Sticky and Sweet

We took a day trip this weekend up to the Maple Syrup Festival in Rockville, IN (near Turkey Run).   It was great fun to get out of town for a day.  The sun was so wonderful to see and it felt like spring is here to stay (which it probably isn’t, but I’m ignoring that).

The first part of our day was at the Parke County Fair Grounds.  They had a pancake breakfast with maple syrup and the best sausage patties we have ever had!  I had pretty low expectations of the food.  I have had my fair share of mediocre “breakfast with the firemen” or the Lions Club.  The food always tastes like it’s just out of the box, but this was different which was a good thing since we had to wait in line for about an hour to get our plates (in the picture above you can see all the people standing and waiting).  The pancakes were flavorful and the real maple syrup couldn’t be beat.  We were even able to purchase about 4 pounds of the sausage to take home.

One of the sugar camps in Rockville is run by the Smiley’s but we have no relation to them and they didn’t offer a “family” discount (although Kirk did try to talk them into cutting him in on a share of the “family” profits at the next shareholders’ meeting).


Eliza hates the sun in her eyes and we don’t have any sunglasses that fit her yet, so Papa gave her his for a moment’s relief.  (Sorry to have posted both of these pictures, but I couldn’t decide which one I liked best.)










We practiced with the camera’s timer feature and got a group photo.

After our bellies were full we went to visit some of the different maple syrup camps.  The mud was so bad, you can see that even a tractor’s tires weren’t enough to get into the back woods.  They had to wrap some serious chain around them.







Syrup is boiling away!  It takes about 70 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of maple syrup.

















Eliza loved watching the steam and all the people.  She didn’t take much of a nap because of all that was going on.

On our way to the Smiley’s Sugar Camp we passed this old school.  The building hadn’t been used for 35 years.   There were large trees growing up to the door as well as inside the building.  The school was built in 1920 and served as the only school in the area, averaging a graduating senior class of about 8 people per year.  They listed all the graduates, and we could see Smiley’s from the 20’s, 30’s, and 40’s.  I’m sure we’re somehow distantly related!




The floors had mostly collapsed as well as the roof, so as we looked in the windows we could see the sky.

The morning was simply gorgeous!  We had a great time and look forward to doing more day trips with Eliza this summer.

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