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November 09, 2015

All Abuzz for the Seeds and the Bees!

ArtStarts and Lori Weidenhammer

Halloween weekend is usually all about eating sweet candy (and maybe feeling delightfully frighented). But families who came out to artist and beekeeper Lori Weidenhammer's Seeds for Bees! workshops over the weekend discovered something else pretty sweet...

Taking lessons from Winnie the Pooh, we pretty much know that honeybees are responsible for the delicious honey on our toast and that we'd better watch out for stingers (oh, bother). But did you know there are over 20,000 different kinds of bees? And that over 70% of their hives are actually underground not high up in trees? Or that most bees can't sting?

Kids and their parents alike got the chance to learn a bit about bees as Lori went from table to table spreading her knowledge like pollen from flower to flower. The group also learned some fascinating facts about the ecosystem between seeds and bees.

The beautiful spread on each table included seeds from plants such as fennel, radish, buckwheat and anise, as well as rubber stamps, washi tape, markers and plenty of cards and envelopes to write a thoughtful thank you card for the bees.

At each 45-minute workshop eager children were full of questions for Lori such as, "Why are there no King bees?" and "Why do sweat bees like sweat?" (Turns out, there are minerals in our sweat).

By the end of the day, plenty of envelopes were sent home with smiling children, ready to plant seeds in their own gardens, Grandma's garden or the community garden. Each envelope was full to bursting with seeds that will one day blossom into beautiful wildflowers and vegetables that will attract more bees and provide them new homes and a promote a healthy ecosystem.

Feedback for this workshop was wonderful! Here are a few comments from the guest book:

"I love the bee art."

"We were impressed to learn so many new facts about bees. For example, some kinds of bees drink sweat to get minerals. It is cool to get this opportunity for free! Knowledge shared will be passed on. Thank you!"

"Coming to ArtStarts in my community is always the highlight of the weekend. We love bees! Thank you for all the opportunities you offer our families — we are tremendously grateful!"

Want to learn more about the importance of bees? Read the Vancouver Courier's coverage of Seeds for Bees! in which they interview Lori Weidenhammer about why savings the bees is so important.

"It’s an untold story. People know about saving the rainforest, but they don't know there's very little natural Prairie left and those wildflowers are what support a lot of native bumblebees."

Read the full article in the Vancouver Courier.

We would also like to thank the Wright Farm in Richmond for donating a pile of pumpkins! Families who came to the ArtStarts Gallery on Halloween day decorated their own mini pumpkins to bring home.

Check out lots more photos on Facebook
from ArtStarts on Saturdays and
from ArtStarts at River Market.

We have more free family events coming up soon! Join us at ArtStarts on Saturdays in Vancouver on Saturday, November 28, 2015 and at ArtStarts at River Market in New Westminster on Sunday, November 29, 2015 for Elements with Metaphor. Metaphor is a crew of hip-hop artists who build community empowerment and social justice. Using music and participatory games to explore themes of inclusion, exclusion, bullying and acceptance, the workshops is suitable for all ages and will be sure to get everyone on their feet and dancing! Sessions start at 11am and 1pm. As always, admission is free! See you there!

Thanks to Boeing for their generous support of the ArtStarts on Saturdays series.

Thanks to Westminster Savings and River Market for their generous support of the ArtStarts at River Market series.


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