The River Maze Returns For 12th Season At Ocoee

Wednesday, September 21, 2016 - by Dianne Fetzer

“Growin’, Growin’, Growin’ on the River” is the theme this year at the River Maze. On the banks of the Ocoee River, one can have lots of fun on a real farm.  

The intricate design for the corn maze at The River Maze is exceptionally challenging, but organizers have improved the opportunities for people to have more fun than ever before outside the corn maze.

If one's top choice is our then maze, then one should get ready to get lost as officials have carved out our corn maze to give tribute to the top ten crops grown in the United States. The design features a big thrashing machine, (a combine), stalks of corn, a pumpkin patch, and wheat plants.

The River Maze is fortunate to have its own crops this year in an unseasonably dry year. So, yes, home grown pumpkins will be found on a ride to the pumpkin patch. The scenic beauty and many other attractions will be a rewarding experience for anyone going to the River Maze.

To celebrate the grand opening on Saturday, The River Maze is partnering with CASA of Bradley and Polk counties, to host “CASA Day at The River Maze”. On Saturday, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Bradley and Polk Counties will partner to help raise funds for advocacy of children involved in court proceedings in Polk County. On this day, $3 from each ticket sold will be donated to CASA and their efforts to expand their services in Polk County.

CASA Day at The River Maze will feature several exclusive opening day attractions. An assortment of vendors from Tennessee and North Georgia will be on-site selling handiworks and refreshments. There will also be radio station coverage, as well as live music in the evening. Folksy husband and wife duo Drakeford will take the stage at 7 PM, followed by Flatlands Jump, a band that effortlessly blends hip-hop beats with a rustic Americana sound, who are set to perform at 8 PM. As always, traditional activities will be open such as the namesake corn maze, interactive pumpkin patch, and tractor hayrides.

The River Maze will give visitors the chance to "get lost" Sept. 24 through Oct. 30. Hours are Friday 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Saturday 11 9:30 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Field trip hours, during weekdays, are available by reservation. The River Maze is three miles east of Ocoee, Tn., on US Highway 64.  Cost is $10 for ages 3 and up. This includes all mazes and the hayride. In addition, cow train rides, corn cannon shots, face painting, pumpkin painting, and “water wars” will be available through the purchase of tokens.  For those who want pumpkins, they will be for sale.  If visitors want to come for pumpkins only, the trip to the pumpkin patch will be $5 along with the purchase of pumpkins. Discounts are offered for groups and field trips. For more information or to make reservations, call 423.650.0710 or visit

The River Maze experience offers something for everyone.

  • Exciting attractions this year are the “Jump Pad, the two 30 foot tube slides, a Spookley – themed timed maze (Tag with Spookley and Friends), Barnyard Basketball and Football, Tether Ball and more…
  • The River Maze also has a maze carved in a field of soybeans.  It features the nursery rhyme, “Hey Diddle, Diddle”. The little ones will really enjoy this.

  • There are also two little mazes, “The American Maze” and “The No Left Turn Maze.” 
  • Interactive “passports” are available for groups and the general public. Each contains ten questions that quiz the user on a chosen subject, and those who answer the questions correctly will receive clues that guide them along the correct path to the exit. Subjects include: sports, boy scouting, girl scouting, scriptural, American history, interactive, teambuilding, and agriculture.
  • Our new scavenger hunt through the maze this year will be “Music in our Ears”.  Find all the checkpoints and you can find the favorite river songs of the Fetzer family members.
  • We have made our maze “smart”.  You can use your smartphone for trivia questions and the checkpoints.  You can scan the code at our entrance or go to the website, Group leaders, you can use this website to customize your own questions for your youth.
  •  The RIVER MAZE caters to school field trips during the day and has created an education campaign that includes: lesson plans and activity sheets for teachers, discounted field trip opportunities, and an educational “passport” that can be custom designed by our staff or you can do it yourself at www. It integrates what students are learning at school into the maze experience and helps guide students along the correct pathway. Teachers can access curriculum materials and field trip information online at Field trips can also be scheduled by reservation

  • In an effort to make the experience as easy or as hard as visitors want it to be, the maze has been divided into two phases: beginner and expert. Participants will have the option to continue on to the next phase or exit the maze at the entrance to the second level.
  • Customized activities have been added for birthday parties, corporate outings and group rivalries/races.
  • The River Maze has its own pumpkin patch.  Come pick the perfect pumpkin.  
  • If the weather is still warm, visitors can battle each other in “Water Wars” (a water balloon launcher).
  • Other  attractions include “Corn Toss”, and “Corn Ball”
  • Visitors can still meet Spookley the Square Pumpkin, the Official Spokes-Pumpkin for National Bullying Prevention Month, to raise awareness for bullying prevention. 
  • Visitors need to come hungry.  A snack bar will be available featuring Barbecue, Hotdogs, etc. along with delicious desserts.

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