4/13/17 Meeting: ‘What’s the Buzz with Bees?’

screen-shot-2016-10-16-at-7-10-54-pmMeeting at Quigley’s Restaurant
593 Columbia Turnpike
East Greenbush, NY
April 13, 2017

Members Attending (18): Debbie Rodriguez, Murray Forth, Pat Bailey, Roberto Martinez, Bill Dowd, Jim Leyhane, Terry Brewer, Geoff Brewer, Julius Frankel, Dick Drumm, Becky Raymond, Peter  Brown, Debbie Brown, Phil Kellerman, Carol Orvis, Monika Annis, Ron Annis, Charlie Foote.

Guests (2): Bob Bode, Leonardo Gonzalez.

PROGRAM: “What’s the Buzz With Bees?”

Debbie Brown making her presentation on the world of bees.

Debbie Brown offered a presentation called “What’s the Buzz About Bees?” based on a program she created for the Fort Orange Garden Club.

Tracing the history of bees and their importance to the human race, she spoke about their pervasive in such areas as mythology (Melissa, the Bee Goddess, for example) and art, and the many uses of the honey they produce — in cooking, cosmetics, beverages, nutrition, medicine, plant pollination, etc. Among its other properties, Debbie said, honey keeps virtually forever. Containers of it have been found in ancient Egyptian tombs.

She explained the life cycles and duties to the swarm of the queen, the drones, and the workers. And, she addressed the widespread problem of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) which began being noticed around 2005-06, showing slides of the interior of both healthy and collapsed hives. Research has revealed that CCD is caused by one or more of a variety of factors, such as pesticides, mite infections, malnutrition, various pathogens, loss of habitat, and some beekeeping practices such as moving hives too often which puts great stress on the bees.

Debbie noted that it is possible to rent bees to pollinate orchards when the resident bees leave or die off. She cited as an example Indian Ladder Farms in Albany County where rented bees from a Schoharie County bee farm were used to handle the pollination needs of the large commercial orchard.

Debbie advocates creating a bee-friendly environment. Some things to consider are sun exposure, open spaces, multiple large clusters of flowers, having a variety of species and native varieties of plants, and avoiding GMO (genetically modified organism) products and pesticides.

She outlined the various research and legislative actions relating to CCD: the Protection From Pesticides Act in  2013; banning GMOs from wildlife refuge area in 2014; the Pollinator Protection  Act in 2016.

Business & Announcements

WELCOME — President Debbie Rodriguez greeted attendees and welcomed Lorenzo Gonzalez, an Eagle Scout candidate from Troop 41, which our club  supports.

ADG VISIT — Jack Faddegon, Assistant District Governor for our Area 8, will visit the club next Thursday to explain a multi-club work project he is creating for the Shaker Heritage Society site, a hands-on work day in May for which we will need volunteers from the club.

EASTER BASKET PROJECT — The final count on baskets for needy kids through the family assistance organization Circles of Mercy was overwhelming, literally. Details and photos are available on our website.

PROGRAM AD — The club will take a quarter-page ad in the program for next month’s District Conference in Lake George. Debbie R. said she has asked Bill Dowd to design the ad.

Screen Shot 2017-04-14 at 2.06.38 PM

PLAYGROUND PROJECT — Guest Leonardo Gonzales described his Eagle Scout project, an  outdoor training and exercise station in the Schodack Town Park. His effort will lay the groundwork for the effort, with other Scouts expanding the resource year-to-year, eventually covering an approximately 100 square foot area. The project is based on a Viking playground design created in Sweden. Club support was recognized by Ron Annis who made a light-hearted presentation (above) of a Viking sword to Leonardo, shield to Jim Leyhane, and princess crown to Monika Annis. The playground project is being developed in conjunction with the our sister Rotary Club in Gefle, Sweden, Monika’s hometown.

POLIO HISTORY VIDEO — The polio history video project, a joint effort by the club, CASDA, the UAlbany School of Public Health, and District 7190, is into the final editing stage. It will be shown at the District Conference at about 9:30 a.m. Saturday, May.

ROTARY HOME COOKING — Murray and Maggie Forth will host a surf-and-turf dinner at their home at 6 p.m. Saturday, May 20. Twelve guests can be accommodated, with reservations accepted on a first come-first served basis.

RECYCLING DAY — Our next electronic recycling/paper shredding day is scheduled for 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 29. It is co-sponsored by club member A.J. Amato and the club itself. An event flyer can be copied from the club  website or Facebook page. Next week, we will call for volunteers to staff the event.

Bob Baude
Artist Bob Bode

LOCAL HEROES PORTRAITS — Roberto Martinez introduced Bob Bode, a local artist whose work can be seen on  display in the East Greenbush Town Hall and elsewhere. Bob is creating a series of paintings of local volunteers to be displayed at the East Greenbush Public Library. He works from photos taken of the subjects. Jim Leyhane last week was chosen as the Rotarian to be included in the project.

COOKING @ RONALD McDONALD HOUSE — The volunteer ranks have been filled for two club cooking efforts at the Ronald McDonald House complex in Albany. Terry Brewer is coordinating a breakfast service for Saturday, April 22, and Bill Dowd is coordinating a dinner service for Wednesday, May 31.

BALLPARK PICNIC DATE — Terry Brewer said he has reserved 45 tickets for our annual outing at the Bruno Stadium picnic pavilion and ValleyCats baseball game. The date is Thursday, July 27. He also said he is working to get Rotarians from other clubs to attend, as was the case last summer.

GIFT OF LIFE — Jim Leyhane announced that a child from Bolivia will be admitted this month to Albany Medical Center for lifesaving pediatric cardiac surgery supported by the District 7190 Gift of Life organization.

NEXT MEETINGS — We have two meetings scheduled for next Thursday, April 20. At the 6:15 p.m. dinner meeting, Dr. Edward Hannan, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, UAlbany School of Public Health, will speak on cardiology outcomes. At the 7 a.m. breakfast meeting at the Greenbush YMCA, Phil Kellerman will speak on immigration.

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