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CT Bucket List: Brooksvale Sugar Shack in Hamden

Here’s a debate: Do you like fake maple syrup or the real stuff?

HAMDEN, Conn. — Today FOX61's Margaux Farrell took us to a farm in Hamden that makes their own version of this sweet treat!

“What we are doing is we are taking those three magical ingredients, sap, wood, and time,” said Peter Laffin, the Brooksvale Program Specialist. “We put it all together, we boil it all up, and wait about ten hours, and make maple syrup."

This farm has been around since 1860 but has been producing maple syrup now for more than 20 years. 

”We are trying to teach the public the simple life,” said Laffin. “Where you don’t have to have computers or be fancy to have a great life.

The 560-acre park specializes in school field trips and has hosted thousands of kids over the years to learn about this tasty treat. 

“I think it’s kinda fun because we are learning about maple syrup and the sugar trees,” said fourth-grader, Wyatt Gaffney. “I think it’s really nice to know how we make it because I love maple syrup.”

”Each late winter to early spring the sap begins to rise in the trees, and we tap our trees,” said Brooksvale Park Ranger, Vincent Lavorgna. 

It's impressive to watch and interesting for the most curious of minds. 

“We do it mainly as an educational program,” said Lavorgna. “Every fourth grade class in Hamden public schools comes up and receives a 45-minute program."

And all that time and effort pays off in the taste. 

“We love our maple syrup here because we are a small craft operation,” said Lavorgna. “We feel that the syrup we make is top quality, and people seem to really enjoy it.” 

If you’re interested in seeing what this maple syrup is all about, the public can come out for maple sugaring day on March 7th.

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