It’s maple time! Pandemic restrictions will alter our traditional maple experiences again this year but many sugar bushes and maple syrup producers have been working hard to welcome families to enjoy outdoor visits and maple bites during maple season.
While it’s important to check with each location before planning your visit to follow their Covid specific rules (especially as some will depend on the City’s current open status), many of our local sugar bushes are switching to a curbside pick-up/take-out option for their food. A few still have hiking trails and outdoor areas open to visitors, while others are only welcoming visitors to order maple products and food to go.
Here are some local sugar bushes who are currently open for maple season:
A great choice for families in the east end, Proulx Farm is just 10 minutes east of Orleans. This year, tickets are required for their weekend visits (with a limited number sold). You’ll still be able to enjoy a pancake breakfast and maple taffy, then spend time walking around the farm to see the animals in the petting zoo, racing down their giant slide or strolling their trails. Visit the website for hours and reservation details.
Not up for the commute out of town to commune with nature? The Vanier MuseoPark is an urban sugar shack in the city and is just 10 minutes from downtown Ottawa. This year, they’re taking their annual Sugar Festival virtual (as well as in person) with various events taking place in March and April.
Located about a half hour south of the Ottawa core, Stanley’s is a can’t-miss for their scrumptious food and beautiful outdoor space. They have updated their activities this year and now their menu is a ‘walk around’ menu to enjoy outside. You can still visit the animals and treat yourself to maple taffy. These activities are only available on weekends.
We love Parc Omega’ unique sugar shack. As you drive through Parc Omega to see the animals and feed them, make a stop along the way at the sugar shack for some maple taffy on snow (sold in individual cups to grab and go). Enjoy the skating rink when conditions allow (bring your own skates and helmets!) or bring your snowshoes to walk their beautiful trails.
Temple’s Sugar Bush is a smaller farm—you won’t find the bells and whistles of other sugar shacks here. What you will find, however, is all the charm, plus delicious food from the restaurant. Although indoor dining is currently closed, Temple’s is offering curbside take out on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Order in advance by contacting them. You’ll find more information on their website.
Like other sugar bushes, Fulton’s has adapted and will welcome visitors to their stunning trails (to hike, snowshoe or ski), their sledding hills for the kids to enjoy, and of course their maple menu. While the restaurant won’t be open for indoor dining, grab-and-go is available. Bring your own chairs to enjoy your bites outside together. Their gift shop is a treasure trove of unique maple-themed products so you can leave with even more maple items.
Featuring giant pancakes, Wheelers is a great place to eat. They are currently open Thursdays through Sundays for indoor dining by reservation only. After, play on the swings, take a stroller-friendly walk in the woods and visit the Maple Heritage Museum. Maple products are available for curbside pick up seven days a week.