It’s here–2016! We will miss 2015 since it was a very busy year with all sorts of twists and turns. And as twists and turns go, some were better than others. Bests…camaraderie in the forest and sap house throughout syrup season; delicious sets of syrups prepared for Zoar Tapatree Co. and Beekman 1802; Paul & Jeri’s trip to Vermont; Paul’s week at Farm Camp; puppies; friends—old and new; the school house move; the beaver; and much expansion in the forest. Hardest…some injuries; the beaver; and community planning discord. Definitely more “plus” than “minus”–it was a year for growth on many levels—syrup placement, collection systems, future planning, and community discussion.

The year ahead? Onward and upward! We want to make significant progress in terms of exposing people to the concept of small-batch, single source, minimally processed syrups (need to come up with a shorter description first!). There is a world of maple magic in its multitude of flavors and applications. Not just for pancakes! With a low glycemic index, and chock full of nutrients absent in other sugars, maple syrup is a superior product and we plan to get that message out in 2016. Schoolhouse! This year will (shortly, we trust!) see the historic Flanders School roll down Zoar Road for a new lease on life. This modest schoolhouse exudes a wonderful aura of community past and present, and we’re very excited to see it refurbished and loved once again. Its new position will be nestled adjacent to a black walnut and maple forest—a lot of good juju!

So as the snow settles gently here on Zoar Road, we are preparing drop lines, boiling some of the holiday saps, and jumping into 2016 with appreciation for all the years that came before, and optimism for the year ahead. Cheers to always trying for a positive contribution and extending a helping hand! Happy New Year to one and all!

Deanna Nelson

Deanna Nelson

A barrister by day, Deanna won’t be giving up her day job, yet she enjoys nothing more genuinely than being in the woods or relishing the beauty of Zoar Road and surrounding environs with this tight-knit community and her three children.
Deanna Nelson

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