Archive for the ‘Fun with Wine’ Category

Wineries in the winter what’s going on?

Tuesday, February 1st, 2011
LaCrescent vines sleeping

LaCrescent vines sleeping

What goes on in the vineyard in January, well not too much. These vines are very winter hardy and can handle temps. down to 30 degrees below zero farenheit. They had a good growing season last year with lot of heat and sunshine and not too much or too little rain.

July vs. January

July vs. January

We had a early harvest due to the good growing season. This allowed for the leaves to hang on a long time since we had a late “killing frost” also. The vines were able to load lots of energy via the fall sunshine and hopefully store some good energy in the root systems before they went dormant. This helps on these long cold days.

We prune these grapes later than most to see what and if any late frosts take away buds we may be counting on.

Reisling "on the bubble"

These reisling vines pictured above are not as winter hardy as the LaCrescent and we will see, this might be their last year on the farm. We may replace these with another French American Hybrid called Traminette.

So while the grapes are outside enduring the winter, our guests are inside enjoying the fruits of their labor from seasons past!

Scott Alan "The Island Dr."

At Maize Valley We Make Great Wine…FUN! Last weekend we had the Island Dr. aka Scott Alan in. We have live entertainment every Friday and Saturday night and this past weekend the Dr. brought the house down! Great guests desended to form a massive conga line, limbo and just a whole bunch of other Island style fun.

How low can you GO?

How low can you GO?

Maize Valley is Re-Loading for 2011!

Friday, January 7th, 2011
Stomp the Grapes 2010

Stomp the Grapes 2010

Cruise In July 22nd 2010

Cruise In July 22nd 2010

Pink Poker Run 2010

Pink Poker Run 2010

Cane Burning Par-Tay

Cane Burning Par-Tay

Hartville Radishes from Maize Valley Farms

Hartville Radishes from Maize Valley Farms

2010 was a great year at Maize Valley Farm Market and Winery, thank you! We really mean that. We are a family farm business that has been making a living with the soil since the 1800’s. Throughout all those year’s my wife’s family the Vaughan’s have been leather tanners, school teachers, carpenters, and all along farmers. You see you just did what you had to do to survive. As Dorie says in finding Nemo, “just keep swimming, swimming, swimming!

We grow about 52 different crops on about 700 acres but the most important crop is fun! Fun = memories and we try and build special events that cement those memories and last a lifetime. Our event calendar is loading up for 2011. We are working on making new events and adding and improving old ones too.

Look for our Vines, Wines, and Pines, cross country race to expand to include a “Farmathlon”, yea it’s gonna be cool! We are working on the half marathon and with any luck will be able to handle the expected growth up towards 2,000 runners.

The Pink Poker Run to raise money for Susan G. Komen 3 day for the cure will be back with a “Bike Rodeo” on the back side of it and hog roast.

We are pulling the plug on the Haunted corn maze and will be planting pumpkins in that area and making the woods part of the wagon ride paths. Plus the Pony Express is going to make it’s way back into the Corn Maze design.

The cane burning Par-Tay is gonna have a bigger pile, the monthly “Vintner Dinner” series keeps selling out so look for some new ideas coming there, the cruise-ins’ are every week starting in May and well wait to ya see the giant Hill-Slide we are building…..! Whew, and that’s not all! Stay Tuned!

At Maize Valley, We Make Great Wine…FUN!

What a wonderful fall! Thank you!!

Monday, November 8th, 2010
My wife is a "Survivor" more than I can say 4 this van!

My wife is a "Survivor" more than I can say 4 this van!

Pink Van 4 Susan G. Komen 3 Day for the cure

Pink Van 4 Susan G. Komen 3 Day for the cure

Marlboro Madness getting ready 4 work

Marlboro Madness getting ready 4 work

Straw Crawl "Pre-Season"!

Straw Crawl "Pre-Season"!

Straw crawl "Post Season"!

Straw crawl "Post Season"!

It was a long and wonderful fall harvest season here at Maize Valley! BEST one EVER! Thank you to all of those of you who came out and enjoyed one of the best weather fall periods we have ever experienced. It all started on Sept. 18th with the balloon lift off and wrapped up with Oct. 31st finding our crew still hard at work in the Carnage in the Corn Haunted Corn maze which was way too much fun!

Great weather came together with great effort to make this season a rewarding time for all of us. The grapes had their best harvest ever with all the heat from the summer and a late frost letting them store up extra energy for the coming winter after we were finished picking.

The half marathon was a huge success, a new greenhouse is going up at the main farm and the vintner dinners keep selling out. We are looking forward to a great Thanksgiving and Christmas season and then we will start pouring the coal to next year’s slate of special events.

