DIXON, Calif. (KTXL) — While the American Midwest is known for its endless fields of corn, the world’s largest corn maze is actually in a small town outside of California’s capital.
Cool Patch Pumpkins was founded in 2011 by Matt Cooley in Dixon, California, after his kids started selling pumpkins on the side of their family pumpkin field. Since then, the pumpkin patch and corn maze have been featured in publications across the country and even earned a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records.
In fact, the corn maze was featured in the Guinness Book of World Records both in 2007 and 2014, as the world’s largest corn maze. In 2014 the maze was 60 acres, which gave them the world record, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.
This year the maze is 40 acres and is built from over 3 million stalks of corn.
“There are roughly 3,659,040 stalks of corn….the corn is harvested at the end of the season as silage for feed for local cows,” Tayler Cooley said.
According to Cool Patch Pumpkins, the maze is different every year and completely unique. This year the theme of the maze is farming and the dedication it takes to be a modern-day farmer.
“Many people do not realize that Cool Patch is a working farm,” Cooley said. “The land is used year-round for multiple crops – pumpkins and corn are just one season of them. Everything you see out at our patch is brought in only a couple weeks before opening day. You’ll often see tractors working as you explore the patch.”
This year, inside the maze, there is a hidden image. While navigating through the maze, people can try to figure out the design they are trying to solve.
Last year the theme was military appreciation in honor of the 20th anniversary of 9/11.
It can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours to complete the maze, depending on how much preparation you do beforehand.
If you get lost in the maze, the first thing to remember is to not call 911.
“It can be stressful and intimidating to get lost, but you are never trapped,” Cooley said. “Simply pick a row of corn and follow the furrow down the row until you pop out on a side of the maze. Then follow the maze around until you land in the front.”
You must be 18 or older to buy tickets to the corn maze and those under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
There are various other activities available at Cool Patch Pumpkins.
“As a family-run farm, we pride ourselves in being a family-friendly patch,” Cooley said. “Our corn maze is one part of what we offer at the patch. We also have you pick pumpkins, gourds and squash. We offer hay rides, a hay castle, giant corn bath and playhouses for younger children. We have delicious food and drinks and more.”
Cool Patch Pumpkins opens this year on Saturday, Sept. 24, and will stay open until Oct. 31. They are open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily, weather permitting.