54 Fairmount Avenue
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The Chatham Community Beekeeping Club provides an opportunity for those interested in learning about beekeeping and about our community bee yard. No prior beekeeping experience is required to attend the meeting. The club maintains one or more “cooperative” hives that are tended by all club members and provide a great learning experience.
The Chatham Community Beekeeping Club is the result of a collaboration between Former Mayor Bruce A. Harris and local beekeepers Albert and Valerie Tomaro. Mr. Harris had long been interested in finding a way people could help address the catastrophe facing honey bees, whose pollinating activities contribute to 1/3 of our food supply. He met the Tomaros at Chatham’s Green Fair in September of 2013, and asked if they would help form a beekeepers club for those who were interested in becoming beekeepers but did not want to have their own hive. They agreed, and in February 2014 a dozen people attended an organizational meeting. They agreed to establish two co-op hives (i.e. members would share in hive ownership), and other persons expressed an interest in locating their own hives at the garden site, which is on the Borough’s conservation lands east of River Road. Currently there are about 15 hives, most of which are owned by individual Club members.
The Club provides a great way for those interested to get an introduction to beekeeping by working on the co-op hives with Club members, and by assisting those Club members who have their own hives with beekeeping activities. Most Club members eventually take a formal beekeeping course (Rutgers and some chapters of the New Jersey Beekeepers Association offer courses), which goes well with the hands-on experience gained at the bee yard. In addition, many members also belong to the New Jersey Beekeepers Association, which holds regular meetings, educational sessions and conferences. For more information visit its website: www.njbeekeepers.org
Since beekeeping activities depend on the weather, the Club does not have a regular meeting schedule. If you are interested in getting involved, please send an email to