Sap flows during spring celebration

March 16th, 2007    Author: Michael Bradley    Filed Under: News

The Clermont County Park District celebrated the arrival of Spring, and the much anticipated demise of Winter, with “Pancakes In The Park” March 10.

Spring is the season that the sap begins flowing up the trunks of sugar maple trees in order to nourish the buds and leaves that are starting to flourish. This is the time to collect that sap which is used to make maple syrup.

Held at the Pattison Park Lodge in Owensville and sponsored by the Bethel Boy Scout Troop #196 and the Grassy Run Historical Arts Committee, the second annual pancake breakfast was attended by more than 300 people.

“We are very pleased with the turnout,” said Chief Naturalist Keith Robinson. “We do the Pancakes in the Park breakfast as a fun way for people to follow the long process of syrup making from the tree to the breakfast plate.”

Grant Fishback, 7, listens attentively to Park District Representative Ken Stewart, who was onhand to explain the drilling process of removing sap from the sugar maple trees.
After wandering through a sugar bush trail and following the process of tapping the trees, removing buckets of sap, and finally, the boiling process, participants enjoyed the pancakes made from 100 percent pure Ohio maple syrup.

Ohio is the fourth largest producer of maple syrup in the U.S., said park district director Chris Clingman.

Cries of delight could be heard from the many children who practiced and learned how to drill for the sap (or sugar water) of a maple sugar tree.

Sugar maple trees have a high sap content of about two to three percent sugar water. With this two percent sugar content, 40 gallons of sap is required to make only one gallon of syrup.

"Syrup making is an annual rite of Spring," said Clingman. "This event is our chance to encourage people to get out of the house, celebrate the arrival of warmer weather, educate people about the trees in the area, and show them the cool and interesting process of how maple syrup is made."

And provide a delicious breakfast in the process.
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