Wanted: Addison County farms, sugarmakers, more for Vermont Maple 100

Editor’s note: This article is by Lou Varricchio, editor of The Sun. It is republished here with permission.

Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets officials are looking for Addison County farms, food businesses, sugarmakers, restaurants, breweries, lodging partners, producer associations, food system organizations, recreation,  tourism partners, and more to participate in the Vermont Maple 100 celebration of all things maple from Sept. 15 through Oct. 15.

This is a chance for Addison County-area agribusinesses (as well as brewmasters, bakers, restaurants, and more) to get creative and help showcase the many uses of local maple products at the Maple 100.

Wikimedia Commons/Dvortygirl

It’s  free to participate and there are many options for how to be involved.

Farms and other maple-related businesses in the Middlebury-Bristol-Vergennes area participated last year but there’s no guarantee they will return, so agency officials are reaching out for new or repeat participants.

“The Vermont Maple 100 is a month-long, annual promotion that highlights  hundreds of maple activities, adventures, and maple-inspired products,” according to an agency Facebook posting.  ”This fall, the Vermont Agency of Agriculture is celebrating the  Maple 100, in partnership with Vermont Tourism, and organizations from all  across the state, to promote events, specialty products, and learning resources to discover new ways to enjoy Vermont’s sweetest treat.”

It’s  free to participate and there are many options for how to be involved, according to the agency. Here is a list of last year’s events that may inspire repeat or new participants:

1. Scavenger hunts can be held in a sugarbush or around the farm.

2. Is your business on the Vermont Maple Creemee Trail? If not, contact the agency and consider joining the Maple 100. Many “creemee” stands are open through October with some open all year.

3. How about a guided, educational walk through a sugarbush?

4. Beer and maple: 19 breweries incorporate maple into over 25 different seasonal brews. Newcomers are welcome, too.

5. Not a beer fan and looking for other ways to enjoy Vermont in a can? In Addison County, there’s Champlain Orchard’s Mac and Maple hard cider with maple syrup from the Gateway Farm in Bristol. You can consider similar product offerings using local maple syrup.

6. Local restaurants can find creative ways to put maple on the menu and as part of Vermont’s Maple 100.

7. Taste a new flavor of maple: showcase your maple-glazed barbecue or maple walnut scones.

8. Vermont’s sugar makers may consider opening their doors and farms with fun and educational opportunities for the whole family.

9. Vermont Department of Libraries and Rooted in Vermont are partnering up with libraries across the state to explore the abundance of food that can be found right in the backyard of Vermonters.

10. Virtual tours and other online maple events.

For details and to apply, click here.

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/Dvortygirl