by Jill P
Looking for a family-friendly and educational event to attend right here in Kalamazoo? One of our family’s favorite late Winter/early Spring events is the Maple Sugar Festival at the Kalamazoo Nature Center. For our family, it’s a sign that Spring is just around the corner. (Even though there are years that we’ve been bundled up like it’s the middle of winter).
If you haven’t been to the Maple Sugar Festival yet, you’re in for a real treat! The Maple Sugar Festival is a two-day event that highlights all things good about the harvesting of Maple Syrup. This is one of our favorite programs that the Kalamazoo Nature Center has to offer.
50th Annual Maple Sugar Festival
What can you expect to find at the 50th Annual Maple Sugar Festival? Start your day with delicious pancakes smothered in real Michigan maple syrup! Or go back in time as you walk along a wooded trail with a Naturalist for a historical maple sugar tour. Experience our amazing Birds of Prey up close! The whole family will enjoy the sweet experience.
Don’t miss a visit to the DeLano Homestead during the festival to experience maple sugaring and life in the 1800s. Horse-drawn wagon rides and demonstrations by blacksmiths, spinners and fiber artists will round out the activities.
Schedule of Events
Saturday, March 14 and Sunday, March 15, 2015
Visitor Center from 9:00 am-5:00 pm
- 9:00 am-2 :00 pm* Pancake breakfast
- 9:00 am-5:00 pm Kids activities and crafts
- 9:30 am-4:00 pm Maple sugar tours depart from sundial every 15 minutes
- 10:30 am I Don’t Eat Pancakes, LIVE animal program featuring Great Horned Owl
- 12:30 pm LIVE Bird of Prey program: Hawk
- 2:00 pm Inspired by Nature: Guided hike on the Beech Maple Trail
- 3:30 pm LIVE Bird of Prey program: Owl
- 2:00-5:00 pm* Ice cream with maple syrup
*Additional fees for pancake breakfast, ice cream and maple cotton candy.
Inspired by Nature: Self-Guided Art & Nature Hike
Visit the Charley Harper exhibition, Nature Seen Through the Eyes of Charley Harper, in the Glen Vista Gallery, then step outside and explore nature with a different perspective. Picture frames have been placed around the Habitat Haven Trail highlighting nature’s beauty. See if you can find them all!
11:00 am-5:00 pm
- Pioneer sugaring demonstrations
- Horse-drawn wagon rides ($1/person, weather permitting)
- Blacksmithing demonstrations
- Spinning and fiber art demonstrations
- Kids’ activities
2:00-5:00 pm* Ice cream with maple syrup
*Additional fees for ice cream
Cost to Attend
Sign up for a KNC membership while you are there and they will deduct the price of admission!
Members free, Non-members $7/adult, $6/senior, $4/child (4 – 17 yrs), children 3 years and under are free.
NEW! Purchase tickets for your festival fun! Tickets are $1 each and can be used for:
- Pancake breakfast: 6 tickets (children 2 and under free)
- Ice cream w/real maple syrup: 3 tickets
- Cotton candy: 3 tickets
- Wagon ride: 1 ticket
Hope you can join the fun!