All this is only possible with great staff, great neighbors and wonderful guests each and every day. Thank you all and look for Maize Valley to “Bring it” even harder in 2011. At Maize Valley We Make Great Wine…FUN! 🙂

Breast Cancer, Burn it to the ground “Cane” Burning Par-Tay!

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010
Wow Dad this pile is HUGE!

Wow Dad this pile is HUGE!

Brett Helping Dad bring in the pile!

Brett Helping Dad bring in the pile!

The Cane Burning Party will take place in our hilltop Pavilion on Saturday, May 29. Admission is $10 ($5 of which will be donated to the Susan G. Komen Foundation) and will include hamburgers, bratwurst, potato salad, chips and s’mores around the fire. With Live entertainment for “Me and this other guy”.

My wife Michelle was diagnosed with Breast Cancer last August. She is walking in the 3 day walk. You can donate directly and learn more about her journey by visiting www.maizevalley.com and click on her picture and link.

Come on out and enjoy a good old fashioned big ole’ “Bon Faaarrr”, from Back in the Day. The canes are the wood we prune from the vineyard, not disabled persons walking aids either!! When they burn down we have more wood to add! We might even take a “moon light wagon ride” once the tunes die down, C how it goes! 🙂

Food starts about 6:00, wine sales in the pavilion too, we “Light it up” bout 7:00, probably hang out till bout 10:00-11:00 ?

We Make Great Wine…FUN!!

Saturday, May 8th, 2010
Tractor broke!

Tractor broke!

Haunted Maze path

Haunted Maze path

View from the seat of our John Deere 1020

View from the seat of our John Deere 1020

Well I say it many times yes this blog is called Ohio Wine and More. You might say we R a winery with ADHD most of the time. You see we came from the agricultural world of dairy cattle, grain farming and vegtable production then direct farm marketing and agritourism. Maize Valley has evolved over the years to meet emerging opportunities the best we can.

So what has that got to do with wine you ask? Well we do have fun here. We say there are many places you can go and have a very nice time, but come to Maize Valley when you want to have fun. Last year our dry red blend won Double concordance gold at the Ohio Wine competition. This spring our Red Raspberry made from our own home grown Red Raspberries did the same at the Finger Lakes Wine Comp. Plus dozens of other medals from other respected shows and competitions. But we don’t take that too seriously or ourselves.

You can always go back and buy more wine, you can’t go back and make more time. So we do things still like haunted corn mazes pumpkin cannons, pig races and more. We make a great product but serve it with a flash. So come and see why Maize Valley is the place to be. If you don’t care for the stuff mentioned above that’s cool just chill with great food or wine in the market and cafe’, It’s all good!

See below how we start the prep for this years haunted corn maze adventure. Come and see why Maize Valley IS the place to BE!

Haunted Corn/Sorghum Maze getting started for 2009, #Agritourism, #farm

Friday, July 24th, 2009
No-tilling sorghum

No-tilling sorghum

Galen and Tim planting sorghum

Galen and Tim planting sorghum

Back in the day we ran a haunted corn maze attraction. We started it because people asked us and we thought it would be fun to chase people around in the dark with a chain saw over our heads screaming at them till some of them peeeed their pants. Well yes that was fun for a while, then we got older the winery business started taking off and I lost my brother-in-laws help managing it as he was off making wine and taking care of customers. Whatever……

So a few years ago I was up there in the dark by myself and I felt like the whole place was just spinning out of control. People running everywhere, the main maze was getting torn apart, and I was dead tired. It seems it is harder to pull 18-20 hour days when you get older and plus my chain saws were wearing out, or maybe it was me. So we pulled the plug on the haunted business.

Boy did we hear about it the next year. From who you ask??? Church groups, families, Mom and Dads and kids and teens too. You see when I do something I give it my all and do 150% or more and people loved our haunted attraction. I always focused on not just scareing people but entertaining them too. We would have entire families go through our haunted event and the kids came out scared Mom a bit shaken and Dad laughing sometime crying and a time or two even sacred much to his suprise.

So we are reloading the event this season wtih the help from Terry’s Tire Town to help get the word out. Anyhow you can get and up close look at how a John Deere No-Till grain drill works too!

At Maize Valley We Make Great Wine…FUN!!

Corn Maze Update and how we do it too.

Thursday, July 23rd, 2009
First pic of maze one week after cutting

First pic of maze one week after cutting

View of Corn Maze Paths after Roto-tilling

View of Corn Maze Paths after Roto-tilling

View of Corn Maze Paths before Roto-tilling

View of Corn Maze Paths before Roto-tilling

In an ongoing attempt to let people know what and how we do things at Maize Valley I keep letting out a little bit of info here and there about how it is we keep making Great Wine…FUN!

