Thursday, February 8, 2018

Maple Syrup Time is Coming!

I don’t care what that groundhog saw in Pennsylvania earlier this month, as a resident of the Hanover-Horton Area, I know that there are three things that tell me spring is really, truly on the way; The Frosty King Ice Cream Shop opens, (Feb 11), the Hanover Market starts selling their world-famous Potato and Macaroni salads, and there are buckets hanging from the maple trees.

In fact, just before this last onslaught of cold weather and snow, someone in the area already had their milk jugs fastened to their maple trees. 

Gathering the maple sap has been a tradition in America since before the European explorers come to our shores.  The best tree for tapping is the Sugar Maple Don’t get too excited about tapping that one maple tree in your yard though, as it takes hours of cooking to change 40 parts of maple sap into 1-part maple syrup!

Luckily, the Hanover Horton Area Historical Society does all that work for you and you can watch them doing it!  We make our Maple Syrup the old-fashioned way, in an old fashion style Sugar Shack on our property. 

Starting sometime around the middle of February, when daytime temperatures are above 40’, and nighttime temperatures are in the 20’s, the sap starts to “run”.  It is during this time, that we place “taps” into the trees and hang our buckets.

We spend the next month gathering the buckets of sap, cooking it down in our Maple Syrup Shack, and bottling it in our Event Center kitchen.

Our annual Maple Syrup Festival is on March 17th this year.  We have a pancake breakfast in the morning and lots of activities all day long.  There will be demonstrations, hands-on-activities, displays, and storytellers.  Love cooking with maple syrup?  We have a maple syrup cooking contest where you can showcase your favorite recipe.  We are also holding a bake sale featuring several products made from maple syrup.  For a special treat, pick up some of our delicious maple cotton candy and maple popcorn.  If you have never tried those two things before, you will not want to miss this opportunity to sample them!

Our pancake breakfast starts at 7 am.  All the events start at 10 am.  Hope to see you there!