Maple sugaring in the Metroparks | Events
With the end of winter approaching, the time to collect sap is almost here. Discover how people tapped the trees to extract the sap - from the early days through modern techniques at Cleveland Metroparks free "History of Maple Sugaring" on weekends from March 2 through March 17 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Maple Grove Picnic Area in Rocky River Reservation.
Visitors can walk through time along the Sugarbush Trail to see the sap-collecting methods and syrup-making processes used by Native Americans, pioneers and modern sugar farmers.
After the hike, head to the Sugarhouse, and watch sap being boiled into delicious, 100-percent, pure maple syrup. Guided public hikes start at the Sugarhouse every twenty minutes (the last hikes leaves at 3:40 p.m.).
Northeast Ohio is a major commercial producer of maple sugar due to its prime weather conditions.
The tree's sap flow mechanisms depend on temperatures which alternate back and forth from the freezing point (32º F). The best sap flows come when nighttime temperatures are in the low 20's and daytime temperatures are in the 40's.
The longer it stays below freezing at night, the longer the sap will run during the warm day to follow. Most commercial sugaring operations collect sap through interconnected plastic tubing attached to the maple trees, and the maple-sugaring season typically lasts four to six weeks.
The "History of Maple Sugaring" program can also accommodate schools and groups during weekdays by appointment only.
Maple Grove Picnic Area is located off Valley Parkway in Rocky River Reservation, between Cedar Point Road and Spafford Road in Brook Park - south of Rocky River Nature Center.
For more information and to schedule weekday group programs, call 440-734-6660.