What's It Like?
Held on the grounds of Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, 1100 S Calhoun St, Fort Wayne, IN 46802. > Map Directions Surrounded by the beautiful gardens, Bees and Brew is held inside and outside the Conservatory, which creates the perfect environment for you to be immersed with the natural surroundings while having a relaxing evening all without traveling too far from home.
Fun, Relaxing & Unique Hands-on Activities!
- Sip honey wine or a unique honey beer, brewed locally by Hoppy Gnome out of your own Southwest Honey Co. glass. (take glass as a souvenir)
- Try honey based hors d’oeuvres.
- Suit up for a personalized beekeeping experience with live beehives.
- Go on a unique tour of the Botanical Conservatory’s gardens.
- Sample raw local honey.
- Make DIY beeswax candles (to take home & enjoy).
- Q & A with beekeepers.
- View painted hives and Meet & Greet the six local artists who volunteered their creative talents to each paint a beehive in support of the cause.
- Learn more about the honey bee through our fun & interactive presentation!
- Learn about how you can help the honey bees and other pollinators!
Bees & Brew has been designed by our on-staff educator Megan Ryan, who has her Master’s Degree in Education and a passion for pollinators. This evening comes complete with experienced educators and knowledgeable volunteers which allows each guest to have an intimate, fun and enjoyable evening.
Educational Impact & Partners Of Our Program
The overall mission of the ‘Bees & Brew’ evening is to open the minds of adults in the community with a fun and interactive experience that connects them with the natural environment all while relaxing with friends and enjoying a honey-based adult beverage. Ideas we will explore include the intricacies of the beehive, the role of pollinators in our ecosystem, and the importance of conservation minded thinking and living, as well as the benefits of the byproducts of a beehive, such as beeswax.
Proceeds go towards supporting our mission of creating sustainable habitats for pollinators, promoting awareness of their population decline and educating the public on ways they can help through pollinator education programs in the community. Since Southwest Honey Co. began their efforts just two years ago, we’ve personally touched the lives of over 1,600 children and adults through our unique educational programs, and currently care for 50 hives in sustainable areas including organic farms and naturally preserved properties around Fort Wayne.
Our program and your experience has been brought to life with the assistance of SARE (Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education), Betterbee, Wheeler’s Bees (Ossian, IN), ACRES Land Trust, organic farms, and other local, regional and national organizations. We are members of the American Beekeeping Federation, Beekeepers of Indiana Association and Northeastern Indiana Beekeepers Association. Our partnership with all of these organizations includes sharing information and ideas for educating the public to help pollinators.
Featuring Local Artist's Hives
Check back after May 25 to view all of the hives, artist bios and more, right here on southwesthoney.com!
Since this is an extra special ‘Bees & Brew,’ Southwest Honey Co. has partnered with local artists to bring even more unique and meaningful elements to the evening. Six Fort Wayne artists have volunteered their creative talents to each paint a beehive in support of the cause. Guests will have the opportunity to view the painted hives, meet and greet with the artists, and bid on ‘adopting’ each hive for a year in support of local pollinator education. Each ‘adopted’ hive will be kept in one of Southwest Honey Co.’s sustainable apiaries and comes with some sweet perks for the ‘adopter.’
The hives will be used as a showpiece and discussion point to help educate the community about declining pollinator populations, why pollinators are important, as well as what the average person can do to help.
Thank you to our artists:
- Jarrod Tobias
- Theopolis Smith (Phresh Laundry)
- Lissa Brown (Tiny Clementine)
- Alex Hall
- Frank Louis Allen
- Alyssa Deck
What Should I Wear?
- Appropriate clothing for the outdoors
- If you will be visiting the apiary, please wear closed toed shoes
- We recommend long pants
What Should I Bring?
- Please bring your photo ID (we will be unable to serve alcohol to anyone without a valid ID)
- An open mind, ready to learn and have fun!
- We will be working with beeswax, honey, and bees- if you are allergic to any of these, please bring an epi-pen with you
Can I Buy Local Honey?
- Yes, there will be honey bottles and honey sticks available for purchase, as well as other items such as candles, t-shirts, bumper stickers and more!
Can I Buy Additional Alcohol?
- No, there will be a 2 drink limit for each guest.
When Should I Arrive?
- We ask that you arrive approximately 10 minutes before Bees & Brew begins. This will allow for check-in time and registration.
- There will be restroom facilities available.
What Happens If There Is Inclement Weather?
- We will cross our fingers that this does not happen, but as we operate outdoors, inclement weather is a possibility. Before and throughout the duration of Bees & Brew, our educators will be monitoring the weather and other factors that may cause the event to be cancelled. In any such case, each registrant will be emailed and retain southwesthoney.com online credit or have fees returned.
Can Someone Under The Age Of 21 Attend Bees And Brew?
- Sorry! This is a 21+ event only. Anyone under the age of 21 is unable to attend.
Does I Need A Signed Waiver?
- Yes! Each participant must have a signed waiver in order to participate in our program.
How Long Will Bees And Brew Last?
- We wish we had all the time in the world but… Bees & Brew will last approximately 120 minutes
When Should I Pay For My Tickets?
- We ask that you pay online at the time of registration. Unfortunately, we cannot accept walk-up registrations.
What Happens If I Need To Cancel?
- Please contact us via phone Megan (260)-609-2897 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
- We ask for a 2 week notice prior to the scheduled event in order to guarantee a full refund.
Why Is Education About Honey Bees And Pollinators So Important?
- Honey bees are declining at an alarming rate- if this issue is left unaddressed, it could drastically change our world’s ecosystem, agriculture, and food production.
- Honey bees and other pollinators may be small, but they are mighty- we have a honey bee to thank for 1 out of every 3 bites of food we eat! We believe that education is the key! The more people who become aware of ways they can help pollinators, the better off our environment will be.
- Click Here for more information about our educational / organization philosophies and mission.
Where Does The Event Take Place?
- Bees and Brew takes place at the beautiful Foellinger-Freimann Botanical Conservatory, 1100 S Calhoun St, Fort Wayne, IN 46802. (View Map).
- You will find a volunteer ready to assist you at the main entrance.
- Parking can be found nearby. All parking fees should be waived for this event.
Whom Do I Contact If I Have Questions?
- Megan Ryan (260) 609-2897
We have two on-site experienced educators and many knowledgeable volunteers who will be helping make the evening a fun experience! Before and throughout the duration of the event, our educators will be monitoring the weather and other factors that may cause the event to be cancelled. In any such case, each registrant will be emailed and retain southwesthoney.com online credit or have fees returned.
Bees & Brew will be held outside, as such there is an inherent risk associated with any outdoor activity.
As a part of our event, we require all participants to complete our liability waiver. > Click For Sample
- Cold water will be kept on-site, especially for hot days.
- We will have a sealed & locked observation hive containing live bees as a part of our evening.
- The experience includes an optional tour of the apiaries and a chance to see into the hives.
- Unpasteurized honey will be tasted by participants. Please be aware if you have any honey allergies.
- At least one on-site educator is CPR certified by the American Heart Association and First Aid certified.
- Although alcohol is paired with relaxation and our event, unruly guests, as a result of alcohol consumption, will be escorted from the property immediately.
Bees and Brew is designed to be safe so our participants have a fantastic experience! If you have any concerns about safety, please feel free to contact our lead educator and event coordinator, Megan Ryan (260) 609-2897.