A Little About Our Farm & Family...
The current farmstead has been in the Gaeddert family for over 75 years. It was first established in 1880 by Mr. Ben Buhler of whose family the nearby town is named after. In 1930, it was purchased by Frank & Katherine Gaeddert who thought it would be the perfect place to raise their future six children and continue the path of farming.
The farm has endured the hardships of the Great Depression, the dust bowl of the 1930's and the farm crisis of the 1980's. Through hard work and some creative ingenuity the farm has not only survived, but thrived.
The farm was purchased by Frank & Katherine's son and his wife, Leon & Ruth Gaeddert, in 1967. Since that time, they have made many physical changes to the farm but the basic love for farming and country life remains the same.
In 1969 and again in 1972 two daughters, Julie & Tonya, were added to the family. In 1994, Tonya married Brent Martisko and have added four children to the family. In 2011 Julie married Torrey Ball.
A Little About Our Agritainment...
The corn maze concept for our family began back in 1997 when Brent & Tonya Martisko were living in Minnesota, Brent's home state. They visited a friend's corn maze and thought that would be fun to do themselves someday. The next year, Tonya's sister, Julie Gaeddert, came to visit and they went to the same maze again. After that trip, they all knew that this new corn maze phenomenon was something that they needed to bring to the state of Kansas.
So, in 1999, the three of them, together with their parents, Leon & Ruth Gaeddert, put their heads together to envision what this new attraction would entail. And what happened in that first year was truly aMAZEing! To our excitement on opening day, people actually came to our maze!! We had no idea what to expect.
After the success of that first year, Brent & Tonya quit their jobs as an accountant and social worker in MN and moved to KS. Julie quit her job as an accountant in Wichita and moved closer to home as well. We all wanted to be back out in the country again, and this was the perfect opportunity to do so.
For the next 20 years we entertained thousands and thousands of families at our corn maze, pumpkin patch and fall festival each year. We enjoyed this but felt a nudging to finally take this business in a new direction.
After celebrating our 20th anniversary corn maze in 2018, we all decided is was time to focus on something new. Beginning in 2019 and continuing into the foreseeable future, Kansas Maze stopped creating corn maze designs and instead is focused on providing our customers with THE BEST Sunflower Festival experience we can give! With more than 20 acres of sunflowers and 600,000+ blooms you are sure to find that perfect backdrop for pictures or just be mesmerized at their beauty!
An addition to our Sunflower Festival in 2019 came in the form of our 5K and 1 Mile Trail Runs which are now held the last Saturday in August. These have been a fantastic experience and we invite anyone to register and join in the fun!
We give thanks to God for giving us this opportunity and hope you will join us at our farm!
We look forward to meeting you soon!
The Gaeddert & Martisko & Ball Families