Sunflowers of Sanborn owners detail plans for 2019

James Neiss/staff photographerLocal Photographer Kurt Ross of Wheatfield takes a picture in the cut-your-own flower field at Sunflowers of Sanborn at 3311 Saunders Settlement Road this past year.

Plans for this year's Sunflowers of Sanborn attraction, as well as a list of events planned for August have been submitted to the Niagara County Planning Board.

Representatives of the attraction will appear before the county planning board and Cambria Zoning Board on Monday.

The popular Sanborn attraction was shut down last year after a cease-and-desist letter was sent to the operators because town officials said the business, which operates in a residentially zoned area, had gone beyond simply selling and displaying sunflowers. Since then, the town has passed amendments to the zoning ordinance that will allow a business in any zoned area to apply for special event permits. 

The permit application says they would like to operate a u-pick sunflower farm, which will give people the option to chose between five different types of sunflowers. 

They have requested to add educational farming activities. One is to have an education wagon tour of their farm and also to have a corn box for children to learn how to grow and harvest corn. 

The proposed non-farming activities include: a general store, where people can purchase items such as sunflower seeds, honey and clothing items; a u-pick farm; concessions, which will include hamburgers, hot dogs, chips, ice cream and homemade donuts; a sunflower sifter; and the sunflower trail. 

The application also has a detailed list of their planned events for 2019. 

They would like to host a farmers market every Wednesday and Friday in July to September from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunflower wood carving education classes would be held on Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and it would include novice and experienced wood carvers. 

In August, a multitude of events are planned: 

• A "Crafters in the Field" event is planned for Aug. 17 and 18 with a rain date of Aug. 24 and Aug. 25, and it would include 50 crafters and artisans. 

• Fitness classes are planned for every Saturday and Sunday in August. Sunflower art/craft classes are planned for every Tuesday and Thursday in August from 6 to 8 p.m. 

• An annual charity lemonade sale, to benefit Mason's Mission, is planned for Aug. 11 or Aug. 25 from noon to 5 p.m. 

• 4H goats and pony shows are planned for Sundays in August from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

• On Aug. 31, they would like to have a food truck event from noon to 5 p.m. 

In the Fall, owners hope to have corn stalks, pumpkins and gourds grown and for sale. They also would like to have a trunk or treat event on Sept. 21 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

The application also touches on how they plan to address parking and traffic concerns that some people might have. They will have 200 spots for everyday visits and for events they will have an overflow of parking, which will allow for more than 500 cars. This year, they would like to place traffic signs with entrance and exit arrows, which they believe will ensure a smooth traffic flow. 

A new driveway is also proposed for visitors to use to exit on Baer Road. 

Owners Louise and Chad Brachmann planted a sunflower field in 2017 to pay tribute to Louise's late parents, Jean and Flevie Danielewicz, and the field attracted thousands of visitors over the season. In 2018, they greatly expanded the business.

MORE ONLINE

• View the special use permit on our website, www.lockportjournal.com