You can do corn maze a bunch of different ways but what I am showing is just how we roll. This year will be our tenth corn maze and the system we use works for us, it may not for you but such is the case in many things agritourism.

Like making wine you cannot make just what you like, such is also the case in a corn maze. People come out to buy some of our fresh produce, maybe drink some award winning wine, but in the fall especially to have fun. The maze helps folks do that. So we cannot create something that just makes people nuts but rather is an enjoyable experience while on the farm.

So part of that is first a foremost safety. That is why I roto-till the paths so it reduces the chance anyone can fall and if they do so they don’t land on something that could injure them. I know it will happen but I try my best to see that it doesn’t. We try and get the paths like road before we open so a stroller or power chair can go through weather permitting.

So check out how we roto-till our corn maze paths and see some of what goes into your admission price too. And remember if you do come STAY ON THE PATHS OR WE WILL ASK YOU TO LEAVE, for the pleasure of all guests that come after you.

At Maize Valley, We Make Great Wine…FUN!!

Vines, Wines, and Pines 5K Went AWESOME!! #Agritourism, #Farm

Friday, July 17th, 2009
Great food from Subway, and cool awards from Maize Valley

Great food from Subway, and cool awards from Maize Valley

On your mark!

On your mark!

It's not like your getting married or anything...Uh maybe it is??

It's not like your getting married or anything...Uh maybe it is??

What an awesome day! Our Third 5K race went off without a hitch and to the raves of the participants. It is really ALL about them anyway because without runners….we don’t have a race! Thanks to Cope Equipment for providing the Gator to lead the race, and Terry, Sally and crew of R&S racing who time the race and make it all go sssoooooo smooth!

The entire race takes place on our property and our next door neighbors, Moore Christmas Tree Farm thanks to them too!

Part of what we are working at is branding Maize Valley as “Destination Health” if ya get my drift. You see we grow all these healthy veggies, sell all this good for you locally grown food, have all this open space to exercise in I mean hey, how could you not get healthier hangin’ with us?

As part of creating a first class agritourism destination we had mostly been focused on the “Fall Season” with pumpkins, corn mazes, wagon rides etc. But you see I maintain all the trails and fields all year long just because we like to keep things looking neat.

Well I got to thinking why don’t we have more events and get more use out of the grounds? So we have events more often now and we are even working at developing walking trails in partnership with local health care businesses to promote an over all healthy lifestyle that is FUN and rewarding.

Come join us for the “Stomp The Grapes” half marathon on October 3rd if you are ready for the challenge!!

And if ya just want to have fun….get married!! We had a bridal party run in the race, come back for the shower, then regroup and close the place down too!!

At Maize Valley, We Make Great Wine…FUN!!!

Fun with Wine…In the Sunshine!!

Friday, May 22nd, 2009
1957 Chevy's just sort of say it all

1957 Chevy's just sort of say it all

Crusin' the Vines Car, Truck and Bike Cruise In

Crusin' the Vines Car, Truck and Bike Cruise In

Now I am sorry I can’t put everybodies car pic up or can the video show them all. I shot 17 minutes last night just to take in all the cars and You Tube doesn’t let that much go up!! So the couple pics and short video is just a sample of the way cool rides and drives we have every Thursday night in the summer time, weather permitting.

We offer wagon rides to the vineyard and fields, later in the season the animal train for the little kids, and once we start harvesting melons and such so we have ammo for the pumpkin cannon we bring out the big kids toy too!

We had about 75 cars or so last night have had as many as 300 on others, you just never know who will show. So this is just one more way at Maize Valley We Make Great Wine…FUN!!!

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Entertainment, Food, Great Wine and More at Maize Valley!!

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009
LaCressant Bud looking for some sunshine

LaCressant Bud looking for some sunshine

Sorry for missing a few days here, been REAL busy in the field planting, spraying, getting Agri-Tourism stuff ready and all, just not enough time to blog away about it. As you can see by the pic the Buds are breaking, leaves are shaking, just more stuff happeing out there than I can keep up with and here I sit at a Keyboard!!! Yikes, Rut Row, and I could get it done if were not for those meddling kids…….oh sorry wrong story.

Real quick we had a great time in the Winery Cafe’ last weekend. Lots of folks hit our delicatessen hard Saturday both for take home and menu items, we had three tour buses in the afternoon then capped the night off with an awesome performance from Bongo Joe and Steve-O. They do a great Rockin’ Blues sound and are hear about once a month and will also be back for our 1st Blues Fest July 11th too! Check the vid below.

I’ll be back soon with stuff from the vineyard and farm. We moved the Corn maze Tower/Stairs yesterday and today and have pics of the move. Plus I put the kritters out on pasture today too, but got more work to do today yet.

Later

FT