Mid-February to mid-March the sap starts to flow the maple sugar trees–flowing better when the weather is cooler. It’s the time of year for maple syrup festivals to celebrate the start of sap running season. All throughout the Midwest, maple syrup festivals have been happening. I love maple syrup.
Yesterday, lot us tapped, bored and boiled during the two-day Maple Syrup Festival in northwest Chicago at the 46-acres North Park Village Nature Center.
Did you know maple sugar trees have to be at least 40 years old before they can be used for sap collection? The hundred-year old trees may have multiple holes. For just one gallon of syrup to be produced, it takes 40-50 gallons of sap. Only the maple sugar trees are tapped, so don’t try tap the maple tree in your garden.
Maple Syrup Festival, March 24-25, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., was a day with food, games, musicians and interactive exhibits where I joined other festival-goers in the different stages of collecting maple syrup. The admission at this event was free with only a charge for food. Check the nature centers and forest preserves in your area for a maple syrup festival by you.
The Maple Syrup Festival part I:
The Giving Tree Band
In part II, there will be more photos and information the nature center, its trails and interesting past. At the end of the post will be my recipe for maple syrup marinade.