9 Family-Friendly Maple Syrup Weekends

Give me some (maple) sugar! Grab the kids and enjoy one of these events dedicated to the making of the sweet stuff


Frost Valley YMCA’s Sugar House

Upstate New York’s maple syrup starts flowing this month, which means maple syrup-themed weekends are all the rage. Why go? How about a sample of the region’s best, poured over warm flapjacks. Other draws: history lessons, live demonstrations, and up-close looks at the syrup-making process. Here’s our full list of syrup season’s top events this year. Did we miss any? Add them as a comment below!

Hudson Highlands Nature Museum, Cornwall

Until March 22, the museum will offer maple sugar tours, where guests venture into the forest to learn about the history of maple syrup and how it’s made. And after the hour-long tour, come back to the farmhouse for a taste test to see if you can decipher the store brand from the farm brand.
Saturdays and Sundays 10:30 a.m.-3 p.m. $10, $7 children. 845-534-5506; www.hhnaturemuseum.org

Ashokan Center’s Maple Fest, Olivebridge

Become a maple syrup expert and tap trees for sap at the Ashokan Sugar Shack. Enjoy several other activities, such as blacksmithing and hiking. Plus, the center will be flipping flapjacks all day long, so help yourself to some sweet lovin’.
March 7. Call for times. 845-657-8333; www.ashokancenter.org

Taconic Outdoor Education Center at Fahnestock State Park, Cold Spring

Eat some ’cakes and learn how to harvest, boil, and produce your own maple syrup. Sounds like a sticky situation!
March 8. 8:30 a.m.-noon. $8, $6 children. 845-265-3773; www.nyparks.com

Frost Valley YMCA, Claryville

Frost Valley YMCA will host its annual Maple Sugaring Open House, where guests can learn how the product is made, identify a sugar maple tree, see the evaporator, and try some fresh syrup straight from the sap house.
March 21-22, 28-29. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Claryville. 845-985-2291; www.frostvalley.org

Niese’s Maple Farm, Putnam Valley

Join Niese’s Maple Farm for its 35th Maple Weekend. Take a tour of the sugar house, and travel back in time to when the Native Americans and pilgrims made maple syrup. Then observe a demonstration of how the farm makes it today. Also, enjoy a pancake breakfast, horse-drawn hayrides, and live music, as well as other maple goodies from the 123-year-old farm. Gnaw on some maple pies and doughnuts from the oldest maple producers in southern New York.
March 21-22, 28-29. 9 a.m.-3 p.m. $10, $6 children 4-10, free under 4. 845-526-3748; www.niesesmaplefarm.com

Soukup Farms, Dover Plains

Take a spin around Soukup Farms’ brand new sugar house, where guides will be demonstrating how to make maple syrup. And did we mention it’s free?
March 21-22, 28-29. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 845-264-3137; www.soukupfarms.com

Sugar Oak Farms, Malta (near Saratoga Springs)

The farm will host its fifth annual open house for the last two weekends in March. Guests can embark on a tour of the farm’s brand new sugarhouse, gain some knowledge about the history of maple sugaring, and sip on some sweet maple coffee.
March 21-22, 28-29. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Free admission. 518-288-8653; www.sugaroakfarms.com

Tree Juice Maple Syrup, Arkville

Resting soundly in the Catskills, Tree Juice offers tours of its farm, Lazy Crazy Acres, with opportunities for patrons to gather their own syrup and try Tree Juice’s maple products.
March 21-22, 28-29. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. www.treejuicemaplesyrup.com

Hummingbird Ranch at Hahn Farm, Staatsburg

This year you can extend your maple festivities with Hummingbird Ranch. Maple Weekend usually takes place during the last two weekends in March, but Hummingbird’s is slated for two weeks later at Frances J. Mark Memorial Park in Clinton. That’s all that’s changed, though — you can still enjoy a pancake breakfast, learn how syrup is made, and nosh on maple cotton candy.
April 11-12. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 845-266-0084; www.hummingbirdranch.biz

Related: Local Woman Taps Her Own Maple Syrup, Opens Business

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