Hidden stone treasures may appear as snow vanishes for April 7 Maple Syrup Festival

Colorful rock creations –some 250 in all–were placed by Pelican Rapids students along the trails of Maplewood State Park.
As the snow melts, the rocks will appear–probably just in time for the April 7 Maplewood-Vergas Maple Syrup Festival.
Pelican students placing hand painted rocks last fall along Maplewood State Park trails–some of which may be discovered during the April 7 Maple Syrup Demonstration Day.

“Maplewood Rocks!”

That’s the conclusion of students in the Pelican Rapids schools–and they’ve placed hidden treasure at the park as a stone-cold statement.

In the fall of 2017, about 250 hand-painted rocks were placed along trails in Maplewood State Park. These rocks, created by 3-8 grade students, have an Instagram code on back for people to take pictures of the rocks and upload to the school Instagram page.

They can then re-hide them or take them with them to places elsewhere.

“The snow is starting to melt. The rocks are reappearing after a long winter. Will you find one?” noted Pelican Rapids school art teacher Heidi Smith. “Let us know our rock’s journey.”

The public is likely to get a first glimpse of the Pelican student rocks April 7, the first big public event of the spring-summer season at Maplewood. Presumably, the snow cover will be mostly gone when the park hosts its maple syrup demonstrations as part of the Vergas and Maplewood festival.

Maplewood syrup demos set during festival April 7

Maplewood hosts on-going demonstrations from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 7, where participants learn about the process from tapping the trees and collecting the sap to the boiling of sap into pure maple syrup. All events are held at the Trail Center and new “Sugar Shack” that was completed in 2017.

Vergas syrup fest events include pancake feed, bluegrass April 7

Meanwhile, the Vergas Maple Syrup Festival is from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Featured: Pancake Feed, Maple Syrup demonstrations, Blacksmith Demo, Maple Medallion Hunt, 5K Run/Walk, Maple Leaf Hunt, and bluegrass music by the Buffalo River Ramblers. Proceeds will benefit improvements at the Vergas Event Center.

The Pelican students and teacher Smith thought it would be a great day to get people out walking, and keep their eyes open for the colorful creations while they hike and enjoy the beauties at Maplewood State Park.

“Help us make kindness rock!” said Smith, encouraging folks to find and share their discoveries at Maplewood.