Maple syrup season returns to Fulton's Pancake House and Sugar Shack
OTTAWA -- Maple syrup season is upon us and many sugar shacks are hoping to tap into a better year of business.
Fulton's Pancake House & Sugar Shack are ready to welcome visitors back to their 400-acre maple syrup farm in Pakenham, Ont.
2020 wasn't so sweet for their business. COVID closed the popular spot last March, which relies heavily on sales from their pancake breakfast. Owner Shirley Fulton-Deugo says visitors account for nearly 80 per cent of their revenue.
"This has been a really difficult year financially," says Fulton-Deugo. "And just trying to change our business to have a brand new business model that we've never had before."
The restaurant was unable to serve their popular pancake feast this year, so Fulton-Deugo transformed it into a shop that sells everything maple.
"We just have wonderful food in our store, we're very proud of how we sourced our products," Fulton-Deugo says. "All of the pure maple products, the butter, the maple sugar, candies, the granulated sugar, our BBQ sauce, our mustard, our granolas, our pancake mix, our spices."
There are hundreds of items to choose from. There is coffee, as well as health products. Plus the items that they do not make come from local farmers and artists in Ontario.
Fulton-Deugo says it's important to help other small businesses.
Visitors to the sugar shack are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, head in to the shop to buy some handmade grab-and-go items, such as cookies and butter cups, then head out into the forest to enjoy the many kilometres of walking trails.
Families will also have the opportunity to book private tours on the Heritage Trail and on some weekends, public tours will be available as well.
Sticky treats like taffy on ice and maple cotton candy will be available to buy along with beverages.
And if you're looking to bring the sugar shack experience home Fulton's has that covered. They have created breakfast bundles, which have everything you need including pancake mix, coffee, tea, maple syrup and treats. You can also add on maple sausage and their famous beans.
There are also kits for birding, to tap your own tree and make your own maple syrup and curbside pickup is available.
Fulton-Deugo says so far the season looks promising and that Mother Nature doesn't know anything about COVID, the trees are happy and ready to produce.