As winter winds down, the longer days and rising temperatures make way for many families and friends to get out and enjoy the maple syrup harvest in Durham Region. Maple syrup festivals and events kick off in March and run through May.

Indigenous Peoples living in northeastern North America were the first to have produced maple syrup. Zhiiwaagamizigan is the Anishinaabe word for maple syrup, and its prized for both its medicinal properties and sweet taste. The earliest method of sap collection was done by cutting a v shape into the bark of a maple tree, then placing a wedge at the bottom of the cut and letting the sap flow into a bucket at the base of the tree. You can discover this original method of processing maple syrup by visiting Harlaine Maple Products during the Sunderland Maple Festival.Today, the collection process has changed, yet the result is that same sweet liquid gold.

Brooks Farms Maple Sugar Festival

Dates:Weekends and every day during March break(March 13 to 17). Tours at 10 and 11 a.m., noon, 1 and 2 p.m.

Location:Brooks Farms,122 Ashworth Road, Uxbridge.

Price:$12.99 plus HST (children under the age of two are free). Tickets can be purchased in advance online.

Pefferlaw Creek Farms Maple Syrup Festival

Dates: March 4 and 5, March 11 and 12, March 18 and 19, March 25 and 26, April 1 and 2, April 15 and 16, April 22 and 23.

Location: Pefferlaw Creek Farms,12300 Concession Road 6, Uxbridge.

Price: $5 per person or $20 per family. Booking ahead is not required.

Purple Woods Maple Syrup Festival

Dates:March 10 to 12, March 15 to 19, March 25 and 26, April 1 and 2.

Location:Purple Woods Conservation Area,38 Coates Road East, Oshawa.

Price:$8 per person (children under the age of two are free). Tickets can be purchased in advance online. On-site entrance fee is $11 per person and availability is limited.

Sunderland Maple Syrup Festival

Dates: April 1 and 2.

Location:River Street along historic downtown Sunderland.

Price: Free admission and parking.

Bowmanville Maple Fest

Date:May 6

Location:Historic downtown Bowmanville.

Price:Free admission and parking.

More information and tickets

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Bryen writes about local Durham community news, including regional events, municipality updates, entertainment, lifestyle, and the great outdoors. Email him directly if you want your business profiled or know a community member that deserves recognition -