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More accessible Maple Museum to hold grand opening

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CROGHAN — A more accessible American Maple Museum will hold its grand opening today with a variety of events.

“While it was a challenging year for the maple syrup industry, the syrup is exceptionally sweet this year,” Donald M. Moser, president of the museum’s board of directors, said in a release. “We hope that everyone will take advantage of this day to come to the museum and celebrate the beginning of another season with us.”

Festivities begin at the Main Street museum with a pancake breakfast from 6:30 to 9:30 a.m., followed by opening ceremonies at 10:15 a.m.

That ceremony will include the induction of Dave Chapeskie, Spencerville, Ontario, and Michael A. Girard, Simsbury, Conn., into the Maple Hall of Fame, along with the maple princess and queen pageant.

A chicken and pork barbecue dinner will be held from noon to 3 p.m., with takeouts available starting at 11:30 a.m.

The museum and its gift shop — featuring maple syrup along with such value-added products as maple chipotle hot sauce and maple barbecue sauce — will be open all day for tours. There will be entertainment all morning, while a craft fair will run throughout the day.

One new feature at the museum is a ramp in front of the two-story building.

The ramp, part of a three-year accessibility and efficiency upgrade project, was erected last fall to provide handicapped accessibility to the main floor, which includes the gift shop, dining hall, restrooms and displays. The project, handled by Bruce Widrick Construction with volunteer assistance, was funded mostly with state Main Street grant money administered through Snow Belt Housing Co. Inc.

“Every year the museum gets bigger and better,” Mr. Moser said.

The American Maple Museum was founded in Beaver Falls in 1977 to showcase the history and evolution of the maple syrup industry. It was moved to its current location, formerly Father Leo Memorial School, in 1980 when the building was donated to museum directors by Robert and Florence Lamb.

The museum is open from Memorial Day through early September.

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