How was the Open-Hive Event?

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With the Open-Hive behind me, the garden in maintenance mode, and the bees content to do their thing, there’s a momentary lull in the activity here at Runamuk that affords me the opportunity to write. Generally speaking, things are going well here at Runamuk’s new location. It’s painstakingly slow progress, but it’s progress and I’m content with that.

The Open-Hive Event did not go quite to plan… My partner and I worked hard to prepare the farm for guests, we prepped bee-equipment for making of splits and nucs, bought food to feed people, and hung the Somerset Beekeepers’ banner where it could be seen. The long anticipated hygienic Queens from Kirk Webster arrived in the mail and I was eager to increase my hive numbers.

I watched the forecast for that Saturday–early predictions said there was a chance for a possible shower later in the day–I figured the event would be over by then, so it wouldn’t affect plans. But then as Saturday drew closer the forecast called for off and on showers. I thought we could fit in hive inspections between showers and forged valiantly ahead with my schemes.

Saturday dawned cool and wet. There never were any breaks in the rain. Knowing full well that we wouldn’t be opening hives in the rain, my beekeepers found other ways to spend the day and the farm was quiet.

But I still had Queens to install so I watched and waited for the rain to let up. I was desperate get into the hives and make my splits and nucs in order to be able give those Queens a home. They were an expensive investment at a time when Runamuk’s funds are almost non-existent. But I’d ordered them almost 2 years ago and have been waiting with baited breath for their arrival, so there was no way I wasn’t going to utilize them. With an eye to the future I put together 6 nucs–4 for myself, 2 for an aspiring local beekeeper, and re-Queened the 2 weakest hives from my existing colonies–effectively bringing Runamuk’s hive-count up to 9. Yay bees!

Despite the fact that the Open-Hive Event was a bust, I didn’t let it get me down. It’s inspired me to begin hosting more workshops here–it’s a beautiful setting to learn in a relaxed and inspiring atmosphere. Who wouldn’t want to come to Runamuk to learn more about bees and beekeeping, or soap and salve-making? I’m super exited by the concept.

What do you think? Is this a smart idea? Would you or someone you know be interested in attending a workshop at Runamuk? Do you have suggestions for workshops or events that I could hold here at the farm? I welcome you to leave your remarks below.

Share your thoughts, comments or questions!