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Finding Minnesota: Creative With Crops

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77654_Mike Binkley WEB Mike Binkley
Mike Binkley has been covering Minnesota news for more than 25 ye...
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PARK RAPIDS, Minn. (WCCO) — Minnesota is home to a lot of creative people.

They’re the ones who come up with innovative, entertaining ideas in the workplace, on stage or even off the beaten path.

Near Park Rapids, there’s a farmer named Tony Carter who has such a vivid imagination, his wife says, “it’s scary sometimes.”

She has watched him create mazes, slides, costumed hay rides and a Rube Goldberg-style pumpkin launcher on the family farm.

Good luck getting him to talk about it, though.

He is not real expressive — at least not with words — but in the fall, his creativity is on full display throughout the Carters Red Wagon farm.

One of his three mazes resembles a castle, with turrets made out of corn stalks.

“I guess I kind of, the idea came to me last winter to make it sort of into a castle theme,” Carter said.

But as low-key and quiet as he may be about it all, the squeals from young visitors on his family farm this time of year tell a different story.

“He still doesn’t even understand what he has created,” said Linda Carter, Tony’s wife. “He’s very quiet, very much an introvert, deep thinker.”

Without GPS or other technology, Carter mapped out a giant corn maze that has a George Washington theme.

It covers six acres, with information along the way about our nation’s first president.

You almost have to be above it to get a clue into what motivates Tony. It’s the quote he chose from George Washington –- “I had rather be on my farm than be emperor of the world.”

“And that’s pretty much how my husband feels, too,” said Linda Carter. “He would rather be on his farm than anyplace else.”

It’s on the farm that Tony Carter has found his adventure.

And it may be that he’s happy to avoid the limelight and let others enjoy his “revolutionary” concepts.

At least that’s what we think; he didn’t really say.

The maze and other attractions on Carters’ Red Wagon Farm are open on Saturdays through the end of October for an admission fee of $7.50.

After that, their cows will move in, to eat the corn and fertilize the field for next year.

Do you have an idea for our next Finding Minnesota destination? Let us know here.

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