MCBA Runs on VOLUNTEERISM!
There are many opportunities to participate.
MCBA OUTREACH - All Year!
An important goal of MCBA is educating non-beekeepers about honey bees; their important environmental role, their fascinating hive activities, their passive demeanor, and even their wide ranging honey flavors.
So, MCBA volunteers give honey bee presentations to schools, clubs, and businesses, and set up and operate honey bee exhibits at various events.
Presentations to preschoolers have included studying bee anatomy using MCBA's big plastic honey bee model, while presentations to garden and environmental clubs Clubs might field audience questions about plantings and practices to help pollinators. We even had a club member field questions about bees after a live performance of the play “Humble Boy”. Every year, Montgomery County’s 5th grade science curriculum includes investigating a local environmental issue and many classes choose the "decline of honey bees" and request MCBA beekeepers come in to explain.
Examples: MCBA members have manned booths at:
- Ft. Mead’s Earth Day Celebration
- The Master Gardener Grow It, Eat It Spring Open House
- GreenFest of Montgomery County
Individual presentations have included:
- Career Day at Germantown Elementary School
- Children in the Shoe preschool
- 5th graders of Ashburton Elementary school
- Cashell Elementary School's PTA Community Fair
- Weil, Gotshall & Manges LLP lunch-lecture
- Discovery Channel
The club offers many support materials to our volunteer speakers, including a complete PowerPoint presentation, posters, laminated pictures, samples of pollen, propolis, and honeycomb to pass around, and two kinds of demonstration hives: one filled with real pictures of bees, and a glass observation hive you can fill with live bees!
If you are an MCBA member who likes to talk about bees, email pphepp(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign)aol.com to be notified of upcoming Outreach Opportunities.
If you are an MCBA member, you can preview the support materials. Click Here.
If you want an MCBA beekeeper to speak to your group, Click Here.
Expand our Website
There are many volunteer opportunities to expand the usefulness of our website, and you do not need technical skills.
Here are some examples, and all additional ideas are welcome:
- Create a 'Cliff's notes' of bee books, sharing the most interesting/useful pearls of wisdom
- Compile a list of tips and tricks for beekeepers
- Collect photos, charts, etc. that illustrate important topics like bee diseases, bee anatomy, honey processing, etc.
- Organize a recipe section for hive products like lip balm, fondant, creamed honey, etc.
- Create a how-to segment
- Research an important honey bee topic and create an article
- Curate a best-of-the-best list of instructional web-videos, e.g. demonstrations of Mite Alcohol Wash, Lifecycle of Bees, etc.
- If you know how to use the WordPress platform, there are a ton of ways you can help our webmaster
To help with the MCBA WEBSITE, contact MCBAstaff(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign)gmail.com">Phil Frank
Help Publish our Monthly Newsletter, The Honeypot
Help once, occasionally, or on a regular basis
- Write bios & topics to be covered by upcoming speakers so members know what to expect at the next MCBA Monthly meeting
- Write summaries of previous speaker presentations
- Coordinate with Editor to write feature articles relevant to our members
- Create a bee-themed comic strip
- Collect/curate bee-themed humor
- Inform membership of upcoming events, deadlines, time-sensitive beekeeping duties
- Create new article ideas -- write or find a volunteer to write them
- Organize contributing writers
- Edit articles submitted by contributors
- Help contributors meet deadlines
- Post articles and images to MCBA site
Montgomery County Fair
The Club has three volunteer activities at the Fair, which is located at 501 Perry Parkway, Gaithersburg, MD 20877.
- Observation Hive 'Tour Guide'
- Local Honey Sales
- Live Beehive Demonstrations inside a screened in Gazebo
All are fun and you are welcome to sign up for multiple events. You can even enlist a friend to join you for your shift. Each volunteer receives a free Fair pass for the day they volunteer. A month before the County Fair, we will post an online sign-up sheet with available events, days, and hours.
If you have questions now, email jaismick1(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign)verizon.net">Maureen Jais-Mick
Introduce visitors to the fascinating world of bees. Explain how the colony is organized, point out cells with honey/larvae/pollen/ eggs, regale them with bee facts (How much honey does a single bee produce in its entire lifetime? How long does the queen live? How many eggs can she lay in one day? How can you tell the difference between males and females?) Answer their many questions with first hand knowledge. Your enthusiasm to keep bees safe will be contagious!
We operate our booth to sell honey and other "products of the hive." Any member who'd like to have their own honey sold at our booth must volunteer for at least one 4-hour shift at the Fair - either in our booth or in Old MacDonald's Barn.
Bring your protective gear because this is full frontal beekeeping. Zip yourself into our screened-in tent and open hives right in front of visitors. Wow them with your bravery as you explain the workings of the hive and harvest honey -- decap, spin and bottle.