Maple Sugaring in NJ: 17 Places To Tap Into A Sweet Winter Treat


If you’re looking for a winter family-friendly activity that’s sweet, celebrates the outdoors, and is educational, why not try maple sugaring in NJ? Luckily, you don’t have to travel far—the Garden State has a bunch of places where you can learn about the process of identifying maple trees, collecting sap, making the syrup, as well as tasting the sweet sap (and bringing home the skills to tap your own trees). Scroll down to learn more about maple sugaring in NJ, and for more things to do this season, make sure you check out our guide to winter activities in NJ. (featured photo credit: istock/Marc Bruxelle)

(Note: It’s always best to check ahead for in-person events)

Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center
Now-March 3, select dates
At this event, you’ll identify and tap maple trees, collect sap, and make real maple syrup over a wood-fired evaporator. The syrup will be available for purchase while supplies last. 
Cost: $6 per person; Pre-registration is required for ages 6 and up.
Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center, 247 Southern Boulevard, Chatham, NJ 07928

Echo Hill
January 28, February 4, 18, March 9

Collect sap and start the sugaring process at Echo Hill in Hunterdon County. This program starts on January 28 with Maple Tree Tapping, then on February 4 and 18, they will run the Maple Sap Collection, and on March 9 is the Maple Sugar Living History Open House. 
Cost: prices vary per event
42 Lilac Drive, Flemington, NJ 08822 US

Tenafly Nature Center
January 28, February 4, 11, 18, 25 and March 3, 10, 17
Make a day of it at this popular nature center, where you can learn how to identify a maple tree, hear about the history of maple sugaring, and see how the technology has changed. 
Cost: Children under 2 are free, members $8, member family (up to 6) $60, non-members $12. Space is limited, and pre-registration is required.
313 Hudson Avenue, Tenafly, NJ 07670

The New Weis Center
January 30, February 10, 11, 17, 18, 24, 25 and March 2,3
Start off the season with a Tree Tapping and Foraged Tea event on January 30. Then, learn about the process, history, and ecology of maple sap and syrup. Start with a short hike, and they’ll you’ll see how to tap, collect, and evaporate the sap. Finish off the day with a syrup taste test.
Cost: prices vary per event
150 Snake Den Road, Ringwood, NJ 07456

Trailside Nature Center
The program is available from February-March
This program shows the journey of sap to syrup while you learn about the life cycle of the sugar maple tree. There will be a field walk and taste testing, too.
Cost: Prices vary, recommended for grades 2-12
452 New Providence Road, Mountainside, NJ 07092

Reeves-Reed Arboretum
February 2, March 3
Learn the steps in turning tree sap into delicious maple syrup with Tap That Tree! on February 2, and on March 3, it’s the annual all-day Maple Sugar Fest. For the festival, the whole family will enjoy spending the day outdoors, hiking the trails, and partaking in a Maple Sugaring Challenge—tap it and see how much syrup you can get from the tree. Don’t miss the hot chocolate, maple vendors, and more.
Cost: Registration is required; prices vary per event
165 Hobart Ave., Summit, NJ 07901

Environmental Education Center in Basking Ridge
February 3, 4, 10, 11, 17, 18, 24 and 25
Take part in a 60-minute outdoor program at the Sugar Shack, a half-mile hike from the Environmental Center. See how trees are tapped, view sap-collecting methods from the past and today, and see the boiling process used to make maple syrup.
Cost: $6 per student/senior or $7 per adult
190 Lord Stirling Road, Basking Ridge, NJ 07920

Howell Living History Farm
February 3, 17, 24
On this historic farm, you’ll watch farmers collect sap in the woods, make syrup in the sap house, and then taste it on top of whole wheat pancakes after visiting the farmhouse kitchen on the February 17 and 24 events. Take your newfound knowledge home to tap maple sugar in your backyard. 
70 Woodens Lane, Hopewell Township, NJ 08530

