Champlain Professor to Speak on Meaning of Maple

Michael Lange

MONKTON - Maple is a powerful component to Vermont identity, and the Monkton Museum and Historical Society will host a presentation that explores this topic.

Champlain College Professor Michael Lange will give a talk titled "The Many Meanings of Maple" on Monday, Aug. 15, at 7 p.m. at the Monkton Fire Station. In the presentation, Lange will examine the many meanings of maple sugaring.

Maple is enormously important to Vermont's economy, ecology, and heritage, and the presentation will cover sugaring based on over five years of research among sugarmakers all around the state to learn from them what sugaring really means to Vermont.

Rather than the practical aspects of sugaring, such as how to tap a tree or how an evaporator works, Lange's talk will focus on how and why maple has become so important to Vermont's identity, and how and why it helps us shape who we are as Vermonters.

Lange is a professor of anthropology and folklore and has written several academic works about cultural identity. His recent work draws on research with sugarmakers from across Vermont and includes "Foodie Influence on the Culinary Meanings of Maple Syrup" and "Sweet Bedfellows: Continuity, Change and Terroir in Maple Syrup." His most recent book, "Meanings of Maple," will hit the shelves next year.

The event, sponsored by the Vermont Humanities Council with a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, is free and open to the public. The event will also be accessible to people with disabilities. Maple refreshments will follow the presentation. The Monkton Fire Station can be found at 3747 State's Prison Hollow Road.


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Founded in 1878, Champlain College is a small, not-for-profit, private college in Burlington, Vermont, with additional campuses in Montreal, Canada, and Dublin, Ireland. Champlain offers a traditional undergraduate experience from its beautiful campus overlooking Lake Champlain and over 90 residential undergraduate and online undergraduate and graduate degree programs and certificates. Champlain's distinctive career-driven approach to higher education embodies the notion that true learning occurs when information and experience come together to create knowledge. Champlain College is included in the Princeton Review's The Best 384 Colleges: 2019 Edition. For the fourth year in a row, Champlain was named a "Most Innovative School" in the North by U.S. News & World Report's 2019 "America's Best Colleges,” and a “Best Value School” and is ranked in the top 100 “Regional Universities of the North” and in the top 25 for “Best Undergraduate Teaching.” Champlain is also featured in the Fiske Guide to Colleges for 2019 as one of the "best and most interesting schools" in the United States, Canada and Great Britain and is a 2019 College of Distinction. For more information, visit champlain.edu.