MORRISTOWN, NJ – Maple syrup is winter’s sugary treasure! The sap is flowing and the sugaring season is underway at the Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center in Chatham Township. Come experience all the sweet sights, sounds, and smells at one of the Maple Sugaring Demonstrations held on select Saturdays and Sundays in January, February, and March, from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Get involved in the process from start to finish by identifying and tapping maple trees, collecting sap, and seeing syrup made over a wood-fired evaporator. Think you can identify the differences between maple syrups? Take a taste test of three distinct maple syrups, a store bought syrup made from corn syrup, a farm produced syrup made from sugar maple trees, and the syrup made from the red maple trees at the Great Swamp OEC. Let us know which one you enjoy the most! Admission is $3 per person. 

The peak of the sugaring season is celebrated with the annual Maple Sugar Festival on Saturday, March 14, from 12 noon to 4 p.m. Head outside and watch smoke billow from the evaporator, and become engulfed in the sweet smell of maple sugar. Make maple cream first hand and taste the final product. Kids enjoy a variety of crafts and games, and maple snow cones. 

Bring your friends and family and take a fascinating guided ‘Hike Through Maple Sugaring History,’ to discover how sugaring has changed since it was started by the Native Americans hundreds of years ago. 

If you are thinking of making your own syrup at home, spiles are on sale along with easy instructions on how to get started. Purchase fresh, local, maple products from a maple sugar farmer and treat yourself to delicious food available for purchase. Festival admission is $4 per person, rain or shine. For more information please call the Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center at 973.635.6629

Maple Sugaring Demonstrations take place on the following dates: 

January: 17, 18, 24, 25 & 31 
February: 7, 8, 14, 15, 21, 22 & 28 
March: 1, 7 & 8