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“Legend of Lonedell” now making maple syrup in Mountain Grove


Every year for 25 years, Allen Marrocco has enjoyed tapping maple trees and gathering sap to make homemade maple syrup.

Before relocating to Mountain Grove in the past few months, Marrocco was known as the “Legend of Lonedell” for his more than two decades of being involved with the hobby that led to yearly make-shift festivals, Maple Syrup Days, on his property. Those gatherings gave him, along with the support of his wife, Dot, a special opportunity to teach others about his family tradition with the hopes they may take the tradition back to their own families.

“My goal is to get the word out where I can teach people a family tradition,” Marrocco said. “It’s not really hard to do.”

The process starts with first location a maple tree then taking a half-inch drill and making a hole into the tree on a slight angle.

A person can then take a small half-inch pvc pipe, make a sharp end, cut 5.5” to 6” and tap it with a hammer into the tree. Sap will begin coming out of the pipe.

Marrocco cuts a hole on a water gallon jug and with the help of a tie wrap, sits the jug on the tap to college maple tree sap.

The tie wrap is to help keep the jugs on the trees when it is windy.

He said from January through March this year, that he will collect sap from his jugs at least two times a day.

Many area residents may notice some of his jugs on maple trees on 9th St. in Mountain Grove as he has gained permission of several neighbors to tap their trees to add to his sap supply. A supply that he uses to make a lot of maple syrup while not making any profit on the distribution.

“I don’t sell my syrup,” he said. “I try to get others to taste it and motivate them to want to make it,” he said.

(Read the rest of the story in the Feb. 23 issue of the Wright County Journal or purchase an Electronic Edition on this website.)

If interested in learning more about the process of making maple syrup, Marrocco can be contacted by email at ammarrocco@yahoo.com.