Making molasses is no easy process. Harvesting sugarcane or sorghum, boiling the extracted juices, and skimming the liquid as it becomes thicker can take days. For devotees, the sacrifice is worth the reward because there’s nothing that tastes exactly like this Appalachian staple, which flavors goodies from biscuits and stack cakes to baked beans and barbecue sauce.
For the past 28 years, fans have celebrated their love for the smoky syrup at the Molasses Festival in Granite Falls. Attendees can learn the art of making this delicacy from experts who will demonstrate the boiling and skimming process at the on-site mill. The $2 admission fee also grants festivalgoers access to apple cider and apple butter-making lessons, and a portion of the proceeds go to missionary projects.
More mountain traditions add to the appeal: Hayrides, performances by the Sims Country Cloggers, bluegrass music, crafts, and a Miss Molasses pageant are part of this sweet (and sticky) celebration.
9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Sims Country Bar-B-Que 6160 Petra Mill Rd.