We attended the 51st annual Maple Festival up in Highland County today. Good times! This year we didn't take in as much as we've done in years past, choosing to skip the craft shows and displays over at the school in favor of visiting two sugar camps. We even missed the cloggers at the Highland Center - something Hannah will probably realize around midnight tonight and berate us for in the darkness.
That is, if she ever gets to sleep. We let them each buy their own 100ml jugs of maple syrup and taste them in the car. What was supposed to be a couple of tiny sips turned out to be two big chug-a-lugs by my sugar-lovin' gal. Thank goodness for seatbelt laws - it was the only way to restrain the sugar high she experienced on the way home!
Next year we'll plan more before we go to the festival by reading up on how maple syrup is made. We checked out the only two books on the topic that the Clifton Forge Library had on Friday and didn't get a chance to read them until we were on our way. Since I had to keep a wary eye on Andy's driving and hold on with one hand and shout directions out (slow down! watch that car! they're braking! look over in the field!), it probably wasn't the most effective lesson. And then he got tired of my hollering and made me drive, which really put a damper on learning.
Anyways, we visited the Puffenbarger Farm and Rexrode Farm. Puffenbarger's was a more modern operation - sorry, no pictures - than Rexrode's, but Rexrode's was less crowded (there was a tour bus at the other one!) and we got to talk to the owner for quite awhile. Of course, both farms sold maple fudge, syrup and maple candy, and we freely partook of their offerings. Andy commented that we'll have to expand our Maple Festival Budget next year to accommodate all of our sweet stuff.
On the way home we drove through Blue Grass, Virginia and found ourselves north of Monterrey. It was a bit of a shock when the route we came out on was 220 South - which we wanted - but was named "Potomac River Road." Where we live, 220 is named "Jackson River Road." It was cloudy most of the day, so we couldn't tell what direction we had been travelling. We had been going north rather than south as we'd figured. We must have reached a point where the creeks flowed into the Potomac River, and the river we thought was the Jackson was actually the Potomac. This is significant because we know the Potomac flows into Washington, D.C., and is way off our radar.
Anyways, I hope you enjoy the pictures on the following post*. If you're nearby, the Maple Festival is definitely a fun time for all and a worthwhile destination!
*I typed this blog in Word first and uploaded pictures directly to Blogger second. I cannot for the life of me figure out how to merge the two!