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Thursday, September 26, 2019

Rec Center bees provide sweet treat to community

Rec Center bees provide sweet treat to community

What’s the buzz? It was a honey harvesting party at West View Recreation Center on Thursday, Sept. 12!

“The Bee Club meets monthly at West View and this was the first time honey was extracted from the beehive right outside the atrium window,” said Guest Relations Clerk Molina Vaughn.

Gregg McMahan of Rocky Mountain Bee removed the bees the night before from the honey super. A honey super is a managed beehive and consists of a box in which several frames are hung. Bees collect nectar and store it in honeycombs on the frames.

Members of the Westminster Bee Club, including Robert Clearwater, helped bring the honey super into the rec center lobby and remove the frames. The frames were then placed into a box where a capping scratcher was used to remove the beeswax capping on both sides of the frame and free the honey.

Several frames were then placed into an extractor that was set up in the recreation center’s lobby. The extractor spins so the honey gets pushed outwards via centrifugal force and then drips down into a bucket. After a few spins, the extractor spins in the opposite direction to extract honey from the other side of the frames.

The honey in the bucket is then filtered to remove any remaining beeswax.

“They bottled the honey and held a lottery to see who would get to take them home,” said Vaughn. “But I think everyone there went home with some very organic honey.”

McMahan and the Westminster Bee Club then put new frames back in the honey super, and the bees, so they can build new honeycombs and make more honey!

Residents can visit West View Recreation Center to view the honey super beehive and see the bees in action.

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