Depiction of Buddy Holly forms challenging cornfield maze
By Ray Westbrook | AVALANCHE-JOURNAL
James and Patti Simpson will pull back the curtain of their latest production Sept. 10 when they introduce an outline of a singer known to almost all West Texans — Buddy Holly.
This outline, fashioned into a 12-acre cornfield maze two miles east of Shallowater on FM 1294, tests the ingenuity of those who can find their way — or feel their way — through a labyrinth of corridors.
It can only be seen in its entirety from the air, but the object is to walk through the pathways and back to the outside without running into a wall of corn.
Despite the drought, the Simpsons, who carve a different maze each year, have been able to produce one of their best crops by utilizing an efficient drip irrigation system.
Referring to the time without rain, Patti said, “It has not affected us in the fact that our corn turned out well. Yes, we had to water constantly, but because we are only 12 acres of corn, and it is under a drip system, it’s been doable.”
She added, “Drip irrigation has been a huge factor. With it being underground, you don’t lose evaporation — it’s a very conservative way to water.”
Guests from across West Texas have tested their skills by seeing if they can walk through the field without asking for directions.
Tickets to the maze are $8, or $4 for those who prefer to stay outside for other attractions.
The project, launched by the farmers about 10 years ago under the name of At’l Do Farms, annually features a design produced by eliminating various portions of the corn. What remains is an intricate network of passageways formed by the growing corn.
The cornfield, which has been turned into a kind of amusement park, also offers a hayride to Pumpkin Hollow, a corn cannon, cow train and pumpkins for sale at prices ranging from $1 to $15.
The park is closed Mondays except for Oct. 31.
It offers this schedule for the public: 5 to 9 p.m. Fridays; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturdays; and 2 to 9 p.m. Sundays. Reservations may be made for school field trips from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, and 5 to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday for groups.
Information is available by calling 787-4222 or 787-4241, and email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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■ What: At’l Do Farms’ Maize.
■ Where: Two miles east of Shallowater on FM 1294.
■ Optional route: From Fourth Street and Frankford Avenue, go seven miles north to FM 1294, west for less than a mile.
■ Open to public: 5-9 p.m. Fridays; 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Saturdays; 2-9 p.m. Sundays.
■ By reservation: 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday for school field trips; 5-9 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday for groups.
■ Tickets: Maze admission, $8; non-maze admission, $4; children of 4 and younger, free.
■ Campfire reservation: $25.
■ Other attractions: Hayride, corn cannon, cow train.
■ Information: Phone 787-4222 or 787-4241; email email@example.com.
Lubbock’s most famous native son would have turned 75 Wednesday. To honor Buddy Holly and his legacy, The A-J will be running the following stories:
■ Sunday: “Not Fade Away” — Phil Everly, Graham Nash and a host of others tell A-J Entertainment Editor Bill Kerns why Buddy’s music remains relevant today.
■ Monday: “Rave On” — How his birthday will be celebrated in Hollywood.
■ Tuesday: “Words of Love” — How Lubbock plans to fete its favorite native son.
■ Wednesday: “Crying, Waiting, Hoping” — The man responsible for Buddy’s Hollywood Star tells how a dream became reality.
■ Thursday: “Oh Boy!” — Coverage of Buddy’s star on the Walk of Fame; Lubbock’s soiree.
■ Friday: “Well … All Right” — Coverage of an all-star concert supporting a second tribute album released this year.
If you miss a day, all these stories and more will be in our Buddy Holly Archives at http://www.buddyhollyarchives.com/.