MDC offers free maple sugaring programs Feb. 5 in Kansas City

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Kansas City, Mo. – Trees are still in winter’s grip in February, but it takes just a few warm days during the month to make tree sap flow in anticipation of spring. That sap can be collected and turned into sweet syrup, especially maple syrup. The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) will offer free maple sugaring programs from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and from 12:30 to 2 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 5, at the Anita B. Gorman Discovery Center in Kansas City. The center will also host a virtual maple sugaring class on from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 15.

When you see a bucket hanging on a tree trunk in late winter, someone has tapped the tree to gather sap for syrup. Hard maples, also called sugar maples, are favored because their sap has a higher sugar content than other species, thus it takes less sap to make syrup. Other tree species can also be tapped. They have differing flavors, but they also require more gallons of sap to be boiled into a quart of syrup. Yet, some people do tap a variety of trees to make syrup.

MDC’s Gorman Discovery Center Sap to Syrup classes are for participants ages 8 and older. This course will cover all the equipment and techniques needed to gather sap and boil it into syrup. A portion of class time will be outdoors, so participants should dress for the weather. COVID-19 safety precautions will be followed. Registration is required. Visit these links to register: 10 to 11:30 a.m.,, and 12:30 to 2 p.m.,

A virtual Sap to Syrup will also by offered from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 15, by Steve Jacobsen, MDC assistant manager at the Discovery Center. This program will cover tree selection, equipment, and techniques for turning sap into syrup. The program is also open to participants ages 8 and older. Registration is required. To register, visit

For more information about the Gorman Discovery Center, visit