August 2015 Meeting Minutes

Wannabee Hobby Beekeepers

Meeting Minutes – August, 2015

President Bob Asheim called the meeting to order at the Canyon Lake Senior Citizens Center on Wednesday, August 12, 2015, at 6:00 PM.  Approximately 33 people were in attendance, including Melissa Arias, a guest of Jan Snedigar.  Melissa is from Columbia, South America, is going to school in New York City, and is very interested in keeping bees.

Bob introduced the other officers, team members, and past presidents: Vice President Susan Nolan, Secretary Jan Snedigar, Program Director Tina Mulally, Librarian Dan Mulally, and past presidents Jerry Owens, Tom Allen and Bill Clements.  Treasurer Kia Smith was absent.

Bob stated where we are now in the Bee Year is planning what you need to do over the next 3 months to prepare your bees for winter.

–The eggs that the queen is laying now will be your winter bees.

–Things are slowing down, the bees may be still be harvesting from alfalfa, but the main crops are completed.

–Regarding varroa mites, it is not a question of “IF” they are in your hives, but how populous they are.  In fact, the best hives will have the most mites because they have more drones.  It’s important to do a mite check on your hives as part of winter preparation, and follow your mite treatment protocol. He suggests we need to changing our thinking about our colonies to include queen, workers, drones, and mites.

–Remember not to medicate your hives before taking out honey, with one exception:  Mitaway Quick Strips can be used in a hive and not affect the honey.


A Treasurer’s report was not read.


Bob asked to go AROUND THE ROOM for members to report on the status of their bees.  Most members report that their colonies are doing well, and that this is a good honey year.  Members also report there is a huge demand for honey. Some members’ reports were as follows:

–Florence Thompson of Caputa, said she thought all her bees were gone, but they revived and are an active colony now. She is very glad to have them back.

–Susan Nolan’s colony in Rapid City also revived, and in fact they have been bearding–which Bob and other members said is for keeping cool during the heat of August, probably not swarming this time of year.

–Dan Mulally of Rapid Valley has 4 colonies, and has gotten 220 lbs of honey so far.

–Glennis Torpey of Black Hawk reports harvesting 21 gallons of beautiful, very light honey, and brought a jar to show to the members.


–According to our July statistics,  there are now 127 colonies within our Club, 46 of which are new, and 44 colonies have been lost since September 2014.

–Tom Allen followed up with Melissa Hammersma (the associate producer with South Dakota Public Broadcasting who is planning to produce a video segment about honey in South Dakota) about scheduling her visit to Rapid City.  She has agreed to come to the Honey Bee Appreciation Day we are co-hosting at the Game, Fish & Parks Outdoor campus on Saturday, August 22, 2015.  She plans to record some video of that event. Tom also encouraged Melissa to contact Allison Marsland, the Assistant City Attorney who worked closely with our Club, and was very helpful in getting the Rapid City Bee Ordinance written and passed.

–Tom Allen and other members are getting ready for the Honey Bee Appreciation Day (details above). It will be from 10am to 4pm, and they are not sure what all will be covered, but will have bee boxes, beekeeping tools, and packets of Burpee wild flowers.

–Tom Allen announced the next Ohio State webinar is on Wednesday, August 19, 2015, at 7:00 AM Mountain time. The subject is “Royal Jelly & Queen Development–A Chemical Perspective”.

All webinars are free, and registration is not required. Webinars run one hour from 9:00AM to 10:00AM Eastern time.

To join the webinar, follow the link below and log in as a guest at about 6:55 the day of the event:

All webinars are recorded and archived on their Bee Lab website. so if you miss the original broadcast, you can still see any of the webinars.


–Holly Jean Montoya, for the Black Hills Unity Concert, contacted our club asking if we would donate some honey to their volunteer kitchen, where they feed the honored guests, performers, elders, and volunteers. The concert will be held August 28-30, 2015, at Elk Creek Resort in Piedmont, SD. Bob Asheim is planning to donate 10 lbs of bottled honey.  Holly Jean Montoya can be contacted at (858) 287-0476.

–The Main Street Square Great Downtown Pumpkin Festival will be held on Saturday, September 26, 2015, from 9am to 4pm in Rapid City. They have requested that our club members come and sell honey. Bob has vendor applications for anyone who is interested.

–October 1-3, 2015, the Colorado Beekeepers Association is hosting the Western Apicultural Society conference in Boulder Colorado. There are going to be fantastic speakers, and admission is free. For more information, contact Tom Allen.

–The 2nd Annual “Made in South Dakota” event (formerly known as ‘Taste of South Dakota) will be held on Saturday, October 10th, 2015 from 12 to 6 pm at Main Street Square in Rapid City.  A sign-up sheet and vendor applications were available at tonight’s meeting, and will be available at our September meeting. Tom Allen, Jerry Owens, and Bob Tolman participated in this last year. If any members are interested in participating as a vendor at this event, talk to these members.

–The South Dakota Dakota Specialty Producers Association (SDSPA) will be holding a Local Foods Conference in November 2015, in Deadwood. Our Wannabee Hobby Beekeepers Club is invited to have a table at the event.

–Jerry Owens reported that he got a call from North Carolina asking about our Rapid City bee ordinance.


Tonight’s program entitled “Harvesting Tilford Gold” was presented by Bill and Joan Clements. They demonstrated the methods they use for processing their honey.

Picture 1:  Bill demonstrates using a de-capping fork to remove the wax cappings. The hand cranked extractor is shown in the foreground.


Picture 2: Members tried their hand at using a de-capping fork. The yellow frame holder that fits on the bucket is an extremely handy piece of equipment, and can be bought at most places that have bee supplies.


Picture 3:  –Shown here are buckets with fitted valves, but If you don’t have one of these, you can cut a hole in a food-grade plastic bucket, let the honey run out, then tape it up and use it again for another batch.


Pictures 4 and 5:  Picture 4 shows a frame of honey after removing the cappings with a de-capping fork, ready to go into the extractor. Bill also demonstrated how to use thread to slice off the cappings, and picture 5 shows a frame of honey after this method is used.

picture4 picture5

Picture 6:  THE REWARD:  Honey flowing out of the extractor.


Picture 7:  Guest Melissa Arias samples some of the honey.


Picture 8:  Joan holds up a jar of their beautiful Tilford Gold.


The time the meeting adjourned was not recorded.

Minutes submitted by Jan Snedigar, Secretary

Disclaimer:  If I have misquoted you, misnamed you, didn’t quote you, didn’t name you, or otherwise made mistakes in these meeting minutes, I apologize. Please feel free to send me the corrections and I will correct/publish them in the meeting minutes on the web site.  Send to



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Secretary - Wannabee Hobby Beekeepers club
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