The Wilds Cooperative of Pennsylvania
Creative Makers Exhibit: Miller's Purely Maple
Photographs of Miller's Purely Maple, which can be found in Tioga County.
Dale and Melanie Miller, owners of Miller’s Purely Maple, have been involved in the maple industry nearly their entire lives.
Dale dabbled in the trade before he met and married Melanie, whose family produced maple while she was growing up.
“We were hooked,” Dale said.
Today, the couple oversees their own farm in Tioga County, which includes a sugar bush covering 570 acres and encompassing 7,000 taps.
Sap is collected using a tubing system that connects to the trees and runs underground. Once the sap reaches the sugar house, it is processed into quality maple syrup over a wood fire. And other byproducts are made from there!
Each season, the Millers produce an average of 1,000 gallons of syrup, reaching a goal they set for themselves in the early days of their business.
They’ve now set their sights on reaching 1,500 gallons each season.
The couple operates a small retail shop adjacent to their home year-round, and over the weekends in the summer, you can find their sweet syrup products at their concession stand at the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon.
Although Dale and Melanie’s sons, Joel and Justin, grew up helping out on the maple farm, it is unclear if they will continue in their family’s footsteps.
“I call myself a first and last generation producer,” Dale says with a grin, adding that the family business will one day be theirs if they so wish.
These images were captured by Bill Crowell as part of the 2018 Creative Makers Exhibit, a traveling showcase of creative makers working in the PA Wilds.
More about the show here. Proceeds from the sales of the Creative Makers Exhibit photographic tiles & posters will go back into the work of the Wilds Cooperative and the extension of this project as we will continue photographing the creative makers living and working in the PA Wilds.
Each tile measures 8 in x 8 in and is mounted on foam core that is approximately 3/4 in thick and comes with adhesive attached for wall mounting.
Please note: Orders for photographic tiles are placed in a batch at the end of each month with the vendor, and then take an additional 2 weeks for delivery. Please be prepared that your order could take 4-6 weeks for delivery.
Over 10 years ago, a groundbreaking effort began to brand a quarter of the Commonwealth as the "Pennsylvania Wilds" and invest in it to create a premier nature, heritage and cultural destination that would fuel local economies and inspire stewardship among the people who live, work, play and visit the region. Engaging the region's artists and craftspeople in the work is key to building a meaningful regional brand and infusing pride into economically-distressed communities. The Wilds Cooperative of Pennsylvania, our membership program that supports artisans and entrepreneurs through such regional branding, was born out of this belief. Today, nearly 200 local artists and craftspeople participate in this juried arts and business development program. "Creative Makers" reflects the splendor and uniqueness of the Pennsylvania Wilds landscape and rural lifestyle, and the resourcefulness and talent of the artists who live and work here. PA Wilds Juried photographers captured the images, and our goal with the exhibit is to help tell the story of the creative individuals living and working in the PA Wilds.
This project is made possible through grants from the Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts.
The PA Wilds is home to an impressive and diverse community of skilled artisans, craftspeople, and producers working across a variety of media. The PA Wilds Conservation Shop is proud to source and curate our shop using products made the many talented makers of The Wilds Cooperative of Pennsylvania.
Learn more about our sourcing now.
PA Wilds Conservation Shops are owned and operated by the Pennsylvania Wilds Center for Entrepreneurship, Inc. a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit. To learn more about our nonprofit mission please visit pawildscenter.org.