We're the only maze within about a 100-mile radius. The nearest ones are in Belleville and Sikeston, Mo. I thought this would be something both kids and adults could enjoy, especially when school groups come here in the fall to our pumpkin patch. Bandy said he got the idea on a Little Egypt theme when seeing some inserts in The Southern Illinoisan early last spring. "Southern Illinois is known as Little Egypt, so why not? I eventually contacted Precision Mazes and they cut the maze on July 6," he said. "It took them about four and one half hours to completion. Bandy said he's a had a few dry runs with kids in the maze since it was built, but will not officially open the maze to the public until Labor Day weekend of 2005.
"It takes about an hour or so to complete the maze, which is about three miles in length, but you can cut your walk short if you like. There are other places to exit. So far, the response has been tremendous. I'm already making plans to develop a different theme maze next year. To spice things up, Bandy said he will distribute 10 signs throughout the seven-foot-high corn maze, each equipped with a trivia question. Bandy said employees and volunteers would also be on hand to help escort walkers through the maze, if necessary. Bandy's also has a play barn for smaller children with a down-sized pair of mazes, one made of straw. Bandy is assisted by his wife, Johna, and brother, Donnie. Bandy's Pumpkin Patch and corn maze are located a half mile west of Johnston City on Pumpkin Patch Road just off the Herrin/Johnston City Road.