- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
Amina Harris, director of the UC Davis Honey and Pollination Center, has organized a fantastic group of speakers for the UC Davis Speakers' Stage at the California Honey Festival, set Saturday, May 6 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in downtown Woodland. The event is free and family friendly.
Harris, who co-founded the California Honey Festival in 2017, is an expert on all things honey. And she knows her bees. She's the co-owner of Z Food Specialty and The HIVE, Woodland.
Harris founded the Honey and Pollination Center in 2012 and plans to retire at the end of June. Don't expert her to retire, however, from the Apis mellifera world!
The UC Davis Speakers' Stage will be just west of First Street, Harris related. It will be a'buzzing.
One of the speakers is Sanmu "Samtso" Caoji of Tibet, China, a 2022-23 Hubert Humphrey Fellow at UC Davis. She's the founder of the Shangri-la Gyalthang Academy, and CEO of the Cultural Information Consulting Company.
Caoji will speak at 2:30 on "Empowering Women to Become Beekeepers and Bread Winners for Their Families While Keeping Bees in the Wild." Read her biography here.
What's the Humphrey Fellowship? President Jimmy Carter established it in 1978 to honor the late Hubert Humphrey (1911-1978), vice president under the Lyndon Johnson administration. The fellowship program "brings accomplished mid-career professionals from countries with developing and emerging economies to the United States for professional and leadership development," according to UC Davis Global Affairs.
The speakers will deliver 20 to 30-minute talks, starting at 10:30 a.m.
10:30 a.m.: Pollination ecologist and professor Neal Williams, UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, who will discuss "Native Bees and their Conservation"
11 a.m.: Kitty Bolte, GATEways horticulturist, UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden, "Planting Your Garden to be a Welcoming Space for Pollinators"
12 noon: Amina Harris, director of the UC Davis Honey and Pollination Center, and co-owner of Z Food Specialty and The HIVE, Woodland, "Let's Learn to Taste Honey."
1 p.m.: Wendy Mather, co-program manager of the California Master Beekeeper Program (CAMPB), "So, You Want to Be a Beekeeper?"
1:30 p.m.: Jean-Philippe Marelli, senior director of Integrated Pest Management for Mars Wrigley Confectionery (also a journey level master beekeeper and Melipona beekeeper in Brazil), "Stingless Bees: The Amazing World of Melipona Bees"
2 p.m.: Cooperative Extension apiculturist/associate professor Elina Lastro Niño of Entomology and Nematology, and director of the California Master Beekeeper Program (CAMPB), "What Our Bee Research Is Teaching Us."
2:30 p.m.: Sanmu "Samtso" Caoji, a 2022-23 Hubert Humphrey fellow, and founder of the Shangri-la Gyalthang Academy, and CEO of the Cultural Information Consulting Company, "Empowering Women to Become Beekeepers and Bread Winners for Their Families While Keeping Bees in the Wild"
3 p.m.: Rachel Davis, coordinator of Bee City USA Woodland and chair of Bee Campus USA UC Davis (and GATEways Horticulturist for the UC Davis Arboretum and Public Garden), "Woodland Is a Bee City; UC Davis Is a Bee City--What This Means to Our Communities"
UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology communications specialist Kathy Keatley Garvey will provide a background slide show of images of honey bees and native bees.
The UC Davis-based California Master Beekeeper Program, founded in 2016 by Niño, provides a program of learning, teaching, research, and public service. They offer comprehensive, science-based information about honey bees and honey bee health. Since 2016, the organization has donated 32,000 hours of volunteer time and served 186,630 individuals in education, outreach and beekeeping mentorship. Read more about their classes and their work on their website.
Following the California Honey Festival, an after-party will be held from 5 to 9 p.m. at The HIVE Tasting Room and Kitchen, 1221 Harter Ave., Woodland. It will feature pollinator-inspired food, drinks, and dancing to the music of Joy and Madness, an 8-piece soul and funk group. Tickets are $20 and will benefit the California Master Beekeeper Program. "Each ticket includes entry to win a bountiful Yolo County food and drink basket (value $500)," Harris said. More information is on this website.