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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Posts
    386

    Default Need ideas for club meeting programs

    I’ve enjoyed reading the information presented in the “Short course ideas that make it unique” thread and as the new VP (program chairman) for the Pikes Peak Beekeepers Association I would like to solicit your ideas and suggestions for club meeting programs that have been well received in your clubs in the past. Our membership is just short of 200 including about 80 newbees who went through our annual 1 ½ day beekeeping course last March. The club meets quarterly and our experience level ranges from 30+ years down to the newbees. In addition we have two yard visits annually.

    All ideas and suggestions are welcome and appreciated.

    Bear Creek Steve

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Kingsport, Sullivan, Tennessee
    Posts
    789

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    A good topic to cover every month: What do we need to be doing for the next 30 days?

    With that discussion, the newer beeks will get input from those more experienced. Also, if you do it every month it will give them a reason to keep coming to the meetings. That, and the food.

    -james

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    moravia,ny
    Posts
    1,259

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    dixiebooks has a good idea but look at least 60 days ahead so students can order equip ahead get it together etc for their needs.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    2,773

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    Our club tries to do as dixiebooks suggests and I think its good for the newbees, but keep in mind the mid-level and experienced beekeepers need to feel that either they are getting something from or contributing to the meeting to stay fully engaged. I think clubs can get in a rut if they repeatedly cater to exclusively only the new members. Key is the mix it up. Get your really experienced members to offer specialty lectures that are focused towards more advanced topics. I also recommend, if your club has the resources, to bring in a special guest speaker once or twice per year - remember we're shooting for that hybrid vigor

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Dresden ,Tn 38225
    Posts
    113

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    I am planning to have at one of our meetings a photo slide show of our local plants when in bloom and photos of honeybees working those that I catch them on. I have taken a lot of photos during the spring ,summer,and fall. I thought this would help people identify the plants and possibly plant and protect plants that are pollen and nectar sources.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Washington County, Maine
    Posts
    2,963

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    The best program at our club involved frames from dead outs brought by our state apiarist and club members were to examine the frames and figure out why the hives died. There were close to 15 all together - Everything from starvation to AFB including the relatively new pollen bound problem. Another suggestion would be honey tasting - not just the members' honey but single varietal honeys produced regionally. We are fortunate to be able to get Tony Jadczak (Maine's State Apiarist) several times a year and he can speak knowledgeably on a variety of subjects. Tonight at the club's holiday potluck he spoke on small hive beetles which fortunately are not a big problem in our area.
    Master Beekeeper (EAS) and Master Gardener (U Maine CE) www.beeberrywoods.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    sewell, nj
    Posts
    529

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    good topic .. most clubs are just getting organized for 2014

    talk about topics basted on the next 30 to sixty day bee activity is a good one

    strong mentor program

    hive repair

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Hartville, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    143

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    We had our first meeting last week. One thing we will do each meeting is discuss what we need to be doing now.

    I asked at the meeting for suggestions for the March meeting. We will be covering swarm prevention, and catching/trapping swarms. We will probably be talking about splits also.

    An advanced topic I would like to see is overwintering nucs.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Macon, GA USA
    Posts
    953

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    We almost always make sure to have some general Q&A time for everyone to ask their questions. It keeps the discussion pertinent to what folks have going on at the time. Q&A with more than 50 or so can get a little unwieldy. Outside the normal beginner material, queen rearing always seems to have a lot of interest -- as does hearing large commercial beekeepers speak. The academic speakers are also popular but you usually have to schedule them months if not years in advance.

    If you need to raise money to get speakers, I would shy away from raising dues beyond a small nominal fee. It seems to go over about as well as raising taxes. The trick to fund raising for our local group is a raffle of donated items at every meeting. $1 a ticket for a chance to win anything from homemade goodies to an unwanted bee gadget to regifted knick-knacks. That raises more than enough money for us to bring in a few good speakers and makes our annual beginner class totally free.

    Honey contests have also been very popular for bragging rights - and advertising - "best tasting honey in xxx area"

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    independence,ky,usa
    Posts
    53

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    Another raffle is the "split the pot raffle". Winner gets 1/2 the money collected and the club gets the other 1/2.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,742

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    >A good topic to cover every month: What do we need to be doing for the next 30 days?

    To me an ideal beekeeping meeting is in a beeyard with a presentation on what you'd be doing now and a discussion on the topic by the other beekeepers. Ideas get exchanged. Newbees get exposure to what is seasonable, while oldtimers hear new ideas for other beekeepers. I had good luck in the summer doing these on a weeknight so it doesn't cut into people's beekeeping on the weekend. There is enough daylight to meet at a beeyard, do a presentation and end with a potluck.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO
    Posts
    386

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    Thanks for the ongoing ideas. With a mix of newbbe and oldbees in the membership it is always a challence to keep the programs interesting to all. More ideas and suggestions are always welcome.

    Steve

  13. #13
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    tacoma, wa. usa
    Posts
    171

    Default Re: Need ideas for club meeting programs

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    >A good topic to cover every month: What do we need to be doing for the next 30 days?

    To me an ideal beekeeping meeting is in a beeyard with a presentation on what you'd be doing now and a discussion on the topic by the other beekeepers. Ideas get exchanged. Newbees get exposure to what is seasonable, while oldtimers hear new ideas for other beekeepers. I had good luck in the summer doing these on a weeknight so it doesn't cut into people's beekeeping on the weekend. There is enough daylight to meet at a beeyard, do a presentation and end with a potluck.
    This!! It seems that "new beekeeping courses start out in January (around here), and we have a lot of new folks coming in to learn about the "basics"....instead of what is going on in their world right now, like wintering hive prep for (the next 30 days), bloom dates that are upon us and newbies generally know nothing about, but a year from now will be in a panic to try and sort it all out, along with swarm management, increasing from first year hives or just working through creating their plan....the second and third year folks could lend mightily to this from experience...and they learn by teaching.. All good....I've thought about a "seasonal" approach to the course work that would be relative to what tasks/skills they are focusing on this week and preparing for what is needed to get through the next thirty days. It did me little good to hear about how to check for eggs and verify the queen is laying in January, when I hadn't even purchased my hive boxes and my first bee's were not even going to be delivered until mid May....the conceptual and practical transfer of knowledge was so disjointed, I ended up going to other (and ultimately better) sources on the internet than my local class was able to deliver because they were locked into a course agenda, chapter 2. The good news is I found this site!

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