I received an unsolicited email from my father about a sugar maple festival not to far from my house. Following the link, I found that it was for the previous year. However, some persistent web searching showed that it was the first weekend in February this year. This sounded like the perfect type of outdoor activity that we needed to participate in. We would need to dress warm and hurry as we had a basketball game earlier in the day. We dressed in warm clothes and headed out to the festival. Its located in Rockwoods Reservation (Wildwood, MO 63040). This would be an easy commute as its in the St. Louis metro area.
When we got to the reservation, it was full! By that I mean that there was no parking. The attendant turned us around and sent us to a local middle school where there was parking and a shuttle bus to bring people in. This has been going on for a few years now as they are quite organized with their operation. Back at the middle school, we parked and stood in line for our turn to ride one of the shuttle buses to the festival. It turns out that yellow school buses are big on the outside but tiny on the inside.
When we got to the festival, we found that there were people everywhere! This was certainly a big deal. In the main area, there were lines for every event. We started in line for the kettle corn made with maple syrup! We all enjoyed the tasty unique popcorn.
Before I forget, we took a photo of a QR-code that also has a website discussing all about how the sugar maple process works. I won’t try to repeat them here.
Some of the kids activities included trying to start a fire with a stick and rope and carrying water buckets with a yolk
The final part was a tour of the woods with four different stages of capturing and processing sugar maple sap. Its one thing to read about it, but another completely to see the work that goes into creating maple syrup.
If we go again, we’ll make sure to dress warmer, it was just a touch too cold outside!