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Author Topic: New Bee Club?  (Read 1141 times)
vmmartin
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« on: April 10, 2012, 11:30:01 PM »

A few friends and I are kicking around the idea of starting a bee club in our area (about a 3 or 4 county region).  There are no clubs around here that I have found.  The only one was several years ago and the story I heard was that it dissolved because alot of the members could not get along. Go figure.  If you have any advice about starting one, I would greatly appreciate any. Thanks,
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FRAMEshift
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« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2012, 05:19:02 AM »

Hardin County has over 50,000 people.  My first thought is that you could start in one county.  Make sure you can get along with each other and let it grow slowly.   If members are spread out over a large area you will have trouble getting folks to come to meetings.  It's better to bond well with a few people than to have a big fussy group.  That's my experience anyway.

And use the internet.  Social groups (like Yahoo or Google) allow lots of communication between meetings.
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"You never can tell with bees."  --  Winnie-the-Pooh
indypartridge
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« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2012, 06:51:55 AM »

A friend and I started our local club about 3 years ago. We reserved a room at the library, put an ad in the local (weekly) paper announcing a meeting for people interested in beekeeping, and personally contacted every beekeeper we knew in the area. Had about a dozen show up for that first meeting. We have a membership list of about 50 now, with an average attendence of around 20.

We don't have any formal organization. No agenda, no officers, no dues. We get together and talk about whatever beekeeping problems or issues are on people's minds. We mentor newbees, go to each other's homes to help with inspections, splits or whatever. About once or twice a year we have  "planned" meeting with a speaker (such as the State Apiary Inspector) or maybe a class of some kind. We have a Yahoo group mailing list to keep people connected.

On the other hand, there's a new club a couple counties away, and the personality of that club is completely different. They have officers, formal bylaws, take minutes, each meeting has a printed agenda is planned months in advance. They have a professionally done website.

The point is that every group has a distinct personality and you have to adjust and adapt to that. Don't have a lot of preconceived notions about how it should be, just let it develop.
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RandyMM
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« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2012, 10:01:19 AM »

Hey, Buddy. I like indypartridge's comments about their club. Especially the guest speaker or class on occassion. Kind of informal but everyone is connected, less time in formal meetings and more time helping each other do what we enjoy.
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sterling
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« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2012, 11:35:31 AM »

Go for it. Everyone involved will gain from it.
I'm a member of two local beekeepers clubs. I live about midway between where they meet. One is in Nashville Tn. the other is the Wilson Cty. beekeepers. Both are good organizations with good leadership. They have monthly meetings with speakers at some meetings.  Both have classes for beginners and mentors for beginners. Annual membership fee is $10 and I think well worth it. The Wilson Cty club has over 200 members and the Nashville club is probably close to that. They also have websites for outreach and education about bee stuff.
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BlevinsBees
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« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2012, 01:47:56 PM »

Excellent endeavor. Be prepared to spend about double the time you initially think it will take for start-up and managing. Besides that, it's very rewarding.
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BjornBee
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« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2012, 03:11:42 PM »

What type club? One that meets every month? One with a much more active program? Nonprofit? It is always exciting to start a new club where barriers and the "We have done this for the past 50 years" is not confining what you can accomplish.

I started a statewide or regional association less than two years ago. We now have 425 members, and have a very active and proactive program. You can see some of what we are doing at the PennApic website listed at the bottom of this post. I would be more than willing to chat if you send me a phone number via PM.
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FRAMEshift
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« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2012, 04:15:34 PM »

and the "We have done this for the past 50 years" is not confining what you can accomplish.

I know what you mean, but it can go the other way too.  I'm aware of one club in which the new no-chemical members (some of whom have no bees shocked)  are criticizing loudly about those who use some chemical treatments when they feel they must.  Now, I'm a no-chemical guy myself, but tolerance of others is a better basis for a club.
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"You never can tell with bees."  --  Winnie-the-Pooh
vmmartin
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« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2012, 09:35:17 PM »

Thanks for all the input y'all.  So far the people that I have talked to about it are all pretty informal and laid back.  I am not a very organized person, nor do I enjoy planning.  I envision a club that is in the business of promoting beekeeping and doing it in a way that is friendly, inclusive, tolerant etc.  I have my way of thinking and doing just like everybody does, but I can sit and discuss my way vs. your way and we can still be friends.  I do not feel the need to "convert" a person to thinking my way in order to talk, hang out, or accomplish some good things together.  I think a group of beeks can do this and really help to promote and grow our hobby or business for that matter.  Essentially, I think a club should focus on what they have in common, which in this case is bees, instead of zeroing in on what we may not agree on. Chemical vs. not, foundation or not, the list is endless.  If a person is looking for a club that everybody keeps bees the same exact way, then they have found it in their self. A club of one which is what I am trying to avoid. Sorry if I rambled.
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howardaj31
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« Reply #9 on: April 12, 2012, 08:16:08 AM »

Count me in VM.  I look forward to it happening.  Whatever help you may need getting it off the ground, I will do all I can.  We need to have a coffee soon and see where we need to go.
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beetamer
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« Reply #10 on: April 13, 2012, 12:19:00 PM »

My boyfriend had started a new hobby that he loves caring for honey bees, he had inherited a couple of bee hives.  One stack of bee hives already has honey bees in it.  The other stack of bee hives is empty and he is wondering what do you use to lure bees in?  Also how far apart do you keep each hive?  I truly appreciate any advice giving to me we are new at this and excited at the same time.  Thank you

Beetamer. Smiley
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yockey5
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« Reply #11 on: April 13, 2012, 12:53:38 PM »

beetamer where are you located?
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vmmartin
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« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2012, 08:51:20 AM »

Update. We had our first "formal" informal meeting Tuesday and had 22 people attend.  From 50+ years experience all the way down to "Hey, I want some bees!".  We have named ourselves Southeast Texas Local Beekeepers.  BTMuldrow has worked her butt off putting this all together.  Thanks Tammy.  We have no officers, no dues, no profit and only one agenda. Promote beekeeping while building lasting friendships in the process.  Thanks for all the input and y'all should be seeing some new members on here from our club.
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Jim 134
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« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2012, 11:14:04 AM »

I only found a few beekeeping  clubs in TX.

ALAMO AREA BKPRS ASSOC
 Ron Schmidt
 Phone: 830-625-4997
 Email: AlamoBeekeepers@yahoo.com
 
CENTRAL TEXAS BKPRS ASSOC
 Michael Kelling
 Phone: (979) 277-0411
 Email: centraltexasbeekeepers@gmail.com
 www.centraltexasbeekeepers.org
 
EAST TEXAS BKPRS ASSOC (ETBA)
 Richard Counts
 16239 Audry Lane
 Arp, TX 75750
 Phone: (903) 566-6789

H.O.T. BKPRS ASSOC (Waco, Tx area)
 P.O. Box 211
 Hewitt, Texas 76643
 Gary Bowles (treasurer)
 PH 214 232 9858
 TexasGary@peoplepc.com
 
METRO BKPRS ASSOC
 Terry Botkin - President
 214-837-7256
 http://www.metrobeekeepers.net/
 
WEATHERFORD / PARKER CO BKPRS
 Jason Smith
 Phone: 817-597-5922
 1014 Charles St.
 Weatherford, TX 76086
 JaseEmtP@hotmail.com
 We meet the first Tuesday of the each month at 630pm until 8pm



  BEE HAPPY Jim 134 Smiley
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Franklin County Beekeepers Association MA. http://www.franklinmabeekeepers.org/
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