Mountain State Maple Days 2022…All Things Ooey-Gooey & Amber
As a kid growing up in West Virginia one of my favorite times of year was winter. When the snow was falling my friends and I would pray for school cancellations and days filled with sleigh riding, fort building, and epic snowball battles of Viking-like proportions. Those days were always book-ended with two tasty treats that for me, are synonymous with winter. The day always ended with mom’s homemade hot chocolate (nothing poured from a foil envelope, thank you). It was the perfect way to warm up after a long day out in the cold. That’s how the day ended. But the day began with a stack of pancakes and sweet maple syrup; a breakfast we seldom had time for on a typical school day. All those delicious carbs and sugar kept me fueled for the day — an opinion I’m sure would trigger a raised eyebrow from my cardiologist today.
Although I don’t make pancakes and maple syrup a regular part of my diet these days, there are a couple of times a year when I will indulge in my favorite childhood breakfast — and that time has come. Pocahontas County is once again celebrating Mountain State Maple Days with two maple festival days, Saturday, February 19 and Saturday, March 19, two days set aside to celebrate the ooey-gooey, golden treat of West Virginia maple syrup. And with five working sugar camps, live entertainment, lodging specials, and maple-themed dining experiences county-wide, you’re sure to find plenty of fun and more than enough maple syrup for even the biggest, sweet tooth out there. So here’s the rundown on what to see, smell, taste, and do as we go crazy for all things maple in Nature’s Mountain Playground.
In no particular order, let’s take a look at where the maple syrup is flowing in Pocahontas County. Frostmore Farm, located south of Dunmore and north of Frost on Route 92, will be holding a maple open house on February 19, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Samples and a variety of maple treats will be available. If you can’t make the trip in February, you can always take advantage of their year-round roadside stand but be sure not to miss the maple syrup festival on March 19; that’s when Frostmore Farm features their delicious maple cinnamon rolls — a real treat. Check out all the details on Frostmore Farm’s Facebook page.
North of Frostmore Farms, near Green Bank just off route 92, you’ll find Fort Warwick Farm. A historic Revolutionary War site with active digs during the summer, Fort Warwick also produces West Virginia maple syrup the old school way as handed down over generations. Tours are free and plenty of maple product samples are available. Visit Fort Warwick Farm’s website for more information.
Yew Mountain Center, located south of Hillsboro just off Route 219 on Lobelia Road, offers not only sugar bush tours and delicious maple delights but also features kids’ educational activities. Bring the whole family out for a sweet treat and, who knows, mom and dad might learn a thing or two along with the kids. For further directions and more details, visit the Yew Mountain Center’s website.
With two locations north of Hillsboro just off Route 219, Hillsboro Maple Works will feature an open house at each site for Mountain State Maple Days 2022, alternating between dates. February 19, the open house will be held at their sugar house off Rose Road and Kelly Jones Drive, while the March 19 open house will be at the sugar bush off Seebert Road toward the low water bridge. Both sites will feature demonstrations and offer products for sample and sale. To confirm locations and get further directions, visit the Hillsboro Maple Works’ website.
New this year to Maple Days 2022 is Saffron Flats Farms & Handmade West Virginia. Join them on February 19, for demonstrations of old and new tapping methods, processing sap, and candy making. Also, stop by on February 20 for a pancake breakfast. Saffron Flats Farms is located one mile south of Droop Mountain Battlefield State Park on Route 219. For more information visit Saffron Flats Farms’ Facebook page and Handmade West Virginia’s Facebook page.
Dining and Lodging Specials
After a day of visiting sugar camps and sampling maple treats why not take that sweet tooth up a notch or two with a stop at any number of eateries throughout the county celebrating maple weekend, West Virginia style. Here’s a quick look at dining options and even a couple of lodging specials in case you’re too full to make the drive home or just want to stay an extra day with us.
Handmade West Virginia on Route 219 and Droop Mountain, will host a pancake brunch on Sunday, February 20, from 10 a.m. to noon, featuring Saffron Flats Farm maple syrup.
