Get your fill of maple in Mansfield, Ohio
Malabar Farm, the former home of Pulitzer Prize-winning author Louis Bromfield, is gearing up for its annual Maple Syrup Festival, a family-friendly event in Mansfield, Ohio.
The festival is March 7, 8, 14 and 15, packed with free events and experiences. Sap is made into syrup at an authentic sugaring camp on the farm. Historic re-enactors will demonstrate how it was done in the early days, then walk visitors through those days to the present. There will be samples of the freshly made syrup to heighten the experience.
During the festival there will be live historical fiber art demonstrations and maple treats at the Malabar Farm Gift Shop — syrup, homemade maple walnut fudge, maple cotton candy, maple popcorn and more. Horse-drawn wagons will take guests around the park’s 300 acres. Other activities will be ongoing throughout the day, including walk-through tours of the Bromfield farmhouse.
Many may know Bromfield and his literary works, but what they may not know is that he was a dedicated conservationist and it was his dream to create a farm. On the property he built a 32-room home. He loved to share the country life with his family and friends. Two of his friends were married in the home, legendary actors Lauren Bacall and Humphrey Bogart.
Their wedding vows took place between the twin staircases that take visitors to the second floor of the home.
Bromfield’s influence on agriculture and his methods are still used today around the world.
There are scenic trails around the property, and the park hosts areas for horseback riding, fishing, cross-country skiing, and other events and things to do. The park has an education center that features more than 30 interactive exhibits and allows for those visiting to experience agriculture and gain a better understanding of environmental issues. There is also plenty of information on Bromfield’s conservation efforts.
Don’t leave the farm without a view from Mt. Jeez. Of course, at this time of year, the trees do not have their leaves, but a trip back in the fall will offer a spectacular array of colored leaves bursting across the Ohio hills.
The city of Mansfield and its surrounding areas offer visitors many unusual and fun adventures and experiences. Spend the night in a haunted former state prison where “The Shawshank Redemption” and other movies were filmed. The city is home to world-class motorsports and plenty of hiking, biking, golf and skiing. Complete visitor information is available at DestinationMansfield.com or by calling 800-642-8282.
For more information on Malabar Farm State Park visit malabarfarm.org.