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from the good earth

Bonhomie Acres Maple sugaring for over a century By Teresa Woodard • Photography by Robin Oatts

It’s 1936 and a sunny winter day on the Brown farm in Knox County. Eight-year-old Bill Brown pulls on his boots, ready to tromp through the snow to help his father and grandpa gather buckets of maple sap and load them on the horse-drawn wagon headed for the sugarhouse. Just days ago, they tapped the farm’s grove of sugar maple trees, and Bill cheered at the first “plink-plink” sounds of sap hitting the bucket. No doubt, the on-setting flow of sap brings many smiles as it signals winter’s lock is over, and spring is on the way. Back at the patchwork sugarhouse made of odds and ends from around the farm, neighbors begin to arrive and help as Grandpa feeds the wood-fired evaporator. He looks at the past 20 years’ yields marked on the sugarhouse wall and predicts this year will be a better one given all the snow and cold weather. As he cooks the sap, family and neighbors share updates on their winters and reminisce farm memories including ones from the popular Waterford Picnic festival, which attracted thousands of visitors to the maple tree grove at the turn of the century. Bill enjoys these stories plus larger-than-life tales of Native American hunters who first discovered the sweet liquid. 38



Profile for Edible Columbus

Edible Columbus Winter 2014 Issue  

Edible Columbus Winter 2014 Issue