What an incredible year. It started out with a bang and just kept getting more wonderful. Here are some highlights:
1. Being named one of Indy’s 15 people to watch in 2015.
No pressure, right?
2. We got an apprentice!
Have you met Brittany? She’s been such a delightful and helpful part of Bee Public’s year. As we move in to an even more education-focused mission and expand our network of beehives, she’ll continue to *bee* there. Want to participate in Bee Public’s 2016 Apprenticeship Program? Email us.
Apprentice Brittany with a “foundation-less” frame of bees
3. Geeking out with fellow beekeepers in Chicago and Portland
One of the coolest things about the internet is being able to connect with fellow beekeepers near and far. Kate made a visit to Chicago and Portland this year, meeting up with Bike-a-Bee’s Jana Kinsman and Bee Local’s Damian Magista. It just so happens they’re some of the coolest beeps you’ll ever meet.
Kate inspecting a rooftop hive in Portland, OR
4. Catching a swarm along the Cultural Trail
Your calls, tweets, and emails made it happen. Just before one of the busiest weekends of the summer, we captured a swarm of bees along the Cultural Trail and re-homed them to a nearby urban farm.
5. We won a Sustain Indy Grant!
Jim Poyser and Kate Franzman
Our good friend Jim Poyser of Earth Charter Indiana teamed up with Bee Public to land this $10,000 grant from Indy’s Office of Sustainability for our new program, Save the Bees Indiana. With the money, we’ll be traveling to schools all over Indiana to talk about bees, getting kids, parents, and teachers to take action to decrease or eliminate the use of bee-killing pesticides, to take civic action, and we are integrating art by having each student create a bee sculpture from recycled materials, which we will exhibit on Earth Day 2016 at the ArtsGarden.
6. We’ll be placing bee hives in schools next year
Part of the Save the Bees project also includes placing beehives or pollinator habitats at area schools. Bee Public’s mission has continued to evolve over the years, focusing more and more on education, particularly youth education. We are pleased and excited to place beehives at (at least) six schools next year.
Sky Farm bee hive at Eskenazi Health
In 2015, Bee Public gave more than 35 talks, classes, and field trips (with around 2,000 participants total) about bees. Not to mention all the folks we reach online through social media. Thanks to your donations and support, Bee Public will continue to spread the word about why bees are so important to us and what we can do to help them out. In the next few months, we’ll be visiting more classrooms to talk about bees and hope to continue educational programming with organizations including the Patachou Foundation, the Indianapolis Museum of Art, the Children’s Museum and more.