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Celebrate National Honey Bee Day this Saturday

August 15, 2013

Beekeeping enthusiasts from California to Florida will be celebrating the honey bee Saturday, Aug. 17. The Fifth Annual National Honey Bee Day (Theme: “Beekeeping — Ask me How to Get Started”) will be marked with celebrations and, if one group has TimeMagazineBeesits way, individuals and flash mobs breaking out with the “Waggle Dance.”
Honey bees need all of the help they can get these days (see this week’s Time Magazine), and a growing number of small producers and hobbyists are rallying to the cause and discovering the joys of keeping bees. The number of registered beekeepers in Florida has been on the rise for several years now.
Here in the Sunshine State, the day will be marked by local events in north central and central Florida.

North Central Florida

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This decorated hive will be raffled at the celebration in High Springs Aug. 17.

The North Central Beekeeping Association is particularly enthusiastic, organizing events that begin with Friday screenings of the documentary movie “Queen of the Sun” at the historic Priest Theater in High Springs ($5 admission), hosted by American Honey Princess Emily Campbell.

Saturday FDACS/DPI Apiary Inspector Stephen Cutts and his father, Florida Ag Hall of Famer and former DPI Apiary Chief Lawrence Cutts will be among the dignitaries attending the morning educational session at the Priest with speakers Gabe Dadant and Mary Cahill-Roberts.

An afternoon session will include a candle making and open-hive demonstrations, hive raffle and other activities. (details here.)

Central Florida

In Orlando,the Orange Blossom Beekeepers Association will present a celebration of the honey bee at Orange County University of Florida IFAS Extension, 6021 S. Conway Road. Local beekeepers will be selling honey, candles, soap and other products of the hive.

There will be an “Ask the Beekeeper” forum with master beekeepers available to answer any and all questions you may have about honey bees and pollinators. An observation hive will be on site so you can actually watch the bees at work in the hive.

Attending either of these celebrations, or another one in your area, may just inspire you to consider beekeeping yourself — or at least to celebrate our busy little pollinators by doing the Waggle Dance.

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