Editor's Note: The following is a news release issued by the Mercer County administration.
Getting lost in Howell Farm’s 12-foot tall corn maze is for the birds according to some … but not for residents of Mercer County’s Wildlife Center.
Fawns, chipmunks, raccoons and other creatures rehabilitated at the center are beneficiaries of the corn grown in the maze, thanks to an annual harvest event hosted by the Mercer County Park Commission.
This year’s event will take place on Saturday, Oct. 13, when the public is invited to the Howell Farm Corn Maze to see wildlife presentations, enjoy hayrides and children’s crafts, and help volunteers from the center shell and grind corn for animal feed.
At nearby Howell Living History Farm visitors can pick field corn, tour barns and fields, and learn why farmers have long considered owls, bats, swallows and other wildlife beneficial to the agricultural operations.
Wildlife presentations by the Mercer County Wildlife Center will take place in the corn maze courtyard at 1 and 3 p.m. During each presentation, Wildlife Center Director Diane Nickerson will introduce visitors to non-releasable animals used in the Center’s public education program, and will explain how the Center works to rehabilitate and release injured and displaced wildlife.
Although not a corn eater, a barn owl saved by the Wildlife Center was the inspiration for this year’s corn maze theme, which features wildlife beneficial to farmers. When seen from above, the maze’s three miles of pathways make a picture of the owl flying over Howell Farm’s historic barn.
Traditional billboard artist Pat Pasquito of Lawrence Township - who has hand painted each of the entrance signs to Howell Farm’s corn maze since the 1997 “Amazing Barn Raising Maze” - will be present in the courtyard from 2 to 5 p.m. painting children’s faces with beneficial birds, mammals and insects pictured in the maze.
Admission to the maze courtyard and wildlife presentations is free. Charges for wagon rides, crafts and face painting benefit the Wildlife Center.
Entrance to the maze is $8 for ages 10 and up; $6 for ages 5-9 and free for children 4 and under. Maze hours are noon to 8 p.m.
The maze is located at 17 Valley Rd., just off Rt. 29, two miles south of Lambertville, N.J., 08530.
Howell Living History Farm is located one mile east of the maze off Valley Road, at 17 Wooden’s Lane, Lambertville, N.J. 08530. Hours are from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Parking and admission is free.
Howell Living History Farm, the Howell Farm Corn Maze and The Mercer County Wildlife Center are facilities of the Mercer County Park Commission. For information, call the farm office at 609-737-3299 or visit websites www.mercercounty.org or www.howellfarm.org.