Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Preparations begin for Maple Sugarin’ at the Prairie

This past weekend, many Darke County Parks’ Volunteers attended a training to gear up for the upcoming maple sugaring season! Next is to wait for the weather to cooperate so trees can be tapped and the sap can flow. Sap will begin to flow when we have freezing nights and thawing days. Volunteers learned the process of boiling sap down to syrup on the Parks’ evaporator. For some it was a refresher, for others it’s an opportunity to learn a new skill and help out the Park District at the same time.

The Maple Sugarin’ at the Prairie Festival will be held on Saturday, March 1st , from 8am-4pm. This early spring day at Shawnee Prairie offers guided tours through history and science as we learn the process of turning sap into syrup. After our tour through the woods, we’ll visit the Sugar Shack, where you can warm up in the steam-filled evaporator room as the sap spends countless hours on a boil to reduce it down to syrup. Then head out to the Log House and Blacksmith Shop where you can visit with our 200-year-old pioneers and discuss 18th century life. There will also be a 50/50 raffle. Finally complete the day at the Nature Center where the gift shop will be full of maple goodies for your sweet tooth!

The Friends of the Parks will once again be serving up a hearty breakfast of waffles, sausage, juice, coffee and of course pure Ohio Maple Syrup! Carry-out is Available. Breakfast will be served from 8:00am-12:00pm. Tickets will be available at the door on the day of the breakfast, for a $5 donation. Call 937.548.0165 for more information!

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