There's no other way to put it.  In only its second year, the Sunflower Field in Sanborn is something you simply must do.  And why wouldn't you?  It's free.

Dale Mussen photo

I took my father in law to see it this week and he was amazed.  And what's even more amazing is the time and effort that went into this attraction all in honor of owner Louise Brachmann's late mother who loved sunflowers.

This year there's a parking lot, vendors, food trucks, concession stands, crafts.  This is probably bigger than Louise and her husband ever dreamed it would become.

Dale Mussen photo

And the sunflower field inspires people, like Karen Hodge Russell who I met there as she was completing one of five oil paintings she had been working on that day.  Karen is a former educator who taught art to gifted and challenged students at Buffalo City Honors School.  She is also an artist herself who has had two works accepted at Albright-Knox Art Gallery.

Karen said she was recently in France where the countryside inspired several works of art she created there, but on her return to Western New York she said she realized how much beauty is right here where we live.  She spent most of the day at the Sunflower Field that day after being overwhelmed by its beauty.

Karen also knows a thing or two about sunflowers and she told me there are over 70 varieties of sunflowers and she says she has counted at least a dozen varieties in the Sanborn Sunflower Field.  Who would have thought?  You learn something every day.