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N1959 Kroncke Road
Poynette, WI 53955

Take Hwy 51 North from Madison, go straight onto Hwy 22, turn east (right) onto Hwy 60 almost immediately. Drive 2 miles and go North (left) onto Kroncke Road. We're just over a mile on the left-hand side.

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(608) 635-4780

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Thursday, July 9, 2009

NEW Product at Lapacek’s Orchard this Fall – Hedmark’s Maple Syrup from Fence, WI

009I’m not kidding! We’re going to have our very own, Wisconsin-made Maple Syrup for sale at the orchard this fall.

We went to my parent’s cottage in Fence, WI, this year over the Fourth of July and Jared and I had the pleasure of meeting Fred Hedmark. He lives just down the lane from my parent’s cottage and has quite the maple syrup operation going on. After chatting with him for awhile and 013seeing how things work we decided this would be a great opportunity for the orchard. I have had so many people come in and ask if we have maple syrup…now we do!

I want to share with you some information from the Hedmark’s brochure:

Hedmark’s Maple Ridge History

Hedmark’s Maple Ridge is nearly a century old family hobby located in the Town of Fence, Florence County. Fred and Bonnie Hedmark are the third generation to make maple syrup.

It all started in 1917 when Fred and Stephanie Hedmark grew weary of the city life in Chicago. They traded two lakeside apartment buildings for 240 acres in the Town of Fence, sight unseen. They moved to the Northwoods with their toddler son, Edward, and lived in a tent taht summer until the log cabin was built. In 1918, Stephanie moved back to Chicago to give birth to their second son, Milan. They made maple syrup for their own consumption and bartered the rest for other necessities while raising 5 children.

During World War 2, Milan was stationed in Chicago, where he met Vita. In 1945, they were married, bought a farm and moved back to Fence.

In 1958 Mila and Vita purchased a 3’ x 12’ evaporator, put up a modest building, put out 700 taps and started producing maple syrup commercially with their three sons; Bob, Mike (Milan) and Fred. Through the years they increased the number of taps to as high as 1600 taps, using buckets and bags. The unique aspect was Milan always used a team of horses to gather the sap.

007In 1995, Milan urged his youngest son, Fred, to try installing tubing on his property close to the family farm. The property has a very steep ridge running north-south, making it a perfect setup for gravity tubing, thus the name Hedmark’s Maple Ridge. In 1996 Fred and Bonnie installed 500 taps and went into partnership with Milan. 1996 was the last yar of using the horses for gathering the sap, 006because in 1997 they installed another 400+ taps for a total of 900+taps of tubing. In 1998, Milan turned the operation over to Fred and Bonnie.

011In the fall of 2000, Fred built a new sap house and installed a 4’ x 18’ evaporator, the official start of the third generation.

Vacuum was added to the tubing during the 2009 season which increased the product 50% over the gravity system.

The first weekend in April, Hedmark’s hosts an annual open house serving breakfast with Bonnie’s made from scratch buttermilk pancakes and pure maple syrup. (We are going to try to attend in 2010)

014In October 2008, Hedmark’s Maple Ridge was named 2008 – 2009 Wisconsin Maple Syrup Producer of the Year. This is the ultimate honor to have bestowed on any Wisconsin Maple Syrup Producer.

Maple Syrup

Pure maple syrup is made from the sap of the sugar maple trees, harvested in the late winter and early spring.


It takes approximately 40 gallons of sap to make one gallon of maple syrups. While the Native Americans used to cook the sap by placing hot rocks in birch bark kettles, at Hedmark’s Maple Ridge a 4’x18’ wood-fired evaporator boils down the sap. Using the plentiful firewood in the area lessons the dependence on foreign energy sources.

If you haven’t tasted the natural sweetness direct from the maple tree, try some real maple syrup made right here in Wisconsin.

Hedmark’s Maple Ridge

Pure Maple Syrup

Maple Equipment

Fred and Bonnie Hedmark

1268 Carlson Road

Florence, WI 54121

(715) 336-2214


I am super excited to offer you this blue ribbon maple syrup at the orchard the fall!


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