It’s tempting to say that last Saturday’s event at the Clifty Falls State Park Nature Center was the “Bee’s knees.” It really was a wonderful program on honeybees. There were several local beekeepers on hand as well as the Indiana State Apiarist. The volunteers set up several informational booths with demonstrations on honey collection, pollination and starting a hive. My daughter and I skipped along to each reading the colorful posters and talking to the presenters. At the pollination table we were given several flower seeds to attract honeybees including zinnia, cleome and Mexican hat. At the honey collection table we soothed our hands with beeswax lotion and cranked the handle of a collection device. We saw a queen bee laying eggs, tasted honey ice cream and hiked to a nearby hive in its natural state in the park.
My daughter crafted a buzzing toy bee with string and a Popsicle stick in the nature center while a fascinating documentary played about the creation of a natural hive. I had always wondered what a bee swarm was all about; that was just one of my many curiosities about bees that was satisfied on Saturday. We left with a book for my daughter, a door prize from the organizers, and we read it as soon as we got home. I even learned something from that: a worker bee will return to its hive and do a “dance” which signals to the other bees which direction to fly to find flowers.
My family and I were thoroughly charmed by the volunteers and presenters at “The Buzz About Bees.” We learned about the life of honeybees and were reminded of the interconnectedness of all living creatures.
The program was sponsored by GeezBeez Apiary (local Jefferson County Indiana producer of honey and bees), Southeastern Indiana Beekeepers’ Association, Indiana Beekeepers’ Association, and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.
Check out the Nature Center for a guided walk to the beehive and for some relaxing bird watching!
~ Angela Elles