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Maple Syrup Festival

Submitted by on March 27, 2013 – 8:49 amNo Comment

indiana_wakarusa_maple2013One of the last syrup festivals of the season takes place in Elkhart County, Indiana, toward the end of next month.

A Maple Syrup Festival is set for April 19 and 20, 2013, in downtown Wakarusa (map).

Like most small town festivals, there’s all sorts of fun — from craft, commercial and food vendors to face-painting and a carnival plus a parade, entertainment, museum tours and free (!) popcorn.

Oh, yes: you can buy locally-produced maple syrup, too.

Here’s how the festival organizers recount the origins of the sweet goodness:

As the legend goes, Woksis was going hunting one day early in March. He yanked his tomahawk from the tree where he had hurled it the night before, and went off for the day. The weather turned warm and the gash in the tree, a maple, dripped sap into a pot that happened to stand close to the trunk.

Woksis’s wife, needing water in which to cook dinner, is supposed to have used the pot full of sap thinking that would save her a trip to get water. She tasted it and found it good — a little sweet, but not bad. So she used it for the cooking water.

Woksis, when he came home from hunting, was greeted by the smell of the sap that having been boiled down, was now syrup.

Maple syrup and honey were some of the most important substances in the Native American diet — an estimated 12 percent of the calories consumed.

(Photo courtesy of Wakarusa Chamber of Commerce)

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