Bee Aware Events in June
With summer in full swing in Northern Michigan, the bees will be out in the fields pollinating this season’s crops like our iconic tart cherries and crisp fall apples. Bees play a crucial role as pollinators of foods from almonds to strawberries to tomatoes as well as cherries and apples. It’s tough to imagine not being able to enjoy these foods, but a distressing worldwide decline in bee numbers behooves us to consider what life would be like without them.
Are those pesky, stinging insects really that important? Consider that about a third of our foods, some 100 key crops, rely on these insects and that bees contribute more than $15 billion to U.S. crop production. But bees are dying at an alarming rate. The winter of 2012-2013 showed an average loss of 45% of U.S. hives, and a total loss of 31% of commercial hives.
A major culprit in the decline of bees is a class of pesticides called neonicotinoids. Banned in Europe, the U.S. routinely uses neonicotinoids. Other factors include disappearing foraging habitat, fungal and viral pests, and the Varroa mite.
Stop by Oryana throughout the month of June and learn more about the plight of the bees and the valuable work they do throughout the world.
Bee Aware Events
Wednesday, June 11, 12 – 2 p.m. Know Your Honey
What’s the difference between regular (heated) honey and raw honey? Is there a taste difference? Find out the answers to these sweet questions by tasting samples of various types of honey products including comb honey.
Wednesday, June 18, 11 a.m. – 1 pm Meet Your Local Beekeeper
Stop by Oryana and meet Greg Griswold of Champion Hill Farm in Beulah. Try a sample of Greg’s honey products including raw honey and honeycomb and learn all about his bees.
Friday, June 20, 4 – 6 p.m. Mead Tasting
Sample a taste of local mead from St. Ambrose Cellars, a product of Sleeping Bear Farms of Beulah. Mead is a refreshing alcoholic beverage made from fermented honey and water. (Note: You must be 21 with I.D. to sample alcohol.)
Tuesday, June 24
- 9 – 10 a.m. What Will Happen if the Bees are Gone? Bees are pollinators that are responsible for many of our favorite fruits and vegetables. View an interesting and surprising demonstration in the produce department of what fruits and vegetables would no longer be available if bees were to disappear.
- 2 – 5 p.m. Meet Your Local Beekeeper Stop by Oryana and meet the proprietors of Sleeping Bear Farms in Beulah. Try a sample of their honey products including raw honey, wildflower honey, and honeycomb and learn all about their bees.
- All Day Oryana to Donate 1% of Store Sales to Bee Native Shop at the store today and Oryana will donate 1% of the day’s sales to Bee Native, a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide education about bees and the environment, strengthen the honeybee population and the health of the bees, provide hive equipment, bees and training in organic, chemical free beekeeping methods, and create sustainable micro business opportunities to further train and benefit the community.
- All Day Honey Straw Giveaway Shoppers will receive a free local honey straw today
Monday, June 30, 6 p.m. “More Than Honey” Documentary at the State Theater
Oryana is sponsoring a film by Swiss filmmaker Marcus Imhoof, “More Than Honey.” This film is about the relationship between humans and honeybees, about nature and our future and was nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film at the 86th Academy Awards.
(Note: This film is showing at the State Theater, 233 E Front Street, Traverse City. Tickets are $8.50 for Adults, $7.50 for Seniors 65 and Over, and $6.50 Students and Kids 12 and Under.)