, can only be described as a work of art. With its inspirational 2020 theme—“Water Bear Resilience Maze”—the 15-acre plot is sure to garner both public appreciation and accolades.
In a many months-long process, owners Angie and Alan Treinem research, brainstorm and plan the design, and Angie develops an illustrated plan that she plots out on graph paper. Then, when the corn is under a foot tall, the family team mows and tills the maze trails into the fields, using a precise grid system. The subject of 2020 year’s maze—the tardigrade (water bear)—is considered the most resilient animal on earth. Angie chose it because of her hope “that we’ll be inspired by the tiny survival champions, and that maybe we humans will work hard and help each other to stay on the short list of Most Resilient Animals on the Planet.”
The result is a 45-minute to several-hours-long maze experience that incorporates a starting mission, varying levels of challenge and opportunities to win prizes—all of which rely on teamwork and persistence. To exit the maze, participants need to complete a map puzzle by rounding up seven puzzle pieces located within maze mailboxes. In addition, maze wanderers can unlock prizes by finding supremely hard-to-find secret locations not shown on the map.
Farm admission includes multiple offerings beyond the maze—from an adventure slide; tractor tire playground; and pumpkin patch to hiking and walking trails; goats, chickens and horses; and a wilderness area.
Pricing: $11.50 (13 and over); $9.50 (6-12). Reserve a ticket and time slot here.
Hidden Trails Corn Maze in West Salem, Wisconsin
The theme of this year’s corn maze—one of Wisconsin’s oldest and largest—is “ordinary people doing extraordinary things” (think: an ode to first responders and healthcare workers). The design is spread over 12 acres and features over five miles of paths. No one who sees the maze will walk away unmoved by the way in which it powerfully honors everyday heroes.
The maze design comprises four distinct maze experiences. A number of sponsor checkpoints are built into the largest two mazes and provide fun incentives for participants to keep going. For each checkpoint they find, they receive a discount to a sponsor business. The two smaller mazes incorporate a mystery for participants to solve.
On top of the stunning maze experiences, the farm offers a sizeable play yard with over 25 games and activities, a pumpkin patch, wagon rides (on weekends) and farm animals. It all adds up to a great family-fun day.
Sever’s Fall Festival Corn Maze in Shakopee, Minnesota
This four-generation family farm operates the second oldest corn maze in the U.S. and the oldest in the Midwest. And the maze is cut entirely by hand.
Themed “Explorer Sever,” this maze depicts a lush jungle scene and involves a hunt for six ‘pictures’ (maze scenes). At the outset, maze challenge participants receive a map and handout on which they mark their findings as they progress. They encounter 26 signs labeled A to Z along the way that help orient them in the maze and contain information about this year’s theme.
Upon completion of the maze (it takes about 30-40 minutes), visitors can enter info about where they found “Explorer Sever” in a dedicated contest website, which makes them eligible for a grand prize of $500 at the end of the season.
Other festival attractions include: an obstacle course, an exotic petting zoo, live music, straw sculptures, jumping pillows, magic shows, pig races, zip lines, a tire mountain, a straw bale maze, pumpkins and hayrides.
Maze Craze in New Springfield, Ohio
With its 2020 “A Christmas Carol” theme, this 21-acre maze complex, which comprises four distinct mazes, infuses winter cheer into fall and creates an uplifting sense of anticipation for the jolly season ahead. The novella’s creator, Charles Dickens, no doubt would be pleased by the 9.2 miles of trails that twist and turn around depictions of the story’s imagery and major characters, from the lantern held by the ghost of Jacob Marley, the ghost of Jacob Marley and Ebenezer Scrooge to Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim and The Ghost of Christmas Yet To Come.
Geared to different age groups, the mazes represent varying levels of difficulty and incorporate distinct checkpoints and mystery games. It takes about 1 ½ to 3 hours to complete all the mazes.
The fact that Maze Craze was voted one of the top 10 favorite mazes in the state of Ohio in 2019 should tell you that you’re in for a fabulous time when you visit.
Other great activities here include: a kiddie zipline, straw pyramids, corn hole, gemstone mining, a corn cannon, a tire playground, hayrides, barrel train rides and jumping balls.
Exploration Acres Corn Maze in Lafayette, Indiana
This year, Northwest Indiana’s largest corn maze is featuring a patriotic “United We Stand” theme with a 18-acre layout that depicts the iconic Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima image (six United States Marines raising the U.S. flag atop Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima in the final stages of the Pacific War). The maze honors the 75th anniversary of the war’s end with a bold “75 YRS” and pays tribute to the four branches of the military with their representative emblems.
Comprising nine miles of paths and four separate mazes, this awe-inspiring challenge features 28 hidden posts, which participants mark on their provided maze map as they find them. The payoff for their discoveries: robust discounts and freebies from local businesses.
Visitors will also want to roam the 11-acre pumpkin patch and select their favorites among the 38 varieties of pumpkins and gourds that grow here. Then explore the whole farm on a tractor-pulled hay wagon. Other activities include everything from a straw mound, playset and sand pile to pedal cars, pony swings and a shelled corn bin.
Richardson Adventure Farm Corn Maze in Spring Grove, Illinois
The “world’s largest” and stunningly intricate corn maze celebrates the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day with a powerful environmental statement about the need to respect and care for our planet. The maze features the words “Earth Day – 50 yrs” above its core design: the planet Earth cradled in the hands of a person. Adjunct imagery includes a frog symbolizing the diversity of animal life and an outdoor scene with a sun beaming over a mountain, a waterfall, lake, trees, plants and a stream. You’ll be mindful of the larger planet as you wend your way through one of the food treasures it offers—live corn.
The 33-acre array comprises four distinct mazes, along with 24 hidden checkpoints and three bridges; all await discovery and markup on a map handout. To cater to various age ranges, the farm offers five different maze games, lasting from 10 minutes to 1 ½ hours—participants can choose what suits them best. To get a bird’s eye view of the corn maze, climb the 50-foot observation tower on the property.
The farm also offers wagon and train rides, a carousel, a zip line, zorbing, pig races, a petting zoo, a jumping pillow, pedal karts, gemstone mining, air cannons and a paintball gallery.
Don’t leave before exploring the pumpkin patch and choosing a perfect Jack-O-Lantern-in-the-making.