MANITOWOC, WI – The Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center, in partnership with the Wisconsin Maple Syrup Producer’s Association, welcomes visitors to participate in their first-annual Maple Syrup Days Friday, March 26 and Saturday, March 27. The two-day event will highlight local syrup producers and offer hands-on opportunities to learn about Wisconsin’s maple syrup industry.
Family-friendly activities will run from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. on both Friday and Saturday at the Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center. Guests will learn how to tap a sugar maple log, grade maple syrup, make a take-home maple-inspired craft, and sample pure Wisconsin maple syrup. Adding to the experience will be industry experts: Theresa Baroun, Executive Director, and Kenni Bores, Maple Marketing Intern, from the Wisconsin Maple Syrup Producer’s Association. All activities are included with paid admission to the discovery center.
On Saturday, visitors are invited to extend their experience after a visit to Farm Wisconsin with stops at two local sugarbushes. Both Inthewoods Sugar Bush and Maple Sweet Dairy will be open to the public from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. for guests to witness maple syrup production first-hand. Visitors will be able to see the sugar maple trees, modern sap collection tools, and the equipment used to process sap into sweet maple syrup.
Visiting all three sites throughout the Maple Syrup Days event will enter participants in a drawing to win a gift basket filled with Wisconsin-made maple syrup products, courtesy of Inthewoods Sugar Bush and Maple Sweet Dairy. Punch cards can be picked up and dropped off at any location.
Take-Home Tree-Tapping Kits
Ahead of the weekend event, interested participants are encouraged to tap a tree at home, collect the sap, and bring it along to their visit to either Inthewoods Sugar Bush or Maple Sweet Dairy. Tree-Tapping Starter Kits will be available at the Farm Wisconsin Discovery center for those needing equipment and guidance. The kit includes everything needed to tap a sugar maple tree, as well as instructions on how to identify a sugar maple, when and how to tap the tree, and how to store the sap once it is collected. Collected sap can be traded in at either participating sugar bush for a small bottle of pure maple syrup to take home.
“Tapping a backyard maple tree and watching as the sap begins to flow is a perfect example of the type of experiential learning Farm Wisconsin is all about. We are excited to partner with the Wisconsin Maple Syrup Producer’s Association for such a unique hands-on experience to learn about our state’s maple industry,” shares Abigail Martin, Farm Wisconsin program manager.
Tree-Tapping Starter Kits are available for $8 each at the Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center now through March 20.
Wisconsin Maple Syrup Producer’s Association
The Wisconsin Maple Syrup Producer’s Association is dedicated to improving the ability of its members to produce & market the finest pure maple syrup in North America. Since the early 1960s, their goal has been to promote the consumption of pure maple syrup produced and processed in the state of Wisconsin. Today, the association is comprised of over 240 maple syrup producers throughout the state.
Inthewoods Sugar Bush
A true family company, Inthewoods Sugar Bush has been passed down for generations in the Wagner family. Together, their family mixes maple traditions with the latest technology to make their products. Their maple syrup is award winning and has claimed multiple Best-in-Show and blue-ribbon awards.
Inthewoods Sugar Bush is located at: 1040 S Union Rd, Manitowoc, WI 54220
Maple Sweet Dairy
Maple Sweet Dairy is rooted in over 60 years of maple syrup production. In 1964, Don and Ev Van Deurzen began by tapping only 50 trees and cooking in a small flat pan in the woods. Today, they run over 1,200 taps, 500 of which run on a solar-powered vacuum tubing system.
Maple Sweet Dairy is located at: 4501 County Road W, De Pere, WI 54115
Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center
The Farm Wisconsin Discovery Center is a state-of-the-art, interactive agricultural education center located in Manitowoc County. Farm Wisconsin connects visitors’ curiosity to the wonder of Wisconsin farming and provides guests with a better understanding of their food sources and their importance. The center features 10,000 square feet of hands-on learning opportunities, and a birthing barn where visitors may watch calves being born daily. The center was named to Time for Kids’ World’s 50 Coolest Places of 2019.
Farm Wisconsin observes mask and social distancing requirements for employees and guests, and hand sanitizer is widely available throughout the facility. Additional sanitation practices are also in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The 29,000 square-foot facility creates natural distancing, but Farm Wisconsin also utilizes an open plenum HVAC system and economizers to circulate fresh air.