After living in the Cincinnati area for 34 years (okay, 34 and a half), I’m always pleasantly surprised to visit someplace I’ve never been. A great way to accomplish this is to plan on taking part in one of the MANY activities happening at one of the Great Parks of Hamilton County. We decided to head to Mitchell Memorial Forest in Cleves this past weekend to get a (literal) taste of maple mania, which is going on for the next few weeks.
When we arrived at the trail where the maple event was taking place, we decided to go for a hike first and then learn about the making of the syrup. It was a beautiful February day and the trail was perfect for our 4 and 2-year-olds. It’s exciting to think that there are so many of these trails throughout these parks, just minutes from downtown. We felt like we were hours away and the silence was pure joy.
At the head of the trail, a Great Parks maple syrup expert had a table set up with a tree nearby that had been tapped. He was great with our kids and explained the process of making the syrup and made sure we had to the opportunity to taste both the sap and the finished product. I was surprised that the sap wasn’t really sweet! It takes A LOT of that stuff to make the maple syrup we’re used to. But wow, was the final syrup delicious. I immediately began to crave a big stack of pancakes.
I can honestly say I didn’t know much about maple syrup until this outing, but it was very interesting! The kids enjoyed taste testing and hiking and we all enjoyed the fresh air. There are many other maple syrup events happening the next few weeks at various parks. The main event is the weekend of February 25th and 26th at Farbach-Werner Nature Preserve in Colerain. Unlike Mitchell Memorial, I know Farbach-Werner very well and if you’ve never been there, I highly recommend a visit! Maple Sugar Days is the perfect event to try it out! For more information on the Great Parks of Hamilton County, check out their site here.
A native Cincinnatian, Andrea has experienced life in all four corners of this city. After growing up on the west side, she headed north to attend Miami University, then moved east to Hyde Park and now lives in Northern Kentucky with her family.
When she’s not playing trains and doing the “hot dog dance” as a stay-at-home mom to her two toddlers, Andrea is busy writing for Cincinnati publications and brainstorming ideas for her next children’s book! With a newfound passion for fitness and overall health, she spends a lot of time at her family gym and loves to play outside.
Andrea worked in education for several years and has a special love for children’s literature. She loves showing her children all our city has to offer and enjoys sharing her finds with other parents. Her favorite spots include the Cincinnati Zoo (although she steers clear of the bird house), her local library and any playground.