Cooperstown Crier - Your Source for Hometown News - Cooperstown, Baseball Hall of Fame


March 25, 2010

Sap is oozing at The Farmers’ Museum



Do you know how many gallons of sap it takes to make a gallon’s worth of maple syrup? At what temperature does the sap turn into syrup?

How long does the maple syrup season typically last? All of these questions can be answered at The Farmers’ Museum’s Sugaring Off Sundays.

The annual event honors the maple sugar season by featuring historic and contemporary sugaring demonstrations, a pancake breakfast, children’s activities and more. Festivities take place each Sunday in March and will include Easter Sunday this year.

Admission includes the pancake breakfast, which is served in the Louis C. Jones Center from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. All other activities, such as getting the chance to taste Jack Wax (hot syrup poured over snow), see the blacksmith working in his shop, and taking a spin on Empire State Carousel, are held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.

According to Garret Livermore, vise president of education at the museum, maple syrup activities can be traced back to the 1950s when a governors’ dispute ended up in a taste-off amongst several states at The Farmer’s Museum.

While pointing toward the Bump Tavern, Livermore said the museum still has the maple tree that Vermont Gov. Joseph B. Johnson gave as a gift at the time. He said New York Gov. William Averell Harriman gave Johnson a tree from New York in exchange. Sap from the Vermont tree is used for a portion of the sap that is used to boil down into syrup during Sugaring Off Sundays.

Farmer Wayne Coursen said he has been boiling sap into syrup and providing information about the maple syrup making process at the Sugaring Off Sundays event for 13 years. He said he tells visitors that the process dates back to the Native Americans.

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