Published on March 16, 2007
Shangzhu Wang, of China, tries some maple syrup this past weekend at the Hadley Sugar Shack.
March was roaring like a lion last week, trying to make up for a sheepish winter, all the better backdrop for an excursion to the Smith and Mount Holyoke colleges spring bulb shows and breakfast at a maple sugar house.
The tulips, hyacinths, daffodils and other spring blossoming bulbs were delightful and their fragrance intoxicating. The shows, open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. through March 18 at the Lyman Conservatory at Smith and Talcott Greenhouse at Mount Holyoke, are annual crowd pleasers - as are the sugar houses.
Joe Boisvert was minding the sap boiling Saturday, but it wasn't mist from sap rising into the air. He was boiling water to show how the process works, because the sap hadn't been running in the last few days.
The back room isn't only popular for the boiling demonstration: There is also a pitcher of fresh maple syrup that visitors can pour into small paper tasting cups. Shangzhu Wang, a University of Massachusetts graduate student in computer science from China, and Mandy Cheung, a graduate student of education from Hong Kong, were sipping syrup on Saturday.