It was a beautiful early spring weekend and the nice weather coincided beautifully with Maple Weekend. This was a new event for me as I had never heard of Maple Weekend before. It is a way for all the producers of maple syrup in New York State, to open their doors to the public. You get to learn and see how maple syrup is produced and if you’re lucky (and we were lucky), you get to taste some of the products made with maple syrup, like cookies, maple spread and all sorts of other goodies.
We attempted to visit three maple syrup producers and had an interesting experience trying to get to the 3 places we had decided to visit. We plugged in the address of the first place into our Garmin GPS. I have a love hate relationship with my Garmin… lots of times it’s extremely helpful in getting around, especially to previously unknown destinations. But the Garmin has a nasty habit of telling you that you’ve arrived at a destination when if fact you have not. And sometimes Garmin will try to take you down a road that is in pretty bad shape (think really bad dirt road) or a seasonal road (which is closed in the winter). Well, that’s what happened to us. We were driving down this really steep dirt road with lots of icy and snowy patches and suddenly we got to where a sign indicated it was a seasonal road and basically closed. So we turned around and found our way back to the main road. Garmin thoughtfully rerouted us to the final destination but when we arrived, we found a deserted sugar shack.
Oh well, onward to our next destination, the Cedarvale Maple Sugar Company. This place had a rustic but cool gift shop. Many maple sugar products were for sale, and there were cookies for sale that were made with maple sugar and my personal favorite, cotton candy made with maple sugar. Yummy.
After indulging in some taste treats we walked to the sugar shack where the sap is boiled down to make maple syrup. Things are pretty high tech these days…gone are the wood burning boilers, replaced by gas fired burners. And also gone are the buckets hanging on trees…these have all been replaced by a high-tech network of plastic tubing strung from tree to tree to collect the sap.
We headed back to the gift shop for a couple more snacks and then hopped into the car and let Garmin get us lost again. Sure was a fun day!