Wagner?s Farmland Experience

October 5, 2009

Corrales farm cultivates tradition

 
Last updated: 10/05/09 9:58pm

Harvest-time visitors can get lost and find their inner children at Wagner’s Farmland Experience in Corrales.

The farm, which is owned and operated by Roxanne Wagner and her husband, features a corn maze, apple orchards, pumpkin patches, hay rides and a farmers market, Wagner said.

“We give an appreciation of life on a farm,” she said. “(Visitors) tend to be more supportive of the farmer.”

Wagner said the six-acre corn maze is the farm’s most notable draw. She said they opened the maze about seven years ago at the suggestion of visiting school teachers.

“We used to get quite a few field trips from children,” she said. “We’d tour them around the market. The teachers wanted a more out-in-the-field experience, and so we started taking them out to the pumpkin patch and into the corn fields, and it evolved from there.”

The maze’s shape changes every year, she said. This year the maze pays tribute to Rio Grande wildlife, as shapes of a coyote and a turtle are visible from the air, Wagner said.

She said the farm features other kid-friendly attractions, such as a petting zoo with baby goats and miniature horses.

For adults, the farm has a farmers market that offers fresh produce, including watermelons, green chile and tomatoes. There are also educational classes about the historical relevance and culture of farming.

“That’s the cool thing about this: It’s an activity for a whole family,” Wagner said. “Everyone seems to have a good time.”

For the brave, Wagner said the maze remains open past dark on Saturday night. She said people are free to wander through the maze under the starry Corrales sky.

“We have storytelling, hot chocolate, marshmallows and a bonfire,” she said. “We usually get the older kids then.”

In addition to its tourist attractions, the Wagner farm is a full-time business with livestock and crops.

“It’s tough being a farmer but this has been one way to supplement our income,” Wagner said. “A lot of farmers have to sell off their land because they just can’t make it farming.”

Eve Thompson, a regular visitor to the farm and a teacher’s aide at Sandia Day School, said the farm never fails to catch the interest of school children.

“The students really love it, from kindergarten to the eighth grade,” Thompson said. “Just being there, it’s such a nice atmosphere, and it gives the kids a chance to run.”

Thomas said that she also enjoys the quaint feel of the farm.

“It’s just a beautiful place to be, there in the heart of Corrales,” she said. “It’s a very relaxed atmosphere for adults, too.”

Wagner said the farm’s ultimate goal is to promote the tradition of the farming lifestyle.

“We feel that we are doing it to keep farming alive,” Wagner said. “It keeps things looking nice for the residents and passers-by.”

*Wagner’s Farmland Experience
6445 Corrales Road*
$6.50 for Adults, $4.50 Children 3-11
WagnersFarmlandExperience.com

Published October 5, 2009 in Culture