27 Feb 2023

40 Sweet Years of Maine Maple Sunday®

Real Maine / About Us / Blog / Seasons / Spring / 40 Sweet Years of Maine Maple Sunday®

Hundreds of sugarhouses to open their doors March 25 and 26

It is a well-known rite of spring and tradition for many Maine families – making the trip to sugarhouses for Maine Maple Sunday®. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the event, the first of its kind in the nation.

The 2023 edition of Maine Maple Sunday® weekend will be held March 25 and 26. Some sugarhouses will be open both days, while others may be open for one day.

Visitors can expect maple syrup samples and syrup-making demonstrations at more than 100 sugarhouses statewide. Other Maine Maple Sunday® sites offer games, activities, treats, tours, music, and more. Special memorabilia and products are planned for the 40th anniversary.

“Statewide, (producers) are going to step up their game,” Lyle Merrifield, president of the Maine Maple Producers Association, said of this year’s Maine Maple Sunday® and its 40th anniversary milestone.

Jason Lilley, an assistant professor and maple industry educator for the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, said the number of people attending Maine Maple Sunday® and participating sugarhouses have increased, the distance attendees travel has expanded, and technology has evolved over the past 40 years, but the spirit of the event, and maple syrup production, remains what it was in 1983 and hundreds of years before.

“The process, at its core, of collecting a sustainable amount of sap from well-taken-care-of trees, and boiling it down to a high quality, and sweet smelling and tasting, finished product, has remained the same,” Lilley said.

Merrifield said the state’s syrup producers feel “fortunate” for the success of Maine Maple Sunday® over the years. He said sugarhouses of all sizes participate and attendees know to mark the fourth Sunday in March on their calendar every year.

Tips For A Successful Visit:

  • Each site is different – Review schedules and hours of operation; complimentary, or ticketed, activities; etc.
  • Dress for the weather and the season – changing temperatures, melting or accumulating spring snow, and mud puddles are common. 
  • Before you head out – Check for schedule changes. Use local listings, webpages, social media, or call the business.

To find participating sugarhouses, go to the Events page on the Maine Maple Producers Association website at mainemapleproducers.com, or go to the Southern Maine Sugarmakers Association website at smmsa.org.

Enjoy Pure Maine Maple Syrup Year-Round!

There are many ways and places to buy pure Maine maple syrup and maple products throughout the year. Real Maine members are a good place to start your search – go to www.realmaine.com. You can find Maine maple products at sugarhouses, farmstands, local grocery stores, and through Maine-based online retailers.