Beginning Beekeeping Class Series
2023 class dates now live!
Wanting to start beekeeping? This is where to start. Whether you are preparing to get honeybees, or you got them last year and need a refresher on the basics, this small group hands-on series is for you. Join us for this three-class series where you will dive into managing backyard beehives with a teacher who runs 35+ backyard apiaries, multiple larger farm apiaries, and 150 total hives, with 10+ years of urban beekeeping experience. The series is limited to 8 students.
The series includes:
- Intro to Honeybees Classroom Day: Saturday, March 11, 1-5pm
- Honey bee lifecycle and biology, beekeeping terminology, and introduction to the beekeeping season.
- Intro to Beekeeping Classroom Day: Saturday, March 18, 1-5pm
- Learn the beekeeping year, and practice an inspection on a mock hive.
- Hands-On Field Class: Saturday, April 1, 1-4pm
- Get in a beehive and walk through a detailed inspection, learning what to look for and how to handle the bees.
- Optional Add-On Field Class
- Practice is key in beekeeping! Add-on attendance at our field day at our hives in Carnation where you will get to work on your inspection skills with many beehives. Student to teacher ratio for the Field Class is 1 teacher for every 4 students.
We keep our class sizes small (maximum 8 people) so that we can give appropriate attention to every student. Our goal is for you to succeed in your beekeeping endeavor, and we believe that the only way to do that is by working in small groups, teaching through both classroom time and hands-on field work with actual bees.
While we strongly recommend participating in both of the field days, we understand that it may not be possible for everyone to get out to Carnation for the second day, and have split this off into its own separate, optional component. But once again, we strongly encourage you to think of the Carnation field day as being necessary, if there is any possible way for you to do it!
Need Bees? Don't forget to purchase one or two nucleus hives on this page with your classes at a discount!
About your instructor:
Peter has been keeping bees in Seattle backyards for over ten years. In that time, he has grown from 1 hive to 200 beehives, managing hives in 35+ backyards in King County and leading a team of beekeepers. A skilled educator, he has developed the Rainy Day Bees apprenticeship program, taught classes for the Puget Sound Beekeepers Association and schools around Seattle, as well as offer 1:1 coaching sessions. Peter loves the science, biology, and mechanics of beekeeping, and sharing everything he learns with others.
- Two 3-4 hour classroom sessions in Shoreline learning about urban beekeeping, bee biology, beekeeping terminology, mechanics of beekeeping, etc. (and most importantly, how to keep your bees alive!)
- One 3 hour hands-on group class with our bees in Shoreline
- Rainy Day Bees' own Introduction to Beekeeping guide.
- An experienced beekeeper you can call with questions, and a Facebook group for you and other students to talk bees on throughout the year (Rainy Day Bees will check in too!)
- optional add-on: 1 additional field class in Carnation, working multiple hives individually or in pairs, and overseen by Peter, with a possible second teacher depending on field class size. Hands on time is critical for learning beekeeping, so we highly recommend this addition. Dates listed are weather dependent. If changes are necessary, we will reschedule for the earliest possible date that all participants can attend.
- 15% discount on consultations at your hives with Rainy Day Bees
- Classroom Day 1: March 11, 1-5pm (max length)
- Classroom Day 2: March 18, 1-5pm (max length)
- Shoreline Field Class: April 1, (1-4pm, weather dependent; if canceled, will reschedule for the earliest possible date that all participants can attend)
- Optional Carnation Field Class: Saturday April 29 (weather and nucleus hive pickup schedule dependent. If class must be rescheduled, will reschedule for the earliest date that works for all participants)
Things to Know:
- Field class dates are weather dependent.
- Before the class, you'll receive recommendations for what equipment you will need to purchase in order to be prepared for your bees.
- You will need to provide your own protective equipment for field classes. We have suits and gloves available to rent if necessary.
- Class will focus on beekeeping in Langstroth hives.
- You can order bees (nucleus hives) from Rainy Day Bees at a discount on this form with your classes!
- Cancellation Policy: Cancel up to two weeks ahead of your first class for a 50% refund.
- Have any questions? Email us!