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National Maple Syrup Festival In Medora This Weekend
Updated May 5, 2013 1:06 AM | Filed under: WBIW News
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(MEDORA) - When Indiana's top agriculture official leads a ceremonial sugar maple tapping Saturday near Medora, he'll help mark the opening day of the fourth annual National Maple Syrup Festival. (Times Mail)

Joe Kelsey, director of the Indiana Department of Agriculture, will be at the festival at noon.

The celebration will take place Saturday and Sunday and on March 10-11 at Tim and Angie Burton's Maplewood Farm, 8121 W. County Road 75 South.

"Indiana is the southernmost state in the U.S. Maple Belt," said Tim Burton, co-founder of the festival.

The festival website reads, "Though there are about 100 maple syrup producers in Indiana and countless festivals, this is the first and only national maple syrup festival in America."

Visitors can expect to learn about the modern-day maple sugaring process once the sap rises up out of the trees, as well as the history of maple sugaring from American Indian and French historic encampments.

The festival also features live music, booths from Indiana artisans and food ranging from pancakes and sausage to maple pork chops and maple baked beans.

The festival begins at Medora School, where pancakes and sausage are served and the Sweet Victory Challenge baking and cooking competition takes place.

The competition is sponsored by the Vermont-based King Arthur Flour, the oldest flour company in the country. Judging takes place in the youth division on Saturday and on March 10 for the adult division.

Visitors to the farm can see more than 700 sugar maple trees, Pat's Snack Shack and Mellencamp Maplehouse, which is a large evaporator that boils the tree sap down to syrup. The Maplehouse also features the country's largest Rumford fireplace.

Admission and parking

Parking is at Medora School. A shuttle takes visitors to the farm. Cost for the shuttle is $10 for adults, $8 for seniors 65 and older and $6 for children ages 5 to 15. The shuttle is free for those age 4 and younger. Each person who brings a canned good for local pantries will be given $2 off the price.

Parking will be available at Maplewood Farm for those who are handicapped. But those individuals need to report to the school to buy a bracelet. The bracelet will allow entrance to the farm. The vehicle must have a handicapped plate or tag.

Fundraising event

The festival is an annual fundraiser for the Heads Up Foundation, which was founded by Kenny and Kelly Turner.

The Turners are the parents of Katelyn Turner, who was born with a cleft lip and palate.
The Turners have established the Heads Up Foundation in order to help support the efforts of the health care organizations caring for children with craniofacial abnormalities.

The Festival

What: Fourth annual National Maple Syrup Festival

When: Saturday and Sunday, and March 10-11

Where: Tim and Angie Burton's Maplewood Farm, 8121 W. County Road 75 South in Medora.

A variety of additional attractions are offered at the festival. For a complete list of events and activities, visit

All live music will be in the dining room of Pat's Snack Shack.

The schedule:


Noon: Infinity
1 p.m.: Sweetgrass
2 p.m.: Leatherwood Valley
3 p.m.: Pete & Jessie
4 p.m.: Green Pastures


Noon: Leatherwood Valley
1 p.m.: Lost River Risin
2 p.m.: Leatherwood Valley
3 p.m.: Kyper Creek
4 p.m.: Hoosier Hills

March 10:

Noon: Swango Family
1 p.m.: Leatherwood Valley
2 p.m.: New Terrain
3 p.m.: Pete & Jessie
4 p.m.: Mount Liberty Way

March 11

Noon: Margie Delph
1 p.m.: Lost River Risin
2 p.m.: Leatherwood Valley
3 p.m.: Blue Mafia Band
4 p.m.: The Woodsmalls

Other activities:

The Old West Players: An Old West re-enactment group based in southern Indiana will perform on both days of the festival's first weekend.
Old McMaple's Petting Zoo: Youngsters can pet a variety of animals and ride a miniature pony.

Children's activity area: Kids can try their skills at weaving their own pot holder, can assist in a rope-making demonstration, can color a favorite festival picture or can explore the woods and enjoy a scavenger hunt.

Guided tour: Visitors can see a working sugarbush operation. Tours provide an up-close look at how syrup is produced.

Horse-drawn wagon rides: Visitors can see fresh-tapped maple trees and sip on hot apple cider while on a horse-drawn ride.

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