Thursday, March 7, 2019

Maple Sugaring Season Is Almost Here

It may be difficult to believe with all the fresh fallen Adirondack snow and freezing temperatures, but spring is right around the corner, along with the sweetest time of all – maple sugaring season.

Making sugar from maple tree sap is weather dependent (typically temps over 40 during the day and into the 20s at night are best). In the Adirondacks, the season can be short, it can stop and start, or seem to go on forever any time from mid-February and mid-April, depending on the location of the sugar bush.  But March is always the best time in the Adirondacks to get into a sugar shack and take home some treats.

In the Adirondacks, we don’t have to wait for the official NY Maple Weekends (Mar 23-24, 30-31)  to enjoy sugary treats and celebrate all things maple.  Warren County typically gets an earlier sap run and it’s a hub for local maple producers. The town of Thurman is ready to kick-off the season with its annual Maple Days starting March 16-17.

Five Warren County maple producers (Hidden Hollow, Valley Road, Adirondack Gold, Toad Hill, and Mud St .Maple) are showcasing their wares for the next three consecutive weekends. It’s not all about maple, other local artisan producers are part of the tour as well, bringing all-natural, organic, and handmade items to the Artisan Fair.

Each Saturday in March, The Wild Center in Tupper Lake offers a Sugar Shack campfire with complimentary hot chocolate, stories, and marshmallows at the Community Maple Project. The museum is also hosting two pancake breakfasts during NY Maple Weekends. On March 23 and 30 from 8:30-10:30 am, Wild Center guests can start the morning with the most important part of the day, fresh maple syrup. Reservations and admission to the museum is required. There is an additional fee for the breakfast.

These Adirondack Maple Weekends in March offer a unique day for visitors, and an opportunity to meet new people from around the region. Each venue offers something different, beyond a tour of the sugar house. It’s a time to make room for everything maple. Enjoy!

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Diane Chase is the author of the Adirondack Family Activities guidebook series, Adirondack Family Time. She writes about ways to foster imaginative play through fun-filled events and activities in the Adirondack region.

From her home in Saranac Lake, Diane also writes a weekly family-oriented newspaper column for the Adirondack Daily Enterprise and keeps her own blog Adirondack Family Time. Her writing and photography has appeared in numerous newspapers, magazines, marketing companies and advertising agencies.

She even finds time to assist her husband with Adirondack Expeditions guiding families and young adults in the High Peaks.

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