Mother Earth New Fair, Seven Springs, PA

Last week we were privileged to win some tickets to the Mother Earth News Fair in Seven Springs, Pennsylvania. We missed the ones they held on the West coast as we were already traveling.
We were amazed at some of the workshops that they were offering ... as well as some of the speakers, including Ed Begley, Jr and Joel Salatin. Some really exciting workshops that we attended were:

Baking healthy bread in 5 minutes a day
Powering your homestead with Renewable Energy
DIY Residential Solar for $3 Per Watt
Fall and Winter Gardening: eat fresh from your garden all winter, as well as a few others. The boys enjoyed some of their own classes, directed to the kids attending, as well.

We have already started with the bread - yum! And who knew how simple (and little space) it would take to do this on a daily basis! One thing that truly surprised me, was how much maintenance there was with the renewable energy systems. I don't have any idea why I thought it, but I really did think that it was more of a "plug and play" deal. Set it up and it will run on it's own. Nope, no ma'am, that's not how it works. I'm re-thinking adding something that will add more maintenance to start a new farm up again. Needs some more thought and research.

But really, one of the most amazing things we experiences with the Fair, was not actually even at the fair. We were out driving around the back country roads of the area, turned down this one road and wham! There we were, in a small forest of Sugar Maple trees. And there are tap lines leading into larger lines, leading back to the main building where it is all processed. Why do I even mention this little side trip? Well, two reasons actually. We were just studying maple trees (in addition to many other trees) and learning about them in science. Also, as it turns out, they were exhibitors at the Fair. We stopped by to visit during a lull and find out a little more about how it all happens. We also got to sample some of their absolutely amazing, award winning maple treats. Yes, we had to bring home some REAL maple syrup, but we also couldn't leave without their maple cream, maple candy and as a little treat for the boys behaving well, they got some maple cotton candy while we were there.
Tapping the trees for maple syrup

Photo by Mike Bowler

I cannot tell you enough how much we are enjoying the maple cream on pancakes, french toast and - by suggestion - even salmon! Crazy yummy stuff. See them at: Paul Bunyans Maple Syrup. No we aren't getting anything from them, but we just really wanted to share with you, one of those truly amazing, family farms that we've met along the way. Yum!

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