The spotlight was on Linvilla Orchards Wednesday afternoon as a production crew filmed for a new Travel Channel show called Cross Country Christmas.
The show, which will depict the best holiday events and traditions in America, won't air until next December so we have a bit of a wait but word is that there will be a viewer voting component too. Viewers will go online and vote for their favorite holiday event.
Rob Ferber, Linvilla manager, said about a month ago they were contacted by Travel Channel which was looking for places that have Christmas events and things to do and found Linvilla Orchards online.
"They were looking for unique and unusual Christmas things so that's why they found us," Ferber said.
Linvilla Orchards is widely known for its fall fun and events but it truly is a year-round operation. In its second year, the Recycled Tree Maze and Fore! the Planet Indoor Mini Golf is Linvilla's newest winter attraction.
"Everybody knows us for the fall so we're looking to expand and tell people we are year round," Ferber said. "We want people to come here all the time."
Travel Channel contacted Bang Pictures Production Company to shoot the film and Camera man and Producer Mark Eaton got the full run of the maze while filming.
"(Travel Channel) was looking for someone in the area and called us," Eaton, of Bucks County, said.
Eaton will then send the footage off to Travel Channel which will edit it down for the Cross Country Christmas episode.
Linvilla farm manager Norm Schultz explained that the Christmas tree (or Recycled Tree) maze is for all those trees that didn't find homes in time for Christmas.
"We've been having mazes for years...so we were looking for another draw for the winter," Schultz said.
The 2,000 trees, which end to end would be about one mile of trees, are constructed into a maze for kids and families to enjoy all winter long. The trees are left over from Linvilla's tree farm as well as local area tree lots that bring the leftovers to Linvilla.
"The thing you can't photography is the great aroma of the trees in there," he said. "...When you go in the maze the aroma is overwhelming."
Construction of the tree maze, which boasts 10 different types of trees, begins the day after Christmas but the weather can slow down the project.
"It takes tremendous man hours to build," Schultz said.
Linvilla Orchards Co-Owner Steve Linvill has had plenty of practice constructing corn, straw and now tree mazes.
"It's all in my head," Linvill said. "I do a little bit on paper first but because the trees are all different sizes, if I draw it out, it never turns out the way I draw it. (The trees) are natural, they aren't uniform. To make it all fit together it just sort of has to flow and I just make the paths."
Each year's tree maze is different too because they won't know ahead of time how many trees will be available or how much space is needed prior to constructing the maze.
With a corn maze, the whole thing is planted in the ground first and then the path is cut in once the corn has grown, but it can be difficult if sections of the corn don't grow as easily, leaving bare patches, Linvill explained. There is more flexibility with the tree maze since each tree is placed specifically to create the maze and the path.
However, Linvill said the easiest maze to constructed is the corn maze because he has had so many years of practice.
Go get lost in Linvilla Orchards Tree Maze and enjoy the smell of Christmas through March 3. Then head inside to warm up and continue the fun at the Fore! the Planet Indoor Mini Golf which runs through March 17.