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Sea of Schuylkill County sunflowers

Sunflowers symbolize happiness, loyalty, and longevity, and in Schuylkill County, there's a farm that is giving visitors a reason to smile and place to escape to.

SCHUYLKILL COUNTY, Pa. — In the shadows of Second Mountain just outside of Orwigsburg is a sight that looks like it was derived from a painting—a sea of sunflowers in the rolling hills of Schuylkill County.

"The passion aspect of it, I go to sleep and plan my day. as soon as I see the sun come through the window, I'm up and ready to go," said owner Ken Smith. "The best part of the day to work is the early morning right when the sun comes up. It's cooler, it's peaceful and you can really get in touch with what's going on in the field."

Since starting Second Mountain Sunflowers in 2015, Smith has started his days in West Brunswick Township bright and early at 6 a.m.

A former Christmas tree farmer, he wanted a new challenge, so he started planting sunflowers, which are also known as happy flowers.

And since discovering that his hard work evokes those types of feelings, he's been hooked to the craft.

"What really hits home with me is the smiles on the children, the parents, the grandparents, it's just a family affair."

For so many, these 50 acres of sunflowers are an escape from the outside world, a place where people can find stillness, peace, and form new memories.

"As time goes on and life changes, it's just peaceful. You can separate yourself from everyday experiences and get in touch with the nature," Jen Schreckengost said.

When you come here, you can pick as many sunflowers as you want for $5 dollars. Here, the saying goes, "We don't count stems, we count smiles."