Beekeeper conference returning to Clanton

Published 10:56 am Monday, September 18, 2017

By JOYANNA LOVE/Senior Staff Writer

The Alabama Beekeepers Association’s annual fall Conference returns to the Clanton Conference and Performing Arts Center on Sept. 22 and 23.

The conference brings together novice and experienced beekeepers as well as those wanting to learn more about the industry before starting.

“We have expanded the program. Actually, in the two days, we are going to have 44 hours of instruction over 11 periods, so that any attendees have four choices each session as to the topics and the speakers,” Bill Evans of Jemison, vice president of the

Alabama Beekeepers Association, said.

More than 400 people attend the conference each year.

Participants can register online at until the day before the event. The conference is $55 and meals are included.

The conference will feature guest speakers in the auditorium and classroom session by Alabama Beekeepers. Each day’s presentations begin at 8 a.m. A complete schedule is available on the association website.

Topics range from caring for a hive to making products from honey.

“The programs are designed to educate, inform and try to improve the skill of the 400 beekeepers that will be sitting in the audience,” Evans said.

Some presentations are also geared toward those who are just starting a hive.

This year will also feature an open hive demonstration.

“People who haven’t experienced it, they can go outside and watch a beekeeper get into a hive,” Evans said.

There will be 17 vendors at the event this year.

Evans said the vendors sell “everything imaginable” that is related to bees, including equipment for starting a hive, beauty products and honey.

During the conference opening ceremony, the “Youth in Beekeeping Award” will be presented to Madison Chandler of Billingsley. The award is presented based on an essay contest.

According to an ABA press release, “Madison’s essay showed much research about

honey bee biology, hive products and the role honeybees play in the food chain.”

Evans said he enjoys the conference because it brings together beekeepers from all over the state.

This is the fourth year for the event to be held in Clanton.