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The ephemeral maze

Alfonsine, Italy, 2019

What if I told you that "the world's first dynamic maze" is located in Italy - would you believe it?

We were about 30 friends - kids and parents - from various regions of Italy, and we were in Alfonsine, in the province of Ravenna. The idea was fun in itself: we would spend an evening divided into teams and with one goal - to find the exit.

It was a late July afternoon and the colors in the sky were crazy. The owner of the farm, in the floriculture business for 30 years, had decided to turn a cornfield into a maze. We went into it singing and prancing, all elated after receiving instructions-and honestly none of us expected to find corn walls high enough that we couldn't see around, find landmarks, or memorize any direction.

At first it was one laugh, some hiding in the corn to startle the next group, some singing 70s songs, some howling. We realized that the game was more serious than expected when we found the first clues, riddles, and objects to make sense of the initial story we had hastily listened to....

The sun had set and although we tried to follow the voices, steal the clues from a few groups of parents, all we managed to find was the emergency exit, a few dead-end streets that led us to redo the same path several times, and we barely kept our regular beats when - hearing a rustling behind us - we saw a black cat crossing the path. Needless to say, 3 hours flew by there. We laughed so hard that we came out with belly cramps and cut straight through to the opposite point to the entrance - a decision made unanimously for survival.

Meeting up with the owner again at the end, it was impossible not to notice the glint of pride in his eyes: every year since 2010 he has carefully chosen a story, a character, the tests to be submitted and shapes the camp and the course, then takes a photo from above that he shows only on the way out.

If you're nearby, you definitely can't miss this experience:

In the middle of the maze

Some hints

When the sun goes down... and we're still in!

Beautiful location

After-maze dinner with friends

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