Poricy Park Nature Center
February 7 (sold out) and March 2 Scout program 
Drill holes, hammer in tappers, and hang buckets, all for a delicious, sweet treat as you learn the steps of making maple syrup at Poricy Park Nature Center. The walk down and back is approximately .5 miles. All children must be accompanied by an adult.
Cost: Register online through a community pass; prices vary per event
345 Oak Hill Road, Red Bank 07701

Lorrimer Sanctuary 
February 10, 16, 17
Learn about the art of sugar, try tasty treats, and tap into the world of maple sugaring when you see the process of making maple syrup, and learn about the trees that produce this golden treat. Don’t miss this chance to satisfy your sweet tooth and enjoy a fun-filled afternoon in nature. This program is for all ages. 
Cost: Tickets $8-$10
Ewing Avenue, Franklin Lakes, NJ 07417

Watershed Institute
February 10, 24
Give your kids a lesson on the history, folklore, and science of maple sugaring. Visit maple trees, find out how they are tapped using drills and spiles, and try a sample of sweet maple sugar. You will have an up-close view of the evaporation process and how sticky sap transforms into sweet maple syrup. 
Cost:  $10 per child. $10 per adult. For ages 5 and up. Adult attendance is required.
31 Titus Mill Road, Pennington, NJ 08534, US

Maple Sugaring at the Hermitage
February 17 
During this program, you’ll learn how to identify sugar maple trees and tap them. They will tap 15 trees, and you will receive a kit at the end—a great way to try maple sugaring in NJ in your backyard.
Cost: Families $35 
Franklin Turnpike, Ho-Ho-Kus, NJ 07423

Rancocas Nature Center
February 18
Take a self-guided hike with multiple interactive stations along the Rancocas trails, where you will learn about the sugar maple tree and the history of maple sugaring. At the end, watch a tapping demo and taste the rewards. A campfire will be burning to keep you warm and toasty, too.
Cost: members $9, $30 for a family of 5, non-members $11, and $40 for a family of 5
794 Rancocas Road, Westhampton, NJ 08060

Van Vleck Gardens
March 2
Take the family on a journey of discovery as they identify a sugar maple tree, learn the steps for turning sap into syrup, and visit a tapped sugar maple tree in the Van Vleck Gardens. There will be activity sheets, informative displays, and educators along the way.
Cost: $25-$35. Online registration is required.
21 Van Vleck Street, Montclair, 07042 

Schiff Natural Lands Trust & Schiff Nature Preserve Maple Sugaring Demonstration Day
March 2-3
This educational presentation will explain the history of maple sugaring, the seasonal life cycle of the sugar maple tree, and how syrup is made, starting with identifying a maple tree by tapping the tree. Watch a wood-fired evaporator at work and then sample the sweet stuff. If you’re up for it, there’s also a two-mile field walk to the working maple grove.
Cost: Free for Schiff members, and the non-member fee is $8 per person (ages 3 & up))
339 Pleasant Valley Road (Use 339 Schiff Dr in your GPS), Mendham, NJ 07945

Happy Day Farm
March date TBA
Did you know it takes about 80 gallons of sap to make a gallon of syrup? Take a tractor ride on the 130-acre farm with over 700 maple trees, where you’ll see the sugar bush and learn about the equipment needed to collect sap. Also, you’ll get to ID maple trees and even help in the tapping process.
Cost: $18 per person; children under 1 are free. Cash only
106 Iron Ore Road, Manalapan, NJ 07726

Lusscroft Farm
March 23
It’s the annual open house to try maple sugaring in NJ. See how the trees are tapped and how syrup is made. The farm will post more details closer to the event.
Cost: More information will be posted as soon as it is available.
50 Neilson Road, Wantage, NJ 07461

Are you going to try maple sugaring in NJ this winter? Let us know!

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About Author

Melanie Bodner has always had a love for writing, but now she has a new love…being a mom. Before having her kids, Melanie was no stranger to writing or working with children. She wrote for a local newspaper as a reporter and taught English and Dance in a public school. Now Melanie enjoys spending time with her kids, doing yoga, writing and decorating her home. Check out her Instagram @burlapbythebeach.