48th Edition of the Perth Festival of the Maples

Time to Celebrate Lanark County ‘Gold’!
Join us at the
48th Edition of the Perth Festival of the Maples
Saturday, April 27, 2024

FOR RELEASE – April 2024

(Perth) – It’s the annual rite of spring. Maple syrup season is upon us once again as we prepare to celebrate our region’s most famous agricultural commodity – sweet, savoury maple syrup! Our local maple syrup producers are the stars of the show at the Perth Festival of the Maples being held Saturday, April 27th from 9am until 4pm in downtown Perth.

Ever since local businessman Vic Lemieux organized the first event close to 50 years ago, Perth has been the gathering place for this annual occasion to applaud the efforts of our local farmers and syrup producers in making Lanark County, the ‘Maple Syrup Capital of Ontario’.

This year’s Festival of the Maples is being organized and presented once again by the Perth & District Chamber of Commerce. New Chamber Executive Director Paloma Zander says, “This free annual event attracts between 15 to 20,000 guests who can’t wait to enjoy ‘taffy on ice’, maple butter, maple candies and the latest syrup straight from the area’s sugar bushes.”

Zander adds, “We’re extremely proud of the partnership the Chamber has with our local producers and members of the Lanark & District Maple Syrup Producers’ Association (LDMSPA). We routinely see well over a dozen producers join us every year, and some have been coming for decades. They’re extremely proud of their craft and can’t wait to share this year’s harvest.”

Perth Chamber President Brian Perkin says, “It’s been a stressful year for some of our local producers. The early warm weather and changeable temperatures kept them on their toes wondering when and how much the sap would run. In this region, most producers have had a good crop, but with any weather-dependent farming operation, outcomes can vary quite a bit. Now, it’s time for them to shine and be rewarded for their labours.”

Producers will have a chance to enter their syrup and other goods for judging in the festival’s annual syrup competition run by LDMSPA. Awards will be handed out on the festival’s main stage on Herriot Street during the opening ceremonies at 11am on festival day.

The festival kicks off with a pancake breakfast at the Perth Legion from 8:30am to 10:30am, plus the annual Classic & Antique Car Show on display on Herriot Street. Gore Street and Foster Street downtown will be lined with a wide array of artisan and food vendors, farm products, retail, community and charity exhibitors. Booth registration has been busy, with over 160 vendors booked to participate.

On the Festival’s main stage, located at Herriot at Gore Streets, live entertainment will continue throughout the day. This year’s artists include CR5 Bluegrass, The Receivers, Crooked Creek, The Valley Mountain Band, Three 2 Go, Eric Uren and Meghan Balogh, along with the Kings of Swingers.

The Maplefest ‘Sap Tapping’ and ‘Wood Cookie Challenge’ returns to the main stage at 12:30pm when 2-person teams test their skills by drilling spile holes for sap buckets and wielding old-time band saws to clock the fastest log-sawing times.

Families and kids will be able to join in a variety of fun activities at the Children’s Playpark in the Tay Basin including bouncy rides, a rock-climbing wall and zip-line run by Ry-J’s Climbing Adventures, along with pony rides and a petting zoo, with a rest area, Korny’s Klowns and child activiies by the Lanark Highlands Youth Centre planned for the Crystal Palace.

Perkin states, “We’d like to thank our Chamber members and other area businesses for stepping up once again this year to sponsor just about every aspect of this event so it remains a free festival. Their support is greatly appreciated.”

The Chamber offers free parking and a shuttle courtesy of Martin’s Bus Service from the lot at the Perth Campus of Algonquin College on Craig Street. The shuttle drop-off and return pick-up spot is at Craig and Gore Street.

For more information, visit the festival website at: festivalofthemaples.com

For more information please contact:
Paloma Zander, Chamber Executive Director
Brian Perkin, Festival Chair
Chamber Office Phone: 613-267-3200
Email: manager@perthchamber.com