Despite some early concerns, Eugene Fisher, the past president of the Vermontville Maple Syrup Corporation Festival, isn’t worried about the maple syrup production this year.
“With all those warm days, we thought it might be a short season, but we’re going to be okay. The colder weather helped tremendously; we’ll still be able to collect sap,” he said.
President of the festival organizers for 25 years, Fisher is excited about the annual Vermontville Syrup Festival set for April 28, 29 and 30 this year, the 77th year of the festival.
“We are the largest in the State of Michigan and the grand daddy of them all,” he said.
Some the events packed into the three days in the center of the village are two parades, professional entertainment, fireworks, amusements rides, arts and crafts, egg throwing, arm wrestling and pancake eating contests, pedal pull, petting zoo, flea market, Little Princess contest, appearances by the Vermontville Maple Syrup Queen and her Court, talent show and historical displays.
At Maple Manor, the entire process of making maple syrup made from sap to syrup and sugar will be explained and maple syrup producers will be in town selling syrup, candies, crème and maple syrup cotton candy.
And, of course, you are invited to enjoy pancakes with real maple syrup, hosted by the Maple Valley Band Boosters and the American Legion. “And it’s all one place, not scattered around. It’s all right here in the center of town,” Fisher said. //
Some maple syrup in Michigan facts:
*Michigan’s maple syrup industry is the fifth largest in the country.
*Average maple syrup production averages about 90,000 gallons a year.
*There are an estimated 500 commercial producers in Michigan, with some 2,000 additional hobby or home use producers.
*Only one percent of Michigan maple forest resources are used in maple syrup production.
*A gallon of standard maple syrup weighs 11 pounds and has a sugar content of 66 percent.
*Maple syrup is the first farm crop harvested in Michigan every year.
(Information from the Michigan Maple Syrup Association)