Rogers Center news

Rogers Center hosts cooking with fire workshops

Christina Hall led a maple syrup education class for students in the Winter Adventure camp at Rogers Center Feb. 21, 2019.

Forget the gas or electric debate; cooking over an open fire is the way to go. If you are planning a camping trip or just looking for a new outdoor activity, we’ll help you learn how to prepare food on an open flame.

“Cooking With Fire” is the latest in the EdVenture Series offered by the Rogers Environmental Education Center in Sherburne, NY. It will be offered twice, on Thursday, March 14 at 6:30 p.m. at the Rogers Center and on Saturday, March 23 at 1:30 p.m. at Empire Farm Brewery on Rippleton Road in Cazenovia.

“There’s nothing like being able to cook for yourself over an open fire,” said Friends of Rogers Executive Director Simon Solomon. “This will be a lot of fun, and a great way to spend a few hours as winter winds down.”

Make yourself at home and taste some delicious, rustic delicacies around the firepit at Rogers Center, at Empire Farm Brewery, or both, since coming back for seconds is encouraged!

Friends of Rogers hosts a family fun event with maple syrup this Saturday

Everyone knows that New York state produces a lot of excellent maple syrup, but did you know we’re part of one of the top five maple producing regions worldwide?

To celebrate New York’s maple ties, Rogers Environmental Education Center is throwing “Maple Mayhem” Saturday, March 16, from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Participants can join Friends of Rogers in sampling our maple syrup and help turn some into maple sugar candy.

The event will be led by Christina Hall, a 4-H educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Chenango County. Hall presented a program about maple syrup production in February as part of the Winter Adventure camp.

Friends of Rogers named its new maple operation the Selleck Sugaring Project to honor former FOR Board President Bruce Selleck Ph.D., the chair and professor of Geology at Colgate University who died in 2017.

In this first season, FOR put in 700 taps on 300 trees across its acreage. Syrup is already available for sale at the Center and soon can be purchased online.

“We’re proud to offer this new project in the name of our good friend, Dr. Bruce Selleck,” said Friends of Rogers Executive Director Simon Solomon. “We’re working hard this first season with the help of Heartwood Maple in Sherburne, who are boiling our sap to produce Rogers Center Maple Syrup. Now it’s time for our friends to taste the sweet rewards of our labor.”

“Maple mayhem” is the latest event that is part of the Family Fun Series, which offers free programming to all members of the public. Free-will donations are appreciated to help defray the costs associated with each event.

Grafters X Change brings together many ecologically-minded disciplines in late March

The worlds of art, ecology, agriculture, horticulture and technology will come together later this month as Friends of Rogers and Colgate University host a two-day conference, “Grafters X

Change: Branches and Networks.”

The conference runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, March 29, at the Schupf Art Studios in Hamilton; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, March 30, at the Rogers Environmental Education Center on Route 80 in Sherburne.

The event is free and open to the public. It will allow fruit tree grafters to exchange ‘scions,’ or shoots and twigs of live trees, as the grafting season begins. Grafting has several benefits, including:

  • the ability to produce two or more kinds of fruit on the same tree, such as lemons and oranges or different varieties of apples;
  • the convenience of saving space and water/fertilizer by making one tree act as two or more;
  • the saving of time when compared to a newly planted tree, which may take years to bear fruit;
  • the strengthening of a broken or damaged tree;
  • the potential for fighting disease and insect damage by grafting a healthy scion with an unhealthy tree;
  • the ability of a tree to obtain both ‘male’ and ‘female’ characteristics that allow it to cross-pollinate all by itself.

Participants will attend a wide range of workshops and demonstrations on seed-sharing, propagation techniques and sources, local tree species, eco-art, and sustainability. Eco-art is a contemporary social arts practice that brings living things into relationship with one another in a range of different (large and small, rural and urban) sites.

Among the presenters will be ecological artists, social practice artists, digital artists, college faculty from related fields, students, sustainability advocates, regional tree growers, and agroforesters.

Co-sponsors for this event include, Friends of Rogers, Colgate Arts Council, Upstate Institute, Colgate Sustainability Office, Colgate University Art and Art History, Colgate University Film and Media Studies and Colgate University Environmental Studies.

For more information, contact Margaretha Haughwout at or visit

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