There was a pumpkin patch at the entrance, with countless pumpkins around.
Did you know that the pumpkin is native to North America? In fact, scientists say that if it hadn’t been for the domestication of pumpkins by early North Americans some 10,000 years ago, our modern pumpkins and squashes would have become extinct.
Some folks say the pumpkin is a vegetable. However, the pumpkin is actually a fruit. Pumpkins, after all, carry seeds — just like apples, strawberries, peaches, watermelon, and tomatoes! There’s even a movement that wants to recognize the pumpkin as the national fruit of the United States.
Pumpkins are highly nutritious! They are full of beta-carotene and have high volumes of good fiber.
We next went to the corn maze’s entrance.
Here’s a view of the corn in the maze.
We had to learn the rules first before entering the corn maze.
The Big Horse Corn Maze in Temecula, California is reputed to be the largest corn maze in Southern California! We were rather excited to see how long it would take us to solve the mysteries of the corn maze and, in turn, find the exit.
So, which way do you think we should go?
We found a lookout station at the back of the corn maze. We asked the person manning the lookout station to take a photo of the corn maze with our camera. Here’s a view of part of the corn maze from the lookout station.
We asked him, “So, will you tell us what direction we should take, based on what you see from up there in your lookout station?
One of the great things about the Big Horse Corn Maze is that there are guides at various stations within the corn maze. The guides can help folks wend their way through the maze. This photo shows one of the corn maze guides, as seen from the lookout station.
Here’s a picture of one of the numerous corn within the maze. In Native American lore, there were three crops relied upon extensively: corn, pumpkins (squash), and beans. These three crops were termed the Three Sisters.
And here we are once more racing through the corn maze as we try to solve its labyrinth-like mysteries to get to the exit.
Besides the corn maze, another feature of the Harvest Festival was the pillow jump. After we found the corn maze exit, we also made sure to enjoy leaping and bouncing on the pillow jump.
We next watched some of the bigger kids wall-climb at the Big Horse Corn Maze Harvest Festival.
Then it was time to watch the Knockster Globe Challenge.
Knockster Globes appear like New Zealand’s zorbing globes. But folks essentially “wear” Knockster Globes then utilize them to bump into others to try and make them roll on the ground.
Of course, it helps to be a wee bit taller to fit into a Knockster Globe.
We next returned to the Big Horse Corn Maze Harvest Festival‘s pumpkin patch.
Did you know that pumpkin seeds are usually planted in April or May of each year? They then take 90 to 120 days to grow big enough for harvesting each autumn.
The first European to ever document anything about the pumpkin was the French explorer Jacques Cartier. At the time he referred to it as a gros melon, which translates into English as “plump melon.”
Over time the French started calling it the pompion, which in turn led the British to modify it into pumpion. Eventually American colonists chose to call the fruit the pumpkin because it was easier to pronounce. The name has stuck ever since.
With over 80 percent of the US’s pumpkin crop being grown there, the state of Illinois is the largest producer of pumpkins in the nation. At a distant second is California.
There are seven US cities so far that claim to be a “Pumpkin Capital.” They are: Morton in Illinois, Half Moon Bay in California, Circleville in Ohio, Floydada in Texas, Barnesville in Ohio, Keene in New Hampshire, and Spring Hope in North Carolina. Morton is where Libby’s has a pumpkin processing plant that produces the majority of all canned pumpkins used for pies and food. And, since 1973, Half Moon Bay has hosted a Pumpkin Weigh-off Festival. Circleville’s annual Pumpkin Show is the oldest and largest food festival in Ohio; it dates as far back as 1903. Floydada grows the most pumpkins per acre. Barnesville is known for the large pumpkins that grow there. Keene holds the Guinness Record for the largest number of lit jack-o’-lanterns in one spot. And, Spring Hope held the first “National Pumpkin Festival” back in 1971.
Speaking of jack-o’-lanterns, in the olden days they were carved out of turnips in Celtic Ireland and Scotland. Then when Irish and Scottish immigrants arrived in the US they found that pumpkins were better for carving. And, voila! The pumpkin became the go-to vessel for carving autumn jack-o’-lanterns.
Indeed, pumpkins have proven to be invaluable because of their versatile use. They can be found in desserts, stews, side dishes, and entrees. Plus, their seeds have medicinal properties as well.
We had a wonderful time at the Big Horse Corn Maze Harvest Festival. We hope you, too, can experience an autumn harvest celebration that includes an amazing corn maze for you to solve. So, shall we start another round of the corn maze?