Upcoming Events

Bee education should never stop. Even this old worker bee is continually humbled in the classroom of the hive, sigh. As I struggle through the grief of bee-loved husband Marshall’s passing, I’m slowly returning to speaking and teaching. Upcoming events:

Middle of the Mitten Beekeepers, July 25: Overwintering (yes, really!)

Kalamazoo Valley Community College, Beekeeping 103, August 13 into September

Kalamazoo Bee Club, Overwintering Success, August 14

 

Presentation Topics

Apiary Safety

Having worked with two longterm, experienced beekeepers who went into anaphylaxis when stung, Charlotte, greatly assisted by a beekeeping ER doctor, has compiled safety tips on not only stings, but other safety considerations. One attendee recommended this talk / these topics be mandatory for all bee clubs.

Bee Awesome

We all think bees are awesome. This presentation focuses on key tools, techniques and strategies any beekeeper can use — so that maybe bees will also think we are awesome. Charlotte will outline strategizes for the months ahead about what you can do different and better for next season, ways you can help all pollinators, and help you “bee” inspired (and awesome!)

Mistakes We Make

The common bee-ginner mistakes are known … but what are the usual stumbles for the second year and beyond? And the inevitable oopsies  so many of us did? Learn from those who have gone before you in this humorous review of problems, pitfalls and landmarks on the way to success.

Orientation Flight

Charlotte presented this keynote speech for the first time at the Michigan Beekeeper’s Association’s first ever upper peninsula conference. Based upon the warm reception, she looks forward to future presentations.

Beekeeping is much like a bee’s orientation flight—a quasi-leap of faith into the unknown fascinating world, with key signposts, dangers and points of fascination along with way. Charlotte’s presentation, laced with humor and facts, will inform, educate and inspire new and experienced beekeepers alike.

A Number of Things I Know About Bees / BEE-ingo

Charlotte’s presentations usually feature interesting and fun slides, but when she is speaking to smaller groups, and / or if power is not available (bee meetings in the middle of a field), she has a “Plan Bee.”

Using specially-adapted Bee-ingo cards with relevant bee numbers (like “3: the number of days bees are an egg”), Charlotte explains each number’s relevance as it is selected. From key bee statistics, to interesting and fun bee facts, to unusual statistics delivered with her usual wit and humor … it is a highly interactive, educational and engaging romp for newbees and those who think they knew almost all of it. Of course, there are FABULOUS prizes for the Bee-ingo winners!

This presentation was trialed at the Michiana Beekeeper’s Association August 2016 meeting, and received robust, rave reviews. Since then, it has been played at various club meetings throughout Michigan, and at the 2024 Michigan Beekeepers Association Spring Conference.

Jeopar-bee

This interactive, team-based quiz game is a proven winner. Featuring bee-related categories like “All Mite-y” and “Bee Famous”, we review all-things-bee in a fun, humorous environment … complete with prizes.

What You Need to Know About Mites

You love your bees, and / or you’re trying to help this critical insect, and / or (laughably) you’re earning money for a private jet from this lucrative hobby. What’s going to keep you from succeeding? Mites.

Charlotte reviews the mite lifecycle, ways to naturally kept the insidious parasite under control, how to test to determine if a colony is overrun, and options for handling it if so.

Bee-holden

Beyond pollinating a third of the food we eat, there are so many other reasons to appreciate and laugh with this insect.  Charlotte reviews some of the amazing things and memorable people she’s encountered working with bees, and explores our fascination with and yes–adoration of this insect.

Some Things I Know About Cutouts

Every cutout is different, although they’re all incredibly interesting.  Charlotte reviews considerations and essentials based on her personal experience and interviews with a dozen others who have rehomed–or attempted to rehome–honeybees.

Beyond the Bees’ Knees 

An overview of the critical honeybee, what’s happening with its survival, personal reflections about beekeeping, and Q&A. This presentation is tailored to adults, furthering their knowledge with a discussion of some of the amazing facets of this insect, how we can help, and what a beekeeper does.

