Hilltown Families


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Bees and flowers have an amazingly close relationship. Flowers need bees to reproduce, and bees need flowers to feed their colonies. Take away one, and the other would disappear too. It begs the question: When it comes to evolution, which came first, the bees or the flowers?

For humans, to bee or not to bee isn’t truly a question – we must always bee! Bees and other pollinators help to ensure that our crops produce food, and they are a critical part of ecosystems all over the world. Despite their importance, however, pollinator populations are declining worldwide and many native species of bees have already gone extinct. How is it that a species so important to our survival is disappearing? Lack of proper habitat is one of the major factors contributing to bees’ recent struggles, and lack of awareness isn’t helping them either! However, thanks to Piti Theater Company, western Massachusetts will be enjoying a spring filled with bee-related events and learning opportunities – helping to increase pollinator habitat, raise awareness about conserving local pollinator populations, and teaching families about the role of pollinators in our food systems.

It’s been the summer of love for pollinators! We have been reminded how much we need these important and industrious little creatures. The Berkshire Museum BeMuse Program series is offering two upcoming events which are particularly intriguing and inviting for those of you who want to get to know your local pollinators and how you can help them along the way!

Join a kid-safe bee revival! Support local pollinators in a kid-friendly, fun and educational way from your own backyard. The building of bee condos (also know as insect hotels) mobilizes woodworking skills and the use of recycled materials. When the bees come, the whole family can observe their habits and what plants they take a shine too. Support local pollinators with their own private condo, surrounded by native plants they are best attracted to!

It’s now well recorded that bees are under threat and that their shrinking numbers will have a negative impact on our environment. Innovative measures are being taken and communities are being mobilized to help curb the decline of this important pollinator. Within this process, there are inbuilt community-based learning opportunities that come with these programs. Families are invited to participate as citizen scientists, documenting, analyzing and photographing bee-movements and taking ownership of an important impact that will make a difference.

Amherst Cinema will screen the film “More than Honey,” partnering with CISA to bring a panel of local community members to discuss the vital relationship between humans and bees, and addresses the mysterious, drastic decline of honeybee colonies around the world in the last 15 years…

Project Native in the Berkshires has a new Native Butterfly House! This new addition will serve as a terrific community-based educational resource to help children and visitors understand the connection between butterflies and our native landscape here in Western MA. Pair a visit with a trip to Magic Wings in South Deerfield and the Springfield Museums’ “Amazing Butterflies” exhibit for a well-rounded educational experience that supplement nature studies involving pollinators & butterflies!

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