UBC Okanagan’s “Culture Days” activity will help create homes for bees | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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UBC Okanagan’s “Culture Days” activity will help create homes for bees

Participants at the last Bee Central event of the summer will create homes for mason bees. Unlike honey bees, mason bees are prolific pollinators that often live solitary lives.
Image Credit: Contributed/Bob Lalonde

KELOWNA - Local families are encouraged to make a home for a busy mason bee at UBC’s community art project, Bee Central this Saturday. Mason Bee Homes, a family community art activity, is the final Bee Central event of the summer and it ties in with national Culture Days celebrations taking place across Canada.

Throughout the day, artist Lori Mairs will lead a series of fun, family projects to create homes for mason bees for backyards this upcoming spring. Children can also create bee finger puppets. Mairs will display a mason bee tube sculpture to show mason bee development and participants can help create a pollinator hotel to be installed on the site of a pollinator pasture next spring.

Unlike honeybees, mason bees live solitary lives and find homes in holes created by other insects in trees and wooden structures. Mason bees are known as prolific pollinators and some orchardists create mason bee homes to encourage the bees to their farms to pollinate fruit trees.

Mason Bee Homes is the fourth community art event sponsored by Bee Central; a Community Art Project sponsored by UBC Okanagan and the City of Kelowna.

Bee Central takes place at the historic Brent’s Grist Mill Heritage Park at the corner of Dilworth Road and Leckie Place on Saturday, September 26 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. It is open to the public, with free admission, and people can drop in at any time. This event is being held in conjunction with the Central Okanagan Heritage Society, as it provides information about the Grist Mill and Culture Days in Kelowna.

Lori Mairs is an ecological artist-researcher who lives in a companion-species relationship with the 22 acres that is the Woodhaven Nature Conservancy. Mairs is a sculptor, writer, and photographer, and she has an MFA degree in Visual Arts from UBC Okanagan.

Bee Central is part of a larger plan to introduce and stimulate a ‘buzz’ about bees and the Brent’s Grist Mill Heritage Park, particularly to attract a diverse community to help with the planting, building, and maintaining of a Public Art Pollinator Pasture in Kelowna, explains UBC Assoc. Prof. Nancy Holmes. Bee Central is made possible by a Community Public Art Grant from the City of Kelowna and UBC’s Eco Art Incubator.

What: Mason Bee Homes, free family community art event
Who: Eco Artist Lori Mairs
When: Saturday, September 26, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Where: Brent’s Grist Mill Heritage Park, Kelowna

Culture Days is a national three-day celebration held each September to raise the awareness, accessibility, participation, and engagement of Canadians in the arts and cultural life of their communities. More details can be found at: http://culturedays.ca/en/about-culture-days.

For more information about UBC Okanagan’s Eco Art Incubator projects or to become a volunteer, please contact Holmes at nancy.holmes@ubc.ca, 250-764-9666. More information can be found at: http://blogs.ubc.ca/theecoartincubator/.

News from © iNFOnews, 2015

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