Sunday, January 23, 2011

Wakarusa Maple Syrup Festival

The following announcement gives you an idea of the distinctly local flavor of this popular northern Indiana festival (dates this year are April 15 and 16, 2011, in Wakarusa, Indiana):

The Elkhart County Community Foundation has awarded the Wakarusa Historical Society in conjunction with the Wakarusa Maple Syrup Festival Sugar Camp and Wakarusa Chamber of Commerce grant monies to purchase "Boiling Pans" and "Evaporator"

For over 40 years area school children grades 2 – 4 are formally invited and everyone is welcome to take the educational tour of a working Maple Sugar Camp!

Existing pans and evaporator are privately owned by the Amish men who have run the camp for 10 years; Eli Kuhns and Wilbur Miller, both syrup manufacturers by trade. Previously Wilbur would bring his own pans to town to be used during Education Days (the third week in March) and during the Maple Syrup Festival (third weekend in April) to provide the FREE working Sugar Camp Tours. With March, being prime tapping time, Wilbur would have to take the sap he gathered at his home to Eli’s house to boil, as his pans were being used for Education Days.

The Wakarusa Historical Society and Maple Syrup Festival Committee and the Wakarusa Chamber of Commerce are indebted with gratitude to these two men for all they have done to keep this important tradition alive but would like to properly own the pans and the evaporator. This would free these men from sacrificing their own equipment as well as provide the added security that the camp can exist when and if these men decide to retire and another take their place.

There are all sorts of maple-themed events (go online to see them all), including lots of chances to taste all things maple.

The annual event is sponsored by the Wakarusa Chamber of Commerce.

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