The Great New York State Fair is celebrating New York’s growing maple industry tomorrow, Monday, August 28, with the return of Maple Day at the Fair! Maple Day is sponsored by the New York State Maple Producers Association and will give fairgoers an opportunity to not only taste the delicious goodness of pure maple syrup but also to learn about it too.
New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, “We have a lot to be proud of when it comes to New York State agriculture, and that includes our tremendous maple industry and its producers. I’m excited that Maple Day is back at the State Fair again this year, educating our fairgoers about the maple production process and giving them a chance to sample the sweet goodness of pure New York maple syrup.”
State Fair Director Sean Hennessey said, “The Great New York State Fair is all about highlighting agriculture and about giving fairgoers an opportunity to experience something new. Maple Day at the Fair is a fun way to introduce our visitors to delicious maple syrup and unique maple products, while learning something along the way!”
Executive Director of the New York State Maple Producers Association Helen Thomas said, “I encourage everyone to come out and stop by the Mobile Classroom on Maple Day so they can see for themselves what we’re teaching our school children in grades K-12. We will also be highlighting all our wonderful maple products, so fairgoers should look for them at the Mobile Classroom and check out a full range of products in the Horticulture Building.”
The Maple Experience, or the Mobile Maple Classroom, is an interactive, educational exhibit in a 24-foot mobile trailer that travels around the New York State and teaches visitors about the maple industry. The mobile educational exhibit allows visitors to learn about the early discovery of maple syrup and observe the production process, including how trees are tapped and sap is extracted, collected, boiled, evaporated and subject to reverse osmosis. Hands-on interactive displays include modern power drills and plastic tubing syrup lines, as well as traditional bits and wooden sap spouts. The experience wraps up with tastings of samples of real maple syrup and maple syrup products. The Maple Experience was first unveiled at the Great New York State Fair in 2019 and, tomorrow, it will be parked in front of the Administration Building for fairgoers to visit between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. The Maple mascot “Leafy” will make appearances as well.
In addition, fairgoers can also sample and buy maple products, such as maple cotton candy, maple donuts, pancakes with maple syrup, and more, in the Horticulture Building.
Maple Day joins Agricultural Career Day, Beef Day, Dairy Day, and Grape and Apple Day in a lineup of special days created at the Fair to highlight and promote New York State agriculture.
New York maple producers experienced a record-breaking year in 2022, producing 845,000 gallons of maple syrup. New York State continues to rank second in the nation in maple production. New York is also home to the largest resource of tappable maple trees within the United States and more than 2,000 maple sugar makers. In 2022, New York’s maple industry used 2.9 million taps, tying 2021’s record for the largest number of taps used in a single year.
The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets supports the maple industry through the New York State Budget—which includes funding for promotion and educational programs—as well as through investments in research projects, such as Cornell University’s Maple Program’s Arnot Teaching Forest, and through its NYS Grown & Certified and Taste NY marketing programs.
The Great New York State Fair continues through Labor Day, Monday, September 4. Tickets are on sale now at The Fair’s website.
The New York State Fairgrounds is a 375-acre exhibit and entertainment complex that operates all year. Audiences are encouraged to learn more about the Great New York State Fair online, and follow the fun on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Guests are invited to see photos from the Fair on Flickr.