Sidney Rotarians are ecstatic about the next installment in their summer series.
In collaboration with the Cullman Child Development Center in Sidney, the Rotary Club of Sidney will present “The Buzz About Honeybees” from 1 pm to 3 pm on Sunday, August 22 at Keith Clark Park at 70 River Street in Sidney.
According to a June press release, the events of the four-part series were designed to “provide hands-on, curious and stimulating educational activities for families in (the) community.” Previous events in the summer series have included Dairy Day and Big Rig Day, with Family of Heroes Day, celebrating fires, EMS, law enforcement and military personnel, postponed to September 12.
Sidney Rotarian, summer series planner and self-proclaimed novice beekeeper, Dr William Roche, said Sunday’s event aligns with Rotary’s high-profile values.
“When we first thought about this, making the summer series in collaboration with Cullman, Rotary had just released a 2021 initiative, as an addendum to Rotary International, on the environment,” he said. he declares. “We brought this to the Sydney Rotary Club and (we asked) what could we do that would be interactive, practical, and provide an educational opportunity that highlights areas of the environment that are sustainable, and one of those things is the bee.
Roche said that since the beginning of April, Rotarians have worked to make these concepts accessible and enjoyable for children.
“It’s important for us to realize that tonight when you sit down at the table, a third of everything (people) pick up on their forks is viable because of the bee,” he said. “Pollination is extremely important, but how do you get children to understand this? Mom and dad get up and go to work and the kids go to school, so why not focus on the bee analogy and how these guys have a family, they really work together, they collaborate, they have all their role, they’re going to go out there and do their work and come home at night… and assimilate that to young children? We have developed several stations… so we will teach them through interactive games why our farms are so important.
The stations, Roche said, will focus on the honeybee’s life cycle; identify roles within the hive; extraction; and bee products. Participants don’t have to worry about stings, he said, because “there will be no live bees in the open.”
“We have (four) local beekeepers helping us, (including) Everything Bees from Kutik of Oxford, and they are national,” he said. “We’ll have an observation beehive, which is a five-frame double-sided beehive behind glass, so the kids can go through the life cycle (station)… figuring out which are the workers, the cleaners, where the Queen; we reinforce that with the observation hive.
“And the bees aren’t just there to make honey, so we’ll have a beeswax melting station where (participants) make their own lip balm and kids can pick their own color and see some of the uses.” wax. Roche continued. “We will have three hands-on beekeeping craft stations… and a tasting station with different varieties of honey.”
Additional highlights, Roche said, will include face painting; photo shoots with high school students from Sidney dressed as beekeepers; extraction demonstrations at 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m., with provision of samples of freshly harvested honey; and learn the bee’s “waggle dance” with regard to non-verbal hive communication.
“The bees get up early and send out scouts,” he said. “Each child will receive a headband and a bee antenna, so they will all be little bees, and we will teach them the” waggle dance “- how bees communicate distance, direction and number of bees to each other. send. “
Roche said the response from attendees to previous summer series events gave him hope for Sunday and beyond.
“We’ve got so many people interested and we’re not asking for a dollar, we’re just giving back to the community, so people come,” he said. “Young families are going to sit there and say ‘Wow, this is a great organization.’ It has gotten so many hits on Facebook and so many people sharing it that… we’re hitting a nail on the head here.
“What’s gratifying is the response from the kids and it’s awesome,” Roche continued. “That’s why we’ve partnered up with a pediatric group, Cullman, because who knows kids better? It’s fun and that’s the bottom line: how do you make it fun? We are already planning 2022 (events) with different stations.
For more information, find “Rotary Club of Sidney, NY” or “Cullman Child Development Center” on Facebook.