The Field of Screams at the O’Keefe Ranch was a howling success.
The haunted corn maze fundraising event at the Ranch ran for 11 nights back in October.
Kelly MacIntosh, the ranch’s marketing and special events coordinator, says a lot of work goes into it, starting with set design in June, followed by a large crew for the performances.
“We had upwards of 45 actors every night, plus a crew behind the scenes, with technicians and directors. And then volunteers, everything from parking to food and coffee sales. It’s extensive,” MacIntosh tells Kiss FM.
Over 18-thousand tickets were sold for the event, raising a net income of $120,000 for the ranch, up 68% from 2016.
“It’s going to good use obviously, for all of our expenses in helping to maintain the ranch year round,” says MacIntosh.
The Ranch is home to a collection of 10,000 items and the cost to preserve, store, repair, and display items made of various materials in all sorts of sizes and conditions is high. One acid-free banker’s style document box costs $13, a garment box costs about $50, and a medium sized UV protected glass for original framed artwork cost approximately $80. There is also the cost of the museum to house objects, the heating and humidity control, and insurance.
This year the theme for the maze was Dante’s Inferno: The Descent and it far surpassed anyone’s expectations of attendance and popularity.
There ranch says about 5,000 volunteer hours were contributed, along with in-kind sponsorship provided by NorVal Rentals, Elephant Storage Centre, Tolko Industries, and from the corporate pumpkin sponsors.
“It goes to show that the community supports the Ranch and sees the importance of keeping the historic site alive and well,” says MacIntosh.
The O’Keefe Ranch, which is owned by the City of Vernon, is now closed for the regular season and re-opens in May 2018, with the exception of Victorian Christmas, December 9-10, 2017.