August 20, 2014

Bee Schools

Annual Bee Schools are sponsored by Local Chapters, Adult Education Programs,  and sometimes in cooperation with the County Extension Service.

These practical courses are a must for beginners and a great chance for intermediate-level beekeepers to update and refresh their skills.

It is important to be sure to sign up with the instructor who is right for you (find out by asking at local bee clubs).

2014 Maine Beekeeping Schools, Classes, Workshops and Seminars

J. Hildreth - President of the Cumberland County Beekeepers Association with a spectacular frame of honey

Jack Hildreth – Instuctor

UMaine Extension Cumberland County Beekeeping Schools for 2013-2014

Beginning Beekeeping Schools:

This is a great opportunity for new beekeepers, prior to their first year of bees, or it can be a great refresher course for beekeepers just now going into their first winter, and even those with a couple of years of experience who want to refresh their skills and knowledge.

Each Beginner Bee course consists of 5 sessions and will be taught by two Master Beekeepers. The fee for each school covers the cost of the textbook and the beekeeper’s reference notebook.

Spring Beginning Beekeeping School 2
Instructors: Peter Richardson & Chris Rogers
6:30-8:30pm, Thursdays, February 13 – March 13, 2014
Class location: UMaine Extension Cumberland County office in Falmouth
Cost: $90 per person (includes book)/$130 for 2 enrollees (includes shared book)
Register online
Mail in registration: 2013 Cumberland Co Beekeeping Enrollment Form (PDF)

Instructor: Erin MacGregor-Forbes, EAS Master Beekeeper, President, Maine State Beekeepers Association.

Instructor: Erin MacGregor-Forbes, EAS Master Beekeeper, Past President, Maine State Beekeepers Association.

Intermediate Beekeeping School – Apiary Management
Apiary Management is geared towards beekeepers with two plus years of experience.  The focus of this class is how to effectively manage an apiary under Maine conditions.
Instructors: Master Beekeepers Jack Hildreth & Erin MacGregor-Forbes
6:30-8:30pm, Wednesdays, January 8 – February 12, 2014
Class location: Portland campus of University of Southern Maine (USM)
Cost: $130 per person (includes book)/$180 for 2 enrollees (includes shared book and materials)
Register online
Mail in registration: 2013 Cumberland Co Beekeeping Enrollment Form (PDF)

Partial scholarships may be available; please contact Justine Denny at 207.781.6099 or 1.800.287.1471 (in Maine only).

If you are a person with a disability and need an accommodation to participate in this program, please call Justine Denny at 207.781.6099 or 1.800.287.1471 (in Maine only). Receiving requests for accommodations at least 10 days before the program provides a reasonable amount of time to meet the request, however all requests will be considered.

Chris Rogers

Chris Rogers

Courses at The Honey Exchange in Portland

For more information:


Classes and Workshops at Bee Pride in Lebanon

For more information:


Classes and Workshops in Top Bar Hive Beekeeping

For more information:


Western Maine Beekeepers Annual Bee School

Registration January 22, 2014 6:00 pm at Region 9 School, Mexico, Maine.
Classes are weekly on Wednesday at 6:30 pm – 11 weeks total.
Cost is $40.00 – including books.
Call or email Carol Cottrill (364-0917 for more information.
No pre-registration is required.

Bee School – at Mt. Blue in Farmington
starting Feb 27 (Thurs) 6 weeks.
Contact Mt Blue Adult Ed for info

Beginning Bee School
Oxford Adult Education, Oxford High School, South Paris
6 week course Tuesday March 4 – April 8, 2014
Instructor: Carol Cottrill


Beginning Bee School in Cornish
This introductory course is designed for those interested in getting started keeping honey   bees and also those who have kept bees for  one or two years. It covers all the basics to get   off to a good start keeping bees and   maintaining them. In addition, the diseases and   and issues that honey bees have suffered   from over the past 20 years will be addressed.   This course includes many hands-on   opportunities for participants. One handbook  will be provided and a recommended companion   book–“The Beekeepers Handbook” by Diana   Samataro and Alphonse Avitable–can be   purchased online.
W, 6:30-8:30 p.m., 6 wks., 1/22/2014 – 2/26/2014
Location: SVHS – Rm. 204
Class on 2/19 only  will take place at the   PTH – Adult learning Center Lab
Instructor: Mark Cooper,  EAS Certified Master  Beekeeper
Cost: $90.00 or $130.00 per couple


Beekeeping for Beginners
Instructor: Peter Cowin
Wednesdays, Feb 5, 12 and 19  6:30 – 8:30
$30    call 862-6422.

The beekeeping for beginners class is designed to stimulate the interest in and answer the questions of those interested in starting beekeeping as a hobby or to help pollinate their crops.  It covers what is needed where to locate bees hives, where to buy them, what it costs and how to care for bees so they survive the winter.  Many join the class because they are aware of the huge importance and decline of honeybees and other pollinators and just want to help.  Learn about the fascinating hobby of beekeeping, pollinate your garden and grow your own honey!

Peter Cowin (aka The Bee Whisperer) is President of the Penobscot County Beekeepers Association and is part of the Maine State Beekeepers Association Swarm Team with a specialization in the removal and safe relocation of honeybee colonies which have become established in the walls of people’s homes and out buildings.  Keeping honeybees on and off since the age of 11, he has grown his hobby into a cottage business known as “Hampden Honey.”

Intermediate Beekeeping
Instructor: Peter Cowin
Tuesdays, March 25, April 1 and 7  6:30-8:30
$40 call 866-4119

Beekeeping for Beginners
Instructor: Peter Cowin
Mondays,  Jan 27, Feb 3 and 10   6:30-8:30
$30 call 992-5522

Intermediate Beekeeping
Instructor: Peter Cowin
Mondays, March 3. 10 and17  6:30-8:30  $40  call 992-5522

Beekeeping for Beginners
Instructor: Peter Cowin
Tuesdays, January 28, Feb 4 and 11
$30  call  667-6499

EAS Master Beekeepers Certification Program

The purpose of the Master Beekeeper certification program is to identify and certify people who have a detailed knowledge of honey bee biology, expertise in the proper practices of beekeeping, and can present this information to the beekeeping and non-beekeeping public in a detailed, accurate, clear and authoritative manner. The goal of this program is to certify that those who are awarded the Master Beekeepers Certificate are competent at a college level in the four areas where they are tested.

The certification program will be conducted in conjunction with the annual EAS Conference. Certification will be coordinated by personnel who are designated by the Master Beekeeper Organization. More information »

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