The Berry Barn will always be the total package.
A five-minute drive on Valley Road leads you to a fairytale-like cottage that proudly stands on the banks of the South Saskatchewan River, miles away from city lights and city noise. As you step out of your car you immediately fall prey to orchard-fresh Saskatoon Berry pies, fudge, milkshakes, giant flower displays and walking trails. Picking your own berries quickly becomes a Zen-like addiction and every card-carrying Saskatite has attended at least one outdoor wedding in the picturesque garden area.
The Berry Barn is legendary. It flawlessly delivers everything you crave in a single location. It doesn’t need to evolve and change with the seasons…but of course it does.
It was September Long when we read that The BB had just opened a Halloween Kid Zone and Maze. My wife claimed October 1st was the reasonable date to start getting excited about Halloween; I disagreed…for me, the day after Halloween is the “reasonable date” to get excited about the next Halloween.
The entrance to the maze was loaded with games of skill for the kids. Ghost bowling, a Halloween version of ring toss, an impossible game where you had to throw balls into cups being held by severed hands protruding from the wall, and a giant version of Kerplunk! I told my family how I went undefeated at Kerplunk when I was growing up and they pretended I had told them that story before.
After playing all the games a few times to various levels of success, (I won Kerplunk) we entered the maze. As a big fan of those giant corn mazes, I was expecting to be somewhat underwhelmed, but the small maze is surprisingly well constructed. The walls are built high enough that you can’t just arch on your tiptoes and avoid every dead end. Hanging black and orange garbage bags force you to commit to each and every room, often coming face to face-less with a scarecrow blocking your progress.
As with every maze- getting lost is half the fun and if you keep journeying deeper and deeper into this one…if you’re lucky enough…you will stumble across the greatest achievement in maze history.
A scarecrow……sitting on a toilet.
Welcome to next level mazing, folks.
To say this is a crowd pleaser with the children would be somewhat of an understatement. Every reaction is identical- they see a squatting scarecrow; their eyes drop to the toilet…followed by a short pause…then THAT’S when they finally see it: the poor scarecrow’s pants are hanging down revealing two small pumpkins for his buttocks.
When the joke finally comes together, every single child erupts with unbreakable deep body-shaking belly laughter.
I pretended to be on my phone as I watched this visual joke pay off over and over and over again.
To whichever focus group methodically deconstructed the very essence of what children find hilarious, then rebuilt it as a pooping scarecrow…you forever have my complete professional respect and unwavering admiration.