December Guild Meeting (Pot Luck)

Join us on December 13th from 4-7pm to celebrate the turn of the year, as the days get longer after the winter solstice and we begin to look toward the next beekeeping season . . .

The Philadelphia Beekeepers Guild‘s annual Winter Solstice Pot Luck at St. James School, 3217 W. Clearfield St., will be a great event for people wanting to start beekeeping next season – come and meet beekeepers in a casual setting and start asking questions.

We have a full agenda this meeting which includes partying, followed by more partying.  Bring your family, friends, random strangers and your favorite dish to share.  A sandwich tray, soft drinks and utensils/cups/plates will be provided by the Guild – so we need a head count.  Send an e-mail to to tell us   

  • what food you will bring
  • how many people you will bring 

St James School has graciously allowed us to bring alcohol on the premise, so feel free to bring a bottle of your best meade, a 30 pack of PBR pounders, or anything in between that you like!

Please note:  This Pot Luck IS the December 2014 meeting – there is no other meeting on December 19th, 2014.

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2015 Natural Beekeeping Symposium

UPDATE: Online registration has CLOSED.  

We will be able to accomodate a limited number of walk-ins on Sunday morning.  
Walk-in tickets are first-come, first-served. 

Prices will be $35 general admission; $25 Guild members; $20 Temple students with ID. 

Sunday February 8, 2015  10 am to 4 pm

Temple University – Kiva Auditorium
1301 Cecil B. Moore Ave Philadelphia, PA 19122
Directions (via googlemaps) | Parking Info (Liacouras Lot is recommended)

Due to generous sponsorships from Temple University Office of Sustainability and Whole Foods Market (Mid-Atlantic North region), we are able to offer the symposium tickets for LESS THAN LAST YEAR’S PRICE for those who register by January 31, 2015!  Guild Members $20; Non-members $30, and holders of current Temple University IDs $15.  Click the following EventBrite link to register.

Eventbrite - Philadelphia Beekeepers Guild 5th Annual Natural Beekeeping Symposium
Groups of 10 or more people registering at the same time will receive the member rate, which is ideal for other local beekeeping associations who want to organize an educational trip to our fair city! Contact to arrange the group rate.

Box lunch is included in the ticket price.  Vegetarian options are available.  When purchasing your ticket, please comment on your dietary restrictions so the caterer can provide what you require.

Tips on parking and public transportation may be found at the following link:

The symposium will feature Ross Conrad, who is a well-respected beekeeper and author of a number of books and DVDs on natural beekeeping.  Ross also runs the website which has a wealth of information about keeping bees without the use of chemicals and pesticides.

The first 50 ticket purchasers will be entered into a drawing to have a free dinner with Ross Conrad and the Board of the Guild Sunday Feb 8 after the symposium.
Registration opens at 9:30 am, tentative agenda follows:
10 am – 12 pm Ross Conrad
Getting started with Organic Beekeeping: a balanced view of natural and organic beekeeping topics and practices  with emphasis on pest management.
12 – 1 pm  lunch and vendor browsing
1 – 2 pm  Katy Ciola Evans,  University of Delaware
 Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and results of her 2014 IPM study of treatment-free beekeepers; citizen science.
2 – 4 pm  Ross Conrad 
Working with Swarms & Queens:  Based upon research conducted at Cornell University, Ross will share tips on understanding the swarm and how to evaluate the queen and resolve queen issues as they come up.
4 pm raffle drawing . . . socializing/cleanup 

More details about the topics will be provided as the date gets closer.  Please check back periodically for updates.
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20 Nov 2014 – Business Meeting

In order for the Guild to operate as a well-oiled machine (or a stoked smoker!), members rotate onto and off of an Executive Board.  The remaining members do their best to take part in the vote, which satisfies our requirements as a not-for-profit entity in the Commonwealth of PA.

