The Calgary Corn Maze has been offering family-friendly fun out of southeast Calgary since 2008 and the operators don’t plan on stopping any time soon.
This fall, the weather has been anything but orthodox and it’s been a struggle for the maze.
“It’s been a challenge,” said Mark Muschka, owner and operator of the Calgary Corn Maze.
“You still do all the same things, marketing, advertising, you just have to give it time.”
Muschka said that the challenges of the fall weather were predated by the serious fire smoke that hindered Calgary’s air quality this past summer.
“July was a nice month in terms of weather, but it’s usually our lowest historical attendance.”
Attendance at the maze depends on weather and this fall it’s been cold and foggy but Muschka wasn’t worried.
He says that once people get used to the cold fall weather the attendance will rise. “People are not prepared for the cold of fall but they will come eventually.”
Deanna Muschka, Mark’s wife and co-owner of the Calgary Corn Maze, said that had the weather been warmer and drier, the attendance would have been five times higher than what it was.
“If the weather was nice there’s be hundreds of guests here every weekend,” said Deanna Muschka. “There would be 3,000-4,000 people per day.”
The Muschkas said that what helps get the maze through low attendance rates is the staff they have working for them.
“Our staff is like family here,” said Mark Muschka.
“One of our employees has been working here for 10 years and occasionally her husband comes around to help out.”
The day to day employees at the maze handle cleaning up after the animals, as well as feeding them. They also handle much of the customer service side of the maze, along with Deanna.
“They’re the faces everyone sees when they come to the maze.”
The Calgary Corn Maze handles various types of events every year. They cater corporate groups often, as well as hosting family social functions.
“We’ve been told that many of our family social functions are the best attended family gatherings throughout the year, including Christmas parties,” said Mark Muschka.
The maze will close just before Halloween, on Oct. 28th and won’t be hosting much in terms of Halloween events.
They close just before Halloween because “usually people have their Halloween plans already,” said Mark Muschka.
“We don’t haunt the maze at all because we’re really good at focusing on family friendly.”
If the weather was nice there’s be hundreds of guests here every weekend. There would be 3,000-4,000 people per day. – Deanna Muschka
Mark Muschka said that the low attendance this year could affect the ability to develop the maze for next year. However, he also said that, “We’re always adding, and building. We want to make this place bigger, better.”