Maze Craze: How the maze is made

If you’ve ever been to Maze Craze at Galloway Farm in Columbus County, you know that they’re known for their elaborately shaped mazes.

You may remember last years shape read “Discover Columbus County.”

2020 maze design (Source: Maze Craze at Galloway Farm)

After the first year the maze was open to the public, Alma Galloway, owner of Maze Craze at Galloway Farm realized there was an opportunity for local businesses to be able to advertise through the design of the maze.

Here are some of the other designs the maze has had over the years.

(Source: Maze Craze)
(Source: Maze Craze)
(Source: Maze Craze)
(Source: Maze Craze)

This year, Penguin Radio Station, The Dude Radio Station, and Port City Daily all expressed interest in advertising in the maze. However, Galloway wasn’t sure how they were going to be able to fit all their logos in the design.

“I made the suggestion that we put the likeness of an image of an artist in the maze – someone that would represent the genres of music that they play on their radio stations,” Galloway said. “And so they came back to me with two names and I’m a huge fan of one of the names and that was Lukas Nelson.”

Aside from being a huge Lukas Nelson fan, Galloway also thought the design would be appropriate because Nelson has a small tie to Southeastern, NC.

“A couple years ago he did a benefit concert after Hurricane Florence and gave all the money back to hurricane relief for Florence and Mayor Saffo gave him the key to the city,” Galloway said. “So I think a lot of people in Wilmington can resonate with his image and they know who he is and that’s why we went with that.”

So how does the design actually come to life? Galloway made it clear that they “don’t go out there with a mush mower and cut all the pathways, like some people think,” but it’s much more complicated.

They hire a company called Precision Mazes who specialize in designing custom mazes and uses a very accurate GPS system to complete the design.

“It’s almost like playing a video game,” Galloway explained. “You’re sitting in the seat of the tractor. It tells you exactly where to mow, where to cut, where to stop, where to back up, everything, and it’s amazing to watch.

Galloway said from start to finish, the design took about 8 hours to complete this year. The longest a design has taken was about 11 hours.

This years’ maze design (Source: Maze Craze)

Her favorite part of the design process is connecting with local businesses and forming a relationship with them.

“I’ve missed my calling, I should’ve been in marketing, and I love it,” Galloway said. “It sets me on fire every year.”

Their hours are Tue – Thurs by reservation only – call for info, Fri. 10 a.m. – 9 p.m., Sat. 10 a.m. – 9 p.m., and Sun. 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.

For more information, visit their website here.

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Kristin Crawford

Kristin Crawford joined WECT as a Digital Video Content Producer in August 2016 after graduating from the University of North Carolina, Wilmington. She studied Communication Studies with a focus in TV Production and Media.