KUNA — Good news for those of us who like to get lost in the Farmstead Corn Maze every year.
The Maze has now found a new home!
After 22 seasons of getting Idahoans lost among corn stalks every autumn, The Farmstead Corn Maze and Pumpkin Festival has found its new home -- at 2500 South Eagle Road in Kuna.
“The 178-acre farm location offers a rural setting, room to grow, and the opportunity for long-term improvements that will enhance visitors' experiences,” said Farmstead co-owner Hillary Lowe.
Since its inception as Idaho's Original Corn Maze back in 1997, The Farmstead has operated at four different locations on future development land in southern Meridian, most recently at the corner of I-84 and Eagle Road.
Last year, the future of the Maze was in doubt when it was announced that the property off Eagle Road had been sold.
“High visibility locations have helped transform The Farmstead from a grass-roots novelty corn maze to a reliable tradition, but those same locations have also left visitors exposed to increasing congestion and development pressure even as they seek an authentic Idaho agritourism experience,” Lowe explained.
At more than triple the size, the Kuna farm offers room to grow and a rural destination consistent with the farm-centered experience which is a hallmark of the Farmstead.
The Farmstead is owned by Jim and Hillary Lowe of Kuna and serves as a diversified part of their farm business. As a college student studying Agri-business, Jim saw that starting a farm from scratch would require diversification and niche markets.
So the Lowes scrimped by with inexpensive equipment on leased land, to overcome the major barriers to starting a farm. Working together with their three children, the Lowes grew their farm production alongside the Farmstead agritourism -- until they were able to buy land in the Kuna area.
“Although The Farmstead has grown to a sizable operation now -- requiring a team of managers and more than 200 seasonal employees -- it still retains its "bootstrap" DNA as a family business hatched from the ground up,” Lowe stated.
“This move of The Farmstead -- from leased land to an owned farm -- is the realization of decades worth of dreams for (us) and the team,” she added.
Over the years, The Maze and its unique annual designs have been featured in local and national media reports.
The move to Kuna is also a rebirth of sorts -- and introduces more opportunities for the future of The Farmstead. “Additional acreage will allow for proper crop rotations, room to add attractions, and space to accommodate increased attendance. Land ownership will allow facility improvements in years to come,” Lowe stated.
The added value of the new location starts now with the introduction of a VIP booklet for loyal customers, she pointed out Season Pass holders will receive a package of free and discounted admissions, food, and attractions to use throughout the fall 2019 season. The annual Season Pass Sale is on now (for a limited time) at FarmsteadFestival.com.