I suggest that you check around in your area for a beekeeping club, even if it is the next county. They often teach an annual beekeeping school. My club just completed a two day school last weekend with 50 students. We also have two beeyard visits each year with hands-on and eyeballs-on inspection of all hives.
I noticed that you are in Wytheville, VA. There is going to be a Virginia State Beekeeper Association meeting at the Wytheville Community College on April 16 and 17, 2010. Here is a link for more information.
I frequently get requests from folks who ‘want to work with me to learn beekeeping’. Way too many weren’t committed and it consumed too much time. I discovered that when they came to help, even if they were willing to work, whenever we got started, I instinctively went into the ‘teacher mode’. Ultimately it took much longer to get anything done with their help. It wasn’t always their fault. Which is why I started teaching beginning beekeeper classes and now am unwilling to take volunteer help.
Take a class and get a good book and some individual trial and error will to get you started.
Best to you.
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