The Southeastern Michigan Beekeepers' Association (SEMBA) will hold its 76th Annual Beekeeping Conference on Saturday, March 15, 2014 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. in the VisTaTech Center at Schoolcraft College, 18600 Haggerty Road, Livonia, MI.

The keynote speaker will be Clarence Collison, PhD., retired Professor and Head of Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology at Mississippi State University. Dr. Collison received his PhD in Entomology from Michigan State University. He will be making three morning presentations that focus on honey, namely, Examining Combs - What Do They Tell You?, Honey Bee Management For Maximum Honey Production, and Honey Basics From Flower To Jar. Dr. Collison, a native of Michigan, maintains his interests in beekeeping, continuing to lecture and write monthly articles for Bee Culture magazine.

Concurrent afternoon sessions are designed for all beekeepers: novice, experienced, and those seeking an understanding of the honeybee. There will be several sessions including a variety of practical beekeeping management practices taught by experienced beekeepers including "Queen Rearing", "Microscopic Bee Physiology" , Common Bee Enemies and Defenses, and beekeeping practices in China and the Ukraine. A specific tract of workshops will be offered for beginners that will explore Selecting Equipment and Beekeeping Essentials. As well as a product tract offering a presentation on mead by Ken Schramm, author of The Compleat Meadmaker, among other bee products such as beeswax candles and cut comb honey.

Individuals will have an opportunity to enroll in a "hands-on" beginning beekeeping course to be held at Tollgate, a Michigan State University demonstration farm in Novi, MI. Class begins in early spring on through the summer of 2014. An advanced course will be offered if there is sufficient enrollment. Check the posting at www.sembabees.org/education for the complete class agenda and syllabus (when it is available).

A complete assortment of beekeeping books, manuals and related topics will be on display and available for purchase. Suppliers will be offering the latest in apitherapy information, beekeeping crafts and beekeeping equipment. As a bonus, select suppliers will be accepting prepaid orders for delivery at the conference. Go to our website for their listings. In addition, complimentary attendee door prizes will be awarded throughout the day.

Registration for the educational event is $15.00 for SEMBA members and $20.00 for non-members. Children under 18 accompanied by a registered member are free. Membership information is available at www.sembabees.org . For lunch, plan to bring a brown bag lunch or visit one of the area's fine restaurants.

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