It must be fall in LA: the nights are (finally) getting cooler and the days shorter. It’s time to start getting those Halloween costumes in order and sipping warm drinks. But nothing else says fall quite like a good, old-fashioned corn maze—with a few modern twists. Get everyone in their walking shoes and take a mini road trip to one of these amazing local farms right in our backyard. Scroll down to discover where your kids can become children of the corn.
photo: Forneris Farms
Forneris Farms in the San Fernando Valley prides itself on being the “original” corn maze of Southern California. These folks take their corn maze seriously with 4 acres of corn stalks that tower of your head and encourage everyone to “get lost on the farm.” This year’s maze has a “Country Farm” theme and if your family is feeling energetic and witty you can also try to solve the 12 riddles along the way; they call them the CORNundrums at Forneris Farms. If your witty sidekicks solve all 12 they can enter their riddle card for a chance to win a grand prize.
Besides the maze, the farm’s Harvest Festival hosts attractions like a farm frolic area and a tractor pulled train ride and a beautiful field of u-pick pumpkins. The weekends welcome pony rides, a petting zoo and live entertainment. Attractions are cash only but there is an ATM on site. The Harvest Festival and Corn Maze run from September 30-October 31.
15200 Rinaldi St.
photo: Cynthia Ballard
Underwood Family Farms
Underwood Family Farms in Moorpark is a great destination for Angelenos looking to soak in some nature and experience picking your own fruits and veggies. Get ready for an adventure as you enter the corn maze under the rainbow. Once inside, young explorers discover a story they can read as they wander the maze as well as a finger coloring game called “Finger Funnies.” Beware: there are signs throug out that are intended to trick the family. Once you all make it out there is a hay pyramid where your corn conquerors can climb and play. Besides the maze the festival is full of fun activities including a pumpkin patch, food vendors and play areas. The weekends welcome extra activities: ring the family for lives bands and a tractor drawn wagon ride. Also check out their website for special events including an Antique Tractor Day and Western weekend. The festival opens Saturday September 30 and runs through Tuesday October 31.
3370 Sunset Valley Rd.
photo: Neon Tommy via Flickr
Cal Poly Pomona’s Pumpkin Festival
Maybe you didn’t know it, but Cal Poly Pomona boasts one of the largest Pumpkin Patches in Southern California as part of its agricultural program. There are over 70,000 pumpkins in this patch and every one—no matter the size—is just $5! On October 7 and 8 the pumpkin patch will host its 25th annual Pumpkin Festival, which includes their puzzling corn maze. This maze is a twisting labyrinth of fun with corn stalks over 12 feet high. If your family manages to make it out, everyone will receive a button naming them a “maze magician.” The festival also includes a petting farm, horse rides and lots of fun, interactive play that revolves around the notion of celebrating California agriculture. The festival is just two days: October 7 & 8 from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. The pumpkin patch is open every day after the festival from October 10-31.
4102 S. University Dr.
photo: Brian Wilkins via Flickr
Tanaka Farms in Irvine is full of year round fun. The farm’s fall pumpkin patch is u-pick and that golden fruit is waiting on the vine to be picked. But you’re really here for the corn maze, which is open through October 31 and is included with admission to the pumpkin patch. Little farmers can roam free, get a bit lost (with your supervision) and then make their way out in the end. Afterwards, reward them with a trip to the petting zoo. In addition to the corn maze, Tanaka Farms hosts a Harvest Festival every weekend where the family can enjoy pumpkins cannons, ATV rides and voting in the scarecrow contest. The Tanaka Farm Pumpkin Patch and Harvest Festival runs through October 31.
5380 3/4 University Dr.
Big Horse Feed and Mercantile
If you’re looking to go big, Head to the Big Horse Feed and Mercantile down in Temecula and get lost in their whopper of an 11 acre maze—the largest in Southern California. The corn maze and pumpkin patch are open every day of the week and the Harvest Festival is full of family activities every weekend. Besides the massive corn maze your fall crazed adventurers can enjoy a hay ride, jumping on a giant pillow jump, face painting and a corn cannon. Your smallest wanderers can even enjoy a mini-maze, with puts a lot less pressure on everyone. Young animal lovers might want to plan to come for the special kids and pets costume contest on October 29. The Harvest Festival and Maze runs from September 30-October 31.
33320 Temecula Parkway
photo: Joe Erlewein via Flickr
Tapia Brothers Farm
If it’s a challenge you’re looking for, Tapia Brothers Pumpkin Patch offers and huge corn maze (it’s housed in its own lot across from the farm itself) complete with a map and trivia questions. Once the family has mastered the maze (or before, for that matter) small fry can enjoy a play area, bounce houses, a hay wagon ride, fresh roasted corn and, of course, their pick of fresh pumpkins to bring home. There are also weekend only horse rides. The corn maze and fall festivities run from October 6-31.
5251 Hayvenhurst Ave.
Murray Family Farms
If the family is up for an all-day adventure, pack up the car with plenty of snacks and entertainment and drive to Murray Family Farms in Bakersfield. This farm prides itself on sustainable practices and a well-crafted corn maze. If you’re going to make the drive, plan to spend the whole day and the kids can enjoy a hayride, butterfly house, a huge jumping pillow and a 150 foot slide. On the weekends you can add corn cannons and pumpkin crafts to that list. Be sure to visit the pumpkin patch where the family can choose the perfect candidate for the Halloween jack-o’-lantern. The farm also opens the corn maze at night for “Flashlights in the Corn Maze” on Fridays and Saturdays in October if your wee ones aren’t so wee anymore. While you’re there be sure to check out all of the certified organic produce available on the farm. The October Fun Fest runs the entire month of October. Check their website for hours.
6700 General Beale Rd.
Do you have favorite waze to lose yourself in a maze? Let us know in the comment section!