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Following the Honey Trail – June 2013 Schedule

Originally posted on Top-Bar-Beehives.com

Since February, my partner Margo and I have been living in northern Minnesota where I have been busy working on a small, start-up herb farm and she has been studying home-birth midwifery.  Over the last month, we have unexpectedly felt a need to return back to our hive in Arizona, where we can be better focused on building a family and pursuing our goals in a newly inspired way.

While here in Duluth (MN), I have had the opportunity to attend a couple of Lake Superior Beekeeping Association meetings, which have helped me keep connected to my passion for honeybees.  I have been able to meet lots of local beekeepers and have been able to share Arizona beekeeping experiences and even one of our 18-Bar Pentagon Top Bar Beehives with the community up here in the Northland.

With a trip westward on the horizon, and a growing desire to meet more top bar beekeepers, I have planned a two week long road trip as I make my way back home.  Throughout Wisconsin, Minnesota, Nebraska, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona, I plan on spending time with backyard and commercial top bar beekeepers, documenting the history of top bar hives and capturing the important stories of these beekeepers.

I hope that these video interviews can be used educationally to further promote top bar beekeeping, inspiring and empowering more people to establish their own hives.  Beyond learning about the history of top bar hives and the current work of these beekeepers, I hope to also learn more about the medicinal value of honey (as well as propolis, pollen and wax) and about the ecological zones each hive is a part of.

Some topics of discussion will include the history of top bar hives, current pesticide research and activism, queen rearing, hive maintenance and troubleshooting, honey as medicine, beekeeping associations, how to establish a hive, and much more along the way!

I hope you can join me in exploration and maybe our paths will cross as I follow the trail of honey.

Travel map

My tentative schedule is as follows:

June 07 – Travel to Westby, WI June 08 – Jordan and Jody Bendel @ Wild Comb Apiary & TBA June 09 – Travel to Barrett, MN June 10 – Steve Ellis @ Old Mill Honey Co. & TBA June 11 – Travel to Omaha, NE June 12 – Michael Bush @ Bush Farms & TBA June 13 – Travel to Denver, CO June 14 – Helen Hastings & Vicki @ ToBeeOrNotToBEE June 15 – Jididdiah & Miles Mcgoughey of Boulder County Beekeepers Association (Possible Colorado Beekeepers Meeting) June 16 – Marty Hardison & TBA June 17 – TBA June 18 – Travel to Santa Fe, NM June 19 – TBA June 20 – Ken Hays @ Hays Honey Farm & TJ Carr June 21 – Les Crowder & TBA June 22 – Travel to Durango, CO June 23 – Tina & other Southern Colorado Beekeepers June 24 – Travel to Sedona, AZ

I will update this plan with more details over the next few days so please check back!  I promise this to bee super fun, educational and exciting and I am looking forward to connecting with more people who have a passion for honeybees.  If you’re interested in contributing to my project and are along this path, please contact me and I’ll stop by and see you.

Thank you!  – Russell

* Map courtesy of Google