IOWA CITY, IA—An alarming report published this week by researchers at the University of Iowa revealed that over 15,000 Americans vanish without a trace from “Fall Fest” hayride wagons every year. “Our data shows that, each autumn, between 1 and 2 percent of all Fall Fest attendees who climb up onto the back of straw-covered wagons and embark on tractor-pulled hayrides never return,” said the report’s lead author, Simon Shaw, noting that on the average hayride, at least two or three passengers will unexpectedly go missing and be lost forever. “Last year alone, we catalogued over 8,000 cases in which passengers disappeared from the wagon before they even reached the pumpkin patch, leaving behind nothing but empty hay bales where they once sat and overturned cups of steaming hot apple cider.” The report also discovered over 1,000 recorded instances of tractors emerging from cornfields without their drivers or any passengers at all, slowly trundling back toward the festival grounds with not a soul in sight.

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