Richard and Carole Beauchamp told us about “The Secret Life of Bees” this morning, sharing details of the mating, reproduction, division of labor, lifecycle, and communication patterns of the honeybees that are so important to the pollenation and replication of our food supply. The solitary queen lays eggs every 30 seconds or is replaced by a “newer model” and this is her only job. “Nurses” take care of the eggs and clean the hive, “harvesters” retrieve located pollen and “spit” it into the comb, “guards” protect the hive from intruders, spies, and thieves, “flappers” regulate temperature and humidity levels in the hive (82 degrees in winter, 92 when the egg-laying season starts in January), and “undertakers” clean the hive of bodies of deceased organisms. In their short 41-day lifespan, bees manage to locate raw pollen, gather and transport it, store and preserve it for themselves (and us) in a highly complex operation and with a unique and effective communication system. It is no wonder that they literally mate “on the fly”! Dick and Carole are also “swarmers”, certified to remove and relocate swarms of bees that may have established themselves in problematic places (homes, hospitals, etc.).

President Phil Holmblade asked Bill Hentgen and Jack Proffitt to lead the 18 attendees in the Pledge of Allegiance and prayer, respectively, after which Bill reviewed upcoming downtown events and Greg Hilliker announced some volunteer opportunities. Bill also announced the sponsorship of an “Optimist Club” seat at the remodeled Capitol Theater, and Greg Hilliker fined him for not telling the Club where the seat is for the upcoming events. Ken Cullen proposed a fine against “King” Jeff Dennings for failing to repair his Crown, but the King is obviously insulated from this. John Losinski proposed fines against Ron Ballard for not paying attention and not having a dime for his fines, Jim Reigle paid a fine for wearing “Bill Hentgen’s shirt”, Carole Dennings paid a fine because her new job is going to keep us from assessing her any more, and Kevin Wainwright paid a fine for not having “50/50” tickets to sell. John Losinski discussed proposed “5K Raffle” considerations with the other members present. There will be no meeting next week because Valley Breakfast and Bistro will be closed for the “4th of July” holiday.

Until next time, “Promise Yourself…”