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Numbers up for CLOCA Maple Syrup Festival

More than 11,000 people attended this year’s edition of the CLOCA Maple Syrup Festival.

By Aly Beach/The Oshawa Express

More than 11,000 people flocked to the 43rd annual Purple Woods Maple Syrup Fest for pancakes, maple syrup and more.

“It’s just a good way to start spring, it’s a good time to make maple syrup. It’s a great time for people to get outside and look forward to the spring time weather and see how we’re producing maple syrup,” says Yvonne Storm, festival coordinator for the Central Lake Ontario Conservation Authority (CLOCA).

The festival is a tradition for many families, according to Storm. At the event, visitors saw the Purple Woods sugar shack and got a look at how maple syrup is produced. They can also watch how the syrup was made more than 400 years ago.

Visitors enjoyed pancakes with locally-made maple syrup, warm refreshments and maple taffy.

The Oshawa Museum was also present at the event with its pioneer display “Aunt Penny’s Cabin” which displayed artifacts and explained how pioneers used maple syrup.

On April 6, the maple syrup fest held their first sugar bush lantern walk. Over 100 visitors participated in a self-guided tour, had some dessert, watched interpreters and learned about maple syrup production.

Storm says even though they went from their typical 13-day festival to a 12-day festival, attendance was up.

The event, which takes months to prepare, wrapped up April 8. Although the festival is finished, Storm says they still have about two weeks of maple syrup production time, depending on the weather