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DERBY â€“ Paul Letourneau is the epitome of a hearty Northeast Kingdom man. He is 86 years old and continues to successfully run his maple sugar bush and event hall after 40 years. Not only is sugar making his livelihood, but his passion and hobby as well.
Letourneau moved to Derby from Holland in 1965 and bought 75 acres of maples trees. Over the years, the net sap results go up and down, but this year is record setting for earliest sap flow. Letourneau started boiling Feb. 27 and has already made over 300 gallons.
It is still unclear what the season will yield, but he senses it will be a good year. Last year produced slim results â€“ only 500 gallons. However, the previous year saw near record production with 1,100 gallons. It depends what Mother Nature has in store, Letourneau explained.
For more of this story, see Tuesday's edition of The Newport Daily Express for March 12, 2013.