Adventure Acres Family Farm and Corn Maze and Community Blood Center (CBC) have partnered in a tribute to heroes expressed in the 2012 season corn maze design. It features John Glenn in a spacesuit next to his Atlas rocket and Friendship 7 Mercury spacecraft. An astronaut emerges from his capsule for a spacewalk in a tribute to the NASA space program. And nestled next to these images is the CBC blood drop logo above the words “Be a Hero – Donate.”
Adventure Acres will celebrate the Grand Opening of the “Be a Hero – Donate” maze season with a fall festival event Saturday, Sept. 15 from 12 noon to 12 midnight. Adventure Acres is located at 784 South Alpha Bellbrook Road in Bellbrook.
The family farm is a family affair for Hope Dawson and her parents Bruce and Tammy Dawson who live nearby and manage Adventure Acres for owner Dr. Ed Martinek. The fall season is barely over when Bruce begins planning the next year’s design. The 50th anniversary of the Feb. 20, 1962 mission to orbit the earth inspired the tribute to John Glenn. “We like to partner with a local charity every year,” said Bruce. “I thought of John Glenn as an American hero, the whole NASA program, and blood donors as heroes.”
He sketched his design and sent it to MazePlay, a family-owned business in Idaho that designs, maps and carves out more than 100 corn mazes a year using a tractor equipped with a GPS guidance system. In July the Dawson’s got 24 hour notice that the MazePlay tractor was on its way. The cutting went into the night and by morning the “Be a Hero – Donate” design was born.
The summer heat wave and drought conditions were unkind to farms across the country, and especially hard on the corn crop – and corn maze business – in the Midwest. But Adventure Acres battled Mother Nature with well-timed planting and fertilizing of drought resistant corn. The “Be a Hero – Donate” maze is smaller than the original design, but there will be a corn maze season and a crop. “We’re going to get decent corn out of our field,” said Tammy Dawson. “The maze cutter was amazed. He said it was the best corn he’s seen.”
Adventure Acres welcomes visitors to explore the new maze during the Grand Opening Saturday, Sept. 15 from 12 noon to 12 midnight. Hope Dawson has again planned a fall festival schedule of activities with food and craft vendors, face-painting, clowns, a bounce house and inflatable obstacle course, along with fire trucks from the Sugarcreek Fire Department and a special visit from the Miami Valley Hospital CareFlight helicopter and ICU ambulance.
Adventure Acres operating hours now through October are Thursday 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., Friday 6 p.m. to midnight; Saturday noon to midnight; and Sunday noon to 6 p.m. Admission is $9.75 for ages 13-and-older; $6.75 for children age four to 12; and $7.75 for seniors. There is also a $2 military discount and coupons are available online at myAdventureAcres.com.