The Dirtbean Café in Marlinton will be featuring breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert, all centered around Frostmore Farm maple syrup. Menu selections range from pancakes, Mahi maple miso tacos, to orange maple-glazed ham and maple pecan pear crisp, plus a few other treats. Reservations are requested. You can reach the Dirtbean Café at 304-799-4038.
The Last Run Restaurant in Cass has you covered for the day with breakfast specials from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and lunch specials from noon to 8 p.m. along with plenty of sweet treats in between. Stop by for their all-you-can-eat pancakes or grab a maple mustard chicken club sandwich for lunch. And definitely don’t forget the maple milkshake or any number of their maple treats from the bakery.
Locust Hill Restaurant and Pub in Marlinton will be serving maple-apple upside-down cake featuring Hillsboro Works maple syrup. Locust Hill is also offering a Maple Days lodging special at their inn. Book two nights with them and your second night is half off (excludes cabin bookings). Give them a call for all the details at 304-799-5471.
Station 2 Restaurant in Durbin will be featuring their famous all-you-can-eat, all-day maple breakfast with your choice of pancakes or buckwheat cakes. And once you’ve filled up on all those pancakes, check with them about their lodging specials for one-night stays with either a one or two-bed option. Give them a call at 304-456-4509 for further details.
Mountain State Cakes Bakery in Dunmore, at the intersection of Route 28 and 92, will be open both Maple Days Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. With tempting treats of maple donuts, maple fudge, and maple cupcakes to choose from, you’re sure to find at least one treat to satisfy that sweet tooth. And who says you can’t stock up on a few treats to bring home (if they last that long).
Pocahontas County Farmer’s Market will host a pancake breakfast featuring Cassell’s Sugar Shack maple syrup at Fort Warwick Farm beginning at 9 a.m. Be sure to mark your calendar for this one as it is only scheduled for March 19.
The Depot Café in Hillsboro rounds out our list of delicious maple specials for this year’s Maple Days West Virginia festival. Slated for March 19 only, the Depot Café will be offering their tasty maple cream-filled donuts from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Be sure to stop by for this classic and tempting indulgence.
One last note since we’ve touched on a few lodging specials for Maple Days, we don’t want to forget to mention the Yew Mountain Center in Droop. To help entice you to stay for the celebration of all things maple, they’ll be offering a 20 percent discount on Friday and Saturday stays during the festivities. Give them a call for all the details at 304-653-4079.
If sugar camp tours, maple dining treats, and lodging specials aren’t enough for you, we’ve got one other offering to sweeten our Maple Days deal. How about topping off your Maple Days celebration with a little live entertainment? This year the Pocahontas County Opera House on Third Avenue in Marlinton, is joining in on the fun and presenting an evening of live music on both nights of the maple festival. Saturday, February 19, at 7:30 p.m., the opera house will present Opry Night. An evening of traditional bluegrass music with a few twists thrown in just for fun. This performance will feature music from Dave Bing, Homer Hunter, and Richard Hefner and promises to be a great, season kick-off for the Opera House.
The second Maple Days performance presented by the Opera House, on March 19, at 7:30 p.m., is a Celtic music group by the name of Poisoned Dwarf (it’s okay, I don’t imagine anyone was actually poisoned in the naming of this group). Traditional Irish and Scottish music on acoustic instruments will be on tap for the evening and this show will undoubtedly be a unique experience you won’t want to miss. Tickets for both shows can be purchased in advance or at the door, if available. Visit the Pocahontas Opera House’s website for more details and ticket buying options.
Well, that’s just about everything we can think to pack into Mountain State Maple Days 2022. Two days to choose from and each filled with ooey-gooey maple goodness, along with plenty of food, fun, overnight stays, and entertainment. So be sure to set aside either date, or both, and come join us in Nature’s Mountain Playground as we celebrate that delicious golden treat, we all love so much.