Two boys push a ball in last year’s straw maze at the Woodmere Art Museum.

Two boys push a ball in last year’s straw maze at the Woodmere Art Museum.

The bales return! Join us at Woodmere on Friday, Sept. 5, from 6 to 8 p.m. for the opening of our annual straw maze. Bring your children and grandchildren, invite friends from across the region, and join us for a pleasurable evening and refreshments on the Museum’s porch.

Please also visit with the entire family throughout the fall. As in previous years, the maze is open through Halloween and we will leave it in place longer if weather permits. Visit Woodmere’s website,, for more information and see the accelerated video that shows how last year’s maze was assembled.

We are calling this year’s maze the “Bales of Cornwall,” inspired by Woodmere’s upcoming exhibition, “Schofield: International Impressionist” and the well-known painting by W. Elmer Schofield (1866 – 1944) in our collection, “Morning Tide—Coast of Cornwall.”

Our 3-by-4-foot bales of straw will be stacked 6 feet high and arranged in rows of imaginary rocks and cliffs that suggest the dramatic coastline depicted in the painting.

We think of the maze as an interactive sculpture, and it will be made from over 80 bales of straw. It is designed by architects Peter Brown and Barbara Ann Sprague of BrownSprague LLC.

A seek-and-find activity will also be offered in Woodmere’s galleries throughout the run of the maze. The seek-and-find offers the pleasure of discovering bridges, ferry boats, and Wissahickon views in Schofield’s paintings. We will also offer art-making activities – free and optional for visitors to the maze—every Saturday from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m.

Mark your calendars for Chestnut Hill’s terrific Harry Potter Festival, which takes place this year on Friday, Oct. 17 and Saturday, Oct. 18; Woodmere will transform the maze into the cliffs, caverns, and sea where Dumbledore and Harry Potter search for the locket that contains the Voldemort’s wicked soul. Children will brave risky waters (of straw) and caverns filled with creatures and dark magic spells.

The maze will be open Friday evenings and regular museum hours during weekends. Woodmere asks $8 a child for entry to the maze and offers a special $20 price for groups of three or more children. Parents are free. Member discounts also apply. Please join us and bring your family and young friends!

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