After “To Bee” 

Now that you decided “to bee,” how will you manage your apiary with regards to diseases, pests and expansion? How might factors such as personal beliefs, budget, and location affect your approach? If you’re already buzzing, what are considerations as you evolve your apiary management style?

Odd BeeHavior 

We beekeepers are … “special,” and so are the insects we cherish. This humorous review of some of the amusing things many of us have done, interlaced with practical beekeeping tips, is a light opportunity to enjoy and reflect on this fascinating hobby, while learning.

What We Wished We’d Known in the Bee-ginning

Based on information gathered from beekeepers over six years, this insightful presentation reviews commonly cited knowledge and lessons from hundreds of beekeepers. The information highlights common challenges for new beekeepers, and guides beekeeper coaches and bee school organizers on key topics.

Charlotte’s passion for beekeeping shines through. This presentation will motivate and encourage those entering this fascinating endeavor while providing practical information, as well as humorously remind experienced beekeepers of the struggles we all faced.

Life Lessons Taught by Bees

Gold can be found even on the darkest of days, sometimes in the form of honey. Against the backdrop of an entertaining story, Charlottes shares how she fell head-over-hive tool in love with bees, and offers helpful insights and lessons on handling bees, and life’s challenges.

This motivational topic is ideal for bee schools, to encourage new beekeepers. It’s also a helpful “relief” session in the midst of pests-diseases-problem sessions, allowing folks need to sit back and remember the joys beekeeping can bring.

NewBee Mentoring

A great mentor can make all the difference, but they’re hard to find. Perhaps harder is mentoring! This presentation outlines both “sides” of the challenge and how to work toward the goal: bringing along a great beekeeper.

Overwintering

Keeping bees (alive) in any climate is challenging, but Michigan / northern Indiana have some additional requirements to address in order to see the little darlings fly back out again in March or April.

Thinking about keeping bees?

In an information-packed, interactive session, Charlotte reviews the financial, time and physical commitments required, along with starter info like hive location and preparation, basic equipment types and essentials, and the various options for obtaining bees, followed by a Q&A session.

Good Mentors & Mentees

This relationship is SO helpful to beekeeping success, if it is a successful relationship. This talk reviews some do’s, and don’t do’s, for both parties.

Other Topics

Charlotte has developed presentations based on the audiences’ needs—Honeybees 101How to Help Honeybees, etc. She appreciates the challenge of developing and tailoring a message for your audience. Contact her  to discuss how her knowledge, high energy, and engaging and humorous delivery may be put to work to help honeybees and beekeepers.

Past Major Speaking Engagements

Holland Area Beekeeper’s Association Bee School, 2023 — 2024

Michigan Beekeepers Association Fall Conference, 2013 — 2022

Michigan Beekeepers Association Spring Conference,  2013, 2016 — 2024

Lost Nations Bee School,  January 2020

Upper Peninsula Beekeeping Conference,  2018-2019, 2024; Upper Peninsula Beekeeping Conference held at NMU | WJMN – UPMatters.com, also an interview on public television regarding UP beekeeping: https://wnmuvideo.nmu.edu/video/its-all-about-the-bees-a0ulgk/

Kalamazoo Bee Club’s Bee School, Kalamazoo, MI,  2013, 2015-2024

Beekeeper’s Guild, Petoskey, MI,  February 2017

Crosshatch, Traverse City, MI February 2017

Western Michigan University OLLI Course,  June 2016 & June 2018

Albion Bee School,  February 2016

Heartland Apicultural Society, Albion, MI, July 2015

Dahlem Conservancy/Dahlem Center, Jackson, MI, February 2015

Kosciusko County Soil and Water Conservation District Annual Meeting, Warsaw, IN, February 2015 

Pennsylvania State Beekeepers Association Fall Conference 2014

Michiana Fall Banquet 2014

York County Beekeepers Association, York, PA, June 2014

Arkansas Beekeepers Association Fall Meeting 2013

Kelley Field Day 2013

Garfield Park Conservatory Bee Event 2012

Kelley Field Day 2012

Other Speaking Engagements
Numerous presentations to bee clubs, garden groups, church groups, assisted living groups, scouting groups, elementary and preschools, service clubs, and summer camps.