Two important votes at the next meeting will position us to become a 501C3 – FEDERAL non-profit.
1) Slate of officers – click each name below, to read the Candidate Statements
Don Shump (Pres.)
Dave Harrod (Vice Pres)
Amy Hsu (Treasurer)
Russ Alexander (Secretary)
Leah Troiano (Info Coordinator)

Member Representatives:  Wynn Geary (Social Media Coordinator), Mike Gonzales (Newsletter), Austin MartinKaren Cherubini, Norris Childs, Suzanne Matlock (Past President)

2) Constitution & Bylaws – click here to read them *INPUT REQUESTED ON THIS DRAFT*

Even though the Bylaws are not officially approved by you, the members, we are acting in the spirit of the bylaws by providing the information that is the subject of the voting ONE MONTH in advance of the meeting.  On 20-Nov-2014, we will vote on these two important topics.  And then we will have our usual beekeeper educational session.

Thank you in advance for participating in the important practice of voting.  Oh, yeah, don’t forget there’s another election on Nov. 4th!!

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October Guild Meeting

f971b3e5-4b5c-45b0-a98d-ff60b47fbd27Thursday, October 16, 7:30 pm at St. James School

Overwintering techniques with Keith Jardine

Winter is right around the corner, are you wondering how to prepare the hives to make it through?   Come and hear Keith Jardine discuss overwintering techniques on Thursday, October 16, 7:30 pm at St. James School.  Keith started beekeeping in 1976 when a swarm arrived in his yard in South Africa.  By the time he was 16, Keith had over 17 hives.  Keith, who grew up with Africanized bees is now local to Philadelphia and shares beekeeping experience from both hemispheres.  Keith Jardine is also the President of Chester County Beekeepers Association.

Philadelphia Beekeepers Guild meetings are free and open to anyone.  As the sun goes down at 6:30 these days, we do not expect to hold an open hive talk again until spring.

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18 September – Montco Beekeepers Meeting

Since the Honey Fest was our September meeting, you may want to get out to Montgomery County Beekeeper’s Association (MCBA) meeting on Thursday, September 18. 7 pm at the Skippack 4-H Center.  1015 Bridge Rd., Collegeville, PA 19426

The presentation is by Walter Sheppard, Professor and Chair, Department of Entomology, Washington State University (WSU).  In 2008, the WSU honey bee program began overseas collection and importation of semen from three European honey bee subspecies, Apis mellifera carnica (Carniolan), A. m. caucasica (Caucasian) and A. m. ligustica (Italian)under permit from USDA-APHIS Starting in 2011, the cryopreserved semen was used for backcrossing and further enhancement of the proportion of Old World parentage of US honey bee stock.  WSU now distributes Carniolan, Caucasian and Italian breeder queens that have approximately 75% genetic origin from Old World sources.

MCBA is holding a Bee-Fit 5K at Pottstown’s Riverfront Park on Sunday, Oct. 5 to support their programs.  For details about the 5K, click here.

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September 5 – 7 = Guild “Meeting” = HONEY FEST!

GRID AD 2014

Thanks to the participation of many of our members and friends, the 5th Annual Philadelphia Honey Festival will take place this coming weekend, September 5 – 7.  Our venues are Wagner Free Institute (Fri), Wyck Historic House (Sat) and Bartram’s Garden (Sun).  The full schedules of events at the three partnering venues may be found at

We are especially proud of our Young Beekeepers Panel, four people under the age of 18 who will describe their experiences as beekeepers.  Meet Evelyn Feldman, Sophia Troiano, Murad Brundage, Tyriq Peterson on Saturday at Wyck and see beekeeping from a fresh young perspective!

Our partners at Wagner Free Institute, Wyck , and Bartram’s Garden join me in THANKING those of you who volunteered your time and talents to pull off a fantastic public awareness event on behalf of the bees.


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Aug 31, 2014 “Bees at the Bar”: Tatooed Mom’s

beebeard WynnDon Shump, 
Philadelphia Bee Co. will give a sneak preview of the Philly Honey Festival on August 31, 2014 at Tatooed Mom’s (a bar on South St) A BEE BEARD WILL OCCUR ~7pm Serving a signature cocktail: Honey Amor (a Manhattan with honey ginger syrup and bullet rye whiskey). Be there or be square!

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