Maple trees are a staple in New York; not only do they serve as a beautiful part of our landscape, but they are also the key ingredient in a growing, sustainable industry— maple sugaring. Currently, New York is the second-largest producer of maple syrup in the United States and, in 2018, New York hit a 74-year record with a production of 806,000 gallons of maple syrup. In addition to producing pure maple syrup, the industry has ventured into maple products, with many farms creating items such as soaps and lotions, ice cream and cotton candy, maple cream, and more.
Many farms provide tours of their property and sugar shacks throughout the season, while some are only open to the public for Maple Weekends, which will occur March 23 & 24, and March 30 & 31. Start planning now, as there is much to see and do throughout the Valley this spring.
477 Beaverkill Road, Olivebridge
On Sunday, March 24, Ashokan Center’s annual Maple Fest will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Featured events include maple syrup demos and tastings, guided tours of the sugar shack, colonial style crafts, live music, and guided hikes to the newly restored 1885 covered bridge and cathedral gorge. Pancakes with house-made maple syrup, and maple bacon, are available throughout the day.
185 Fuller Rd, Jefferson
The farm’s “famous breakfast” is a full country feast, including omelets from their own eggs, pork and bacon sausage from pigs they’ve raised, dairy from local producers, and, of course, pancakes, French toast, and maple granola served with their own maple syrup. The farm will be open both weekends on Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. on Maple Weekend. Tours are being offered.
105 Hawley’s Corners Rd, Highland
Their new flavor, garlic maple syrup, is flying off their shelves — it’s perfect for marinades and BBQ sauce. Their store, located in front of the sugar shack, is open every day after 5 p.m. during the season, or you can purchase products online. On Maple Weekends from 10 a.m. to 4p.m., stop by for tours where you can taste sap out of the trees, learn about the different ways to make maple syrup, and see their new reverse-osmosis machine.
120 Muser Drive, Cornwall
Saturdays and Sundays, from February 23–March 17, Hudson Highlands Nature Museum offers two different tours — Maple Lane for little legs and Sugar Bush for the active type — where you can learn the whole maple process. Find out how to identify a maple tree with or without its leaves, taste sap directly from the trees, and see the different techniques used by Native Americans and pioneers up to modern-day farmers.
436 Van Wyck Lake Rd, Fishkill
The Annual Sugar Maple Celebration will be held on March 23, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Open to the entire community free of charge, this is a unique opportunity to visit the reservation and learn how to tap a tree, participate in tasting contests with local producers, view planetarium shows, enjoy maple-oriented refreshments, learn about maple in their sugar shack, and even pick up some information on becoming a volunteer host family for a Fresh Air child over the summer.
2000 Frost Valley Rd, Claryville
During Maple Weekends, Frost Valley YMCA will host tours on how pure maple syrup is made and how to identify a sugar maple tree. You can tour the evaporator, and try a sample of fresh syrup. Reservations not required unless you plan to stay for the weekend.
59 Cottage St, Salt Point
Visit in person or online for everything from traditional maple syrup, cream, and candies to the more unique hot sauce, coffee, and mustard. Look out for a store event during the spring to celebrate maple season.
The History of Maple Syrup
47 McCourt Road, Dover Plains
Visit Madava Farms for tasting tours, where you learn their entire process that culminates in a four-stage maple tasting. Begin or end with lunch at The Farm Stand restaurant and tour their gift shop. The grounds are also available for hikes and picnics. During Maple Weekends, they will feature complimentary tastings, a maple-inspired lunch, Crown Maple cocktails, tree-tapping demonstrations, and a variety of local Hudson Valley vendors.
93 Dupier Road, Ghent
Visit Maple Leaf Sugaring for tours of their 80-acre farm and facilities during Maple Weekends. For private tours during other times, call in advance.
107 C Crapser Rd, Cobleskill
During Maple Weekends, stop by for tractor rides through the forest and a detailed explanation of the maple process from owner Victor Putnam, who is a fifth-generation maple producer. Learn about his patent-pending environmentally friendly stainless-steel taps — Maple Infinity Spiles — and view the boiling process. Their store is open Wednesday through Saturday from 10 a.m.–5 p.m., where you can purchase syrup, maple sugar, granulated sugar, maple cream, maple glazed nuts, and other maple foods. Maple Weekend tour hours are Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; tours on other weekends are available by appointment.
52 Bell Lane, West Shokan
Marty began making maple syrup with his grandfather and uncle in the early 1950s and began his own farm with just two maples and buckets in front of his home. During Maple Weekends he’ll provide tours, and sell various products such as maple popcorn and maple donuts, maple lollipops, and maple drops. Tours on other weekends are available by appointment.
271 Halls Corners Road, Dover Plains
Originally a dairy farm, Soukup has been making and selling maple syrup since 1955; now, the syrup is being made and sold by a third generation. Tours are provided throughout Maple Weekends, where you can learn the process of tapping trees, boiling, and filtering. Check out their new infused coffee syrup, using Irving Farm Coffee Roasters’ dark roast. It’s good on yogurt but best over vanilla ice cream. Call ahead to book a tour on other weekends.
75 Mountain Laurel Lane, Cold Spring
Popular attractions within the center include Maple Leaf Sugar Grove and Sweet Tree Sugar Shack. There will be tree-tapping demonstrations; also, learn the correct procedures for making maple syrup.
1600 Spring Valley Rd, Ossining
Members and nonmembers can participate in their three sugaring Sundays on February 24, March 3, and March 10. Tours, brunch, and a sugaring program are available throughout the days. You can also rent a bucket for $45, which will get your name on a sap bucket on a tree, an 8-ounce bottle of syrup, and two tickets to the pancake brunch on March 16. Reserve early; this event sells out.
For Maple Weekends: 251 Rider Hollow Road, Arkville
For all other visits: 59 Rider Hollow Road
Join Tree Juice’s CSA and get your maple fix for the year at a discounted price for half-gallons, full gallons, or even multiple gallons. During Maple Weekends you can tour their facilities and purchase hats, t-shirts, and their flavored syrups. Their personal favorite? Zesty lemon, which is great on blueberry pancakes and as a dip for fried chicken.
The History of Maple Syrup
680 Croton Lake Rd, Yorktown Heights
As one of the few commercial maple syrup producers in Westchester and the southernmost commercial maple syrup producer in New York, they receive thousands of visitors during Maple Weekends. Take a tour, participate in tastings and demonstrations, stroll through the woods, or enjoy a pancake breakfast nearby at Hilltop Hanover. Their store is open on Saturdays and Sundays year-round, and weekdays by appointment.
140 Eatontown Road, Middletown
Finding Home Farms has recently blossomed from “backyard sugar makers” to operating a new sugarhouse. Check their website for hours to tour the sugarhouse, shop in their store, and taste their organic maple syrup. Each Saturday there is live music from 4-7p.m.