Beekeeping schools planned throughout state

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Beekeepers of all experience levels will find topics to fit their interests and expertise in six beekeeping schools scheduled in every region of Kentucky between Jan. 22 and March 12.

The schools will offer classes for beginners and sessions targeted to experienced beekeepers. Vendors selling beekeeping equipment will set up displays at all the schools.

 “Honey bees play an extremely important role in Kentucky agriculture as crop pollinators,” Agriculture Commissioner Richie Farmer said. “Many beekeepers also sell honey, which helps producers make a living and generates economic activity in many Kentucky communities. The Kentucky Department of Agriculture is pleased to support these beekeeping schools.”

The Eastern Kentucky Beekeeping School in Hazard will kick off the series Jan. 22, followed by the Allen County Beekeeping School Feb. 5 in Scottsville, the Southeast Beekeeping School Feb. 12 in Corbin, the Northeast Kentucky Beekeeping School Feb. 26 in Morehead and the Audubon Beekeeping School March 5 in Henderson.

The largest school of the series, the Bluegrass Beekeeping School, is scheduled for March 12 at Kentucky State University in Frankfort. State Apiarist Phil Craft is soliciting submissions of photos or artwork for the cover of this year’s Bluegrass program. The deadline for entries is Feb. 15. The Department will announce the name of the winner March 1, and the winner will receive free registration for two to the school, a $40 value.

The one-day schools on Saturdays attracted a record number of people last winter, with combined attendance topping 1,100.

Pre-registration forms for the first school in Hazard must be mailed by Jan. 17. For more information on each school, including programs, pre-registration forms, directions and lists of vendors, visit the Kentucky State Apiarist’s Web page at www.kyagr.com/statevet/bees/index.htm.