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Quetzalcoatl Lives in Field Puzzle

September 6, 1998

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) _ Quetzalcoatl, the feathered serpent of Aztec and Toltec tradition, lurks in a cornfield and it’s enough to confuse even its makers.

The public was admitted this weekend to a maze cut through the maize, two miles of twisting, turning, brain-addling trails laid out in the outline of the legendary figure.

The puzzle path was hewn through the forest of 8-foot-tall cornstalks by Wyman Edwards and Jim Malone, who work for Rio Grande Community Farms, a nonprofit group that preserves and rebuilds agricultural lands. It was designed by professional maze-maker Adrian Fisher of Portsmouth, England.

It should take people about two hours to work their way through, said Lois Vermilya, a spokeswoman for the farms.

She said the only way she’ll dare venture in is with Malone or Edwards _ and sometimes even they get lost.

But there’s help for anyone who gets lost.

People are sent into the maze in groups of 25 every 15 minutes. Every group carries a flag so their progress can be monitored by helpful volunteers stationed on a bridge overlooking the field.

Maze-wanderers also are given maps, and there are color-coded clues at dead-ends and along the paths.

The maze will be open every weekend through Halloween. After that, the corn stalks will be cut down, a few at a time, to allow sandhill cranes to stop and feed during their migration south.

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