Maple Harvest Festival to give visitors firsthand look at how maple syrup is made

NORTH JAVA, N.Y. (WIVB) — This weekend you can learn about all things maple syrup and check out demonstrations at a Maple Harvest festival at the Beaver Meadow Audubon Center. You can also learn how to make jack wax, which is hot maple syrup on snow.

“You heat it up to around 230-250 degrees so we always keep it at a rolling boil, and then when it hits the snow it starts to solidify the sugar crystals start to harden and within a minute or so it’s pretty hard almost like a lollipop,” said Lauren Makeyenko, Buffalo Audubon Society Director of Education.

It takes 40 gallons of tree sap to produce 1 gallon of maple syrup. It’s about a 10 hour process that all starts outdoors.

“We have demonstrations on all sorts of historical ways that maple syrup has been made from tapping trees, to our sugar shanty, to making maple sugar in a log,” said Makeyenko.

Once you tap the tree then you head to the sugar shanty, where the sap is boiled in an evaporator.

“We have to take the water out of the sap. Sap this year is 2% which is a little higher than normal so we’ll have to use less sap to produce a gallon of maple sugar,” said Mark Carra, Buffalo Audubon Society Naturalist.

According to the Buffalo Audubon Society. Wyoming County is the largest producer of maple syrup in the state.

“A lot of small time producers produce their own maple syrup and sell it, in order to be a New York state made syrup it has to start here and finish here,” said Carra.

Yuu also have a chance to win prizes through a basket raffle that’s happening at the festival.

The maple harvest festival is taking place Saturday and Sunday. For more information go to provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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