Old-style sugarhouse dedication Saturday at Power and Equipment Museum in Madrid
Thursday, June 10, 2010 - 2:41 pm

MADRID -- The public, along with St. Lawrence County Maple Association members, maple producers, and those curious about early maple sugarmaking, are invited to this Saturday's official dedication of a new maple sugarhouse.

The dedication is at the St. Lawrence Power and Equipment Museum just southeast of Madrid on State Route 345, which is having its annual exhibition Saturday and Sunday.

New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets Commissioner Patrick Hooker and local officials and dignitaries will be at the dedication in recognition of the maple industry and its heritage.

The sugarhouse was constructed in the manner of an early 1900s maple syrup-making facility by the St. Lawrence County Maple Producers Association, in collaboration with the St. Lawrence Power and Equipment Museum. It will be dedicated during the antique gas and steam engine exhibition at the museum on June 12.

Visitors will see the sugarhouse fitted out with vintage equipment, including evaporators, sap and syrup holding tanks, buckets, spiles, and more. Most of this historical equipment was acquired from donors in the area and are actual pieces of maple history.

The 16-by-24-foot sugarhouse with attached woodshed and instructional area will be staffed Saturday by Maple Association members who will explain maple sugaring from tap to syrup and table. The sugarhouse will also show a DVD on sugaring, and there will be static displays of old-time equipment and more modern elements of the Cornell Cooperative Extension Maple Program, to show how times have changed.

Maple Association members will manage the facility to help preserve maple sugaring history, and to help achieve the Association's mission of teaching about and promotion of maple products.