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Thurman gears up for Maple Weekends

For now, Randy Galusha is making final preparations to his equipment before the spring weather arrives.

"Then it's time to wait for Mother Nature to cooperate," he said.

The highlight of the season is the Annual Maple Sugar Party - better known as the Jack Wax Party - which starts at 4 p.m. Saturday, March 12 at the Thurman Town Hall, 311 Athol Road in Athol. For more than 50 years, this event has helped raise money for the American Cancer Society, and this is the social event of the season for the town of Thurman, with an all-you-can eat buffet and entertainment by local musicians. And don't forget the jack wax. Jack wax is also known as sugar on snow or maple on snow. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for kids 6-11 and free for kids 5 and under.

"Jack wax is maple syrup boiled to a certain temperature, and it is poured on snow," said Rebecca Hitchcock, a town of Thurman councilwoman who has been helping organize the Annual Maple Sugar Party.

Four venues offer plenty of activities during Thurman Maple Days on March 12 and 13. People can see high-tech and traditional wood-fired evaporators in action, plus tapping and boiling demonstrations, at three sugarhouses, which will open their doors to the public with free tours and maple tasting. Plus, Martin's Lumber (280 Valley Road) will give demonstrations of its sawmill operations from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.

But the proof is in the eating. Visitors can partake in a traditional pancake breakfast at 9 a.m. March 12 at Valley Road Maple.

Learn more about the Thurman Maple Days online at www.thurman-ny.com and the New York Maple Weekends at www.mapleweekend.com.

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