Maple sugaring to return to Coggeshall Farm

Visitors are invited as sap and cider flow at Bristol living museum


The chill in the air can only mean one thing at Coggeshall: Maple sugaring season is about to start.

Visitors are invited to bundle up and join Coggeshall staff as they showcase historic methods of maple sugaring. After visitors learn how to tap trees, gather sap and process it in Coggeshall’s maple sugaring camp, they can warm up by the hearth and enjoy hot cider and authentic johnnycakes. All the while, visitors can learn about how this centuries-old task ties into a variety of topics, from abolition to international shipping.

“This is a chance to get your hands dirty and learn how people used to make maple sugar at the birth of our nation,” Interim Executive Director Casey Duckett said in a release. “Visitors can help tap trees, collect sap, cut and collect firewood, and learn about the routine of an 18th-century sugar camp.”

Maple sugaring is a decade-long tradition at Coggeshall and is their first major event of the year. The museum expects a large turnout of guests looking for a taste of this New England experience. In addition to demonstrations, the Coggeshall Museum Store will be selling honey from the hives on their property and maple syrup made with sap tapped from the maple trees along Colt Drive.

A series of maple sugaring events begins Feb. 21, running through Feb. 26. The series resumes March 4-5, 11-12, and 18-19. Daily public hours are 10 a.m.-4 pm.

This event is included in normal admission prices and is free for Coggeshall Members. Memberships can be bought online or at the museum. The living history farm is located at 1 Colt Drive, Bristol, RI off Poppasquash Road, and adjacent to Colt State Park. For more information, visit


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A lifelong Portsmouth resident, Jim graduated from Portsmouth High School in 1982 and earned a journalism degree from the University of Rhode Island in 1986. He's worked two different stints at East Bay Newspapers, for a total of 18 years with the company so far. When not running all over town bringing you the news from Portsmouth, Jim listens to lots and lots and lots of music, watches obscure silent films from the '20s and usually has three books going at once. He also loves to cook crazy New Orleans dishes for his wife of 25 years, Michelle, and their two sons, Jake and Max.