Sample syrup at Sugar Shack

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Sample syrup at Sugar Shack

Kayla Trail

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Argyle Lake State Park will hold its 18th annual Maple Syrup Festival on March 7 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

 Attendees can collect and boil sap down, then finalize the process by making maple syrup.

 “It is very thorough,” said Robin Hinchee, Argyle Lake State Park Superintendent. “We go through all of the steps involved from the point of tapping trees, all the way to boiling it down to a syrup form for anyone who is interested in original techniques.”

 The festival will feature a hayrack ride, leading students and families to Maple Grove where workers will run them through a step-by-step process and give listeners a history on sap collecting. 

 After collecting a container of syrup, students and families will be led back to Maple Grove’s Sugar Shack, where there will be a large stove burning.

 Samples of syrup will be available to all who participate in the process of making syrup.

 “You can get as involved as you want to be,” Hinchee said. “When they are in the grove, they actually have the old drills that would be used at that time, so if you want to crank the drill a few times, it is all manually operated.”

 Hinchee said there will be a kid’s craft table, souvenirs and activities available.

 “Friends of Argyle will be there with candy and T-shirts,” Hinchee said. “There will be a little exhibit there with some of the different methods of sap collection from the Indians all the way to the current methods.”

 The festival is free to the public.

 The Macomb Rotary Club will also be in attendance with refreshments, and there will be a pancake and sausage breakfast served and held at the Lion’s Den in Colchester from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m the same day.

 Hinchee said the trip to the festival might help better inform participants when it comes to learning how to make maple syrup.

 “It is something that a lot of people may have only heard about, how it was done by their grandparents or their great grandparents,” Hinchee said. “We have a lot of people who show up to the festival that remember doing it as a child so it brings back memories to them.”

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