Living History Museums During Sugar Season

Living History Museums During Sugar Season

In Western Massachusetts, living history museums celebrate local history and early American living through maple sugaring demonstrations that recall the techniques, foods, and traditions connected to the sugaring season. Families can experience what maple sugaring was like in the days of old New England at living history events where museum interpreters dressed in period clothing demonstrate life and skills from Colonial New England, including: tree tapping, sumac spile making, sap boiling over a fire, open hearth cooking, and other early American skills. 

Every March, Old Sturbridge Village hosts Maple Days. For four weekends, visitors to the museum can learn how 19th century New Englanders processed maple syrup through hands-on demonstrations, giving them the opportunity to see the entire process from when the trees are tapped to sugaring off to cooking demonstrations of period foods with maple products.

Storrowton Village Museum in West Springfield also hosts an annual Maple Harvest Day for the community to learn about the historic tradition of maple sugaring through tree tapping and sap boiling demonstrations. Celebrate the soon-to-come warmer weather with your fellow community members at the Gilbert Farmstead home while also enjoying open hearth cooking demonstrations.

Check our list of Weekly Suggested Events for living history events during sugar season!

[Photo credit: (c) Sienna Wildfield]


Download our March/April edition of Learning Ahead: Cultural Itinerary for Western Massachusetts for embedded learning opportunities found in cultural resources that exist within the geography, history, and cultural traditions of Western Massachusetts.

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