Corn maze salutes military at Gross Farms

Oct. 06, 2013 @ 05:02 AM

The Gross family dipped their toes into the agritourism business more than a decade ago and they are not looking back.

Gross Farms is in full swing this fall with its annual corn maze, pumpkin patch, hayrides, games and play area for families. The festive activities are open from 7-10 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday and 1-6 p.m. Sunday through Nov. 3 at Gross Farms, located at 1606 Pickett Road. General admission is $3, $10 for the corn maze, $5 for hayrides, $10 for the playground area or $16 for combo ticket. 

"We started this in 2002," said John Gross, owner of the farm. "We needed to diversify our crops so we started up the corn maze."

The activities grew and now the farm hosts private tours and field trips during the week to help children learn about life on the farm, the plant's growth cycle and other agricultural aspects, he said.

"We want to bring back memories from people's childhoods," Gross said. "There are some kids here who've never been on a farm. Some adults, too. We're trying to teach them about farm life while they have a good time."

The corn maze is military themed and it thanks veterans for their services. Military families are frequent guests of the farm, Gross said, and they wanted to do something to show their gratitude toward military men and women.

Kathy Gross, John's sister, oversees the staffing at the farm and said her favorite part is seeing new faces each day and meeting new people.

"Family farm, family fun," she said, referencing the farm's motto. "It's a good fun place to bring your family to have an enjoyable time."

Harley and Marissa Nelson came from Cumberland County to visit the farm Saturday with their 13-month-old daughter, Jasmine.

"It's a lot of fun," Marissa said as they rode on the hayride around the farm. "Hot, but it's been fun."

Jasmine's favorite part, according to Harley, was looking through the Gross Farm pumpkin patch to select a pumpkin to take home and the tricycle game. 

Debra McNair traveled from Alamance County to the farm with her daughter and granddaughter, 4-year-old Emery.   

"We are having a great time," she said. "Emery's enjoying everything, and I enjoy watching her play."

Justice Battenberg, 15, and her father Jack, said with pumpkins in hand that they enjoyed the corn maze the most.

"It is definitely a kid-friendly place," Jack said. "It's a good place for a family and we will be back."



What: Gross Farm's Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch

When: 7-10 p.m. Friday, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday and 1-6 p.m. Sunday through Nov. 3

Where: Gross Farms, located at 1606 Pickett Road.

Admission: $3 for general admission, $10 for corn maze, $5 for hayrides, $10 for playground area or $16 for combo ticket.

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