Mechanical, Groundskeeping and Construction Students Are Busy with the Annual Tradition of Tapping Sugar Maple Trees
Mechanical, Groundskeeping and Construction students are busy with the annual tradition of tapping sugar maple trees. With temperatures below freezing at night and above freezing during the day, tis the season for making maple syrup. Under supervision of instructors Mr. Hall and Mr. Lynch, both junior and senior labs partake in the process.
The maple syrup operation at Maplewood Career Center has been a long standing tradition. Sugar maple trees have been tapped on this property for over the last 100 years, long before the school was built.
Students tap the trees and the sap runs into collection bags and buckets. Students retrieve the sap on a daily basis, for about five weeks. Students pour the sap into a 150 gallon collection tank. The collection tank feeds into an evaporator, where the sap turns into syrup over the course of about three hours. From the evaporator, the syrup is filtered for sugar sand. Finally, to the canning unit, where jars are filled with fresh syrup and sealed for sale.
The taps will eventually dry out when temperatures are above freezing. The trees start to bud, and the sap stops flowing. Taps are removed until next year.
Maplewood has about 450 taps in the sugar bush on school property.
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