On October 26th four international students, a domestic exchange student from New Mexico, and two staff members from the Office of International Education visited Bowles Farm for some fall fun! Located about 30 minutes from St. Mary’s, the farm boasts the largest corn maze in Southern Maryland. This year, the corn maze was extra special because it honored the 175th Anniversary of St. Mary’s College of Maryland. For most of the students, the corn maze experience was new and different.
We spent about 30-45 minutes in the enormous corn maze. At one point the group got separated, but eventually we all reunited outside the maze in the barn for some lunch. Our students from Japan and Mexico landed at a table in front of a TV to catch some of the Saturday soccer games being played around the world. After lunch a few of us ventured to grab a sweet treat. Conveniently located next to the barn was a cupcake shop! Appropriately named “The Farmer’s Daughter Cupcakes” the shop had a wide variety of cupcakes for only $2.00 a piece! We sampled pink champagne, coconut cream, devil’s food and banana cream flavored cupcakes.
Another reason for visiting the farm was to visit the pumpkin patch! As American tradition goes, children (and adults) carve pumpkins for Halloween and we wanted to give SMCM international and exchange students the opportunity to purchase and carve their own pumpkins! As a group we strolled through the pumpkin patch, but it seemed that most of the nicer looking pumpkins had already been taken. However, we were lucky because we discovered another area with nicer looking pumpkins- perfect for carving- for sale. We each selected our favorite pumpkins and purchased them for $5.00 each. One student from Germany also bought a smaller pumpkin for a fall baking venture!
Bowles Farm also had a few little rides for kids and a petting zoo, but having visited the St. Mary’s County Fair a few weeks ago, we decided we would much rather head back to St. Mary’s to carve pumpkins and drink apple cider! We planned to carve pumpkins at the International Residence, just a couple of minutes from campus. Although most students agreed that in their home countries they have pumpkins- no one had ever carved one before! So, with bags, pumpkin carving kits, markers and our bare hands our pumpkin carving adventure began! We also put the pumpkin seeds in the oven to make toasted pumpkin seeds- yum! By the end of the day we had four carved pumpkins, including two “hybrid” pumpkins that were both carved AND painted!
~Amy Marrion, Graduate Assistant, Office of International Education