VISIT & explore

Honey Bee Weekend at the Arboretum

September is National Honey Month and The Morton Arboretum will be a beehive of activity during Honey Bee Weekend September 7 and 8. Buzz in to the Arb to celebrate all things honey.
Honey Mead Dinner
September 5
6:00 p.m.
$50 member, $55 nonmember
Enjoy honey-inspired food paired with mead, a honey wine, at the second annual Honey Mead Dinner at the Arboretum. Arboretum beekeeper Greg Fischer will be present to explain the pairings and how mead is made.
Honey Expo
September 7 and 8
10:00 a.m.–4:00 p.m.
Free with admission
Stop by the Honey Expo, your source for locally-produced honey, honey- and bee-themed products including honey beer and mead, honey breads and jams, candles, lotions, and beekeeper kits.
Family Honeybee Hikes
September 7 and 8
Various times
$5 member, $6 nonmember including admission
These family-friendly hikes, which include a viewing of the Arboretum’s beehives, highlight honeybees, their favorite flowers, and how honey is made. Advance registration is encouraged.
Happy Bee-Day
September 7 and 8
Various times
Children’s Garden
Free with admission
We’re celebrating the 8th birthday of the Children’s Garden with a bee-utiful event! Make a bee mask and enjoy other bee crafts and activities. Local beekeepers will be in the garden to display beekeeping equipment and answer questions.
Beehive Tour
September 6 or 8
9:00–11:00 a.m.
$22 member, $30 nonmember including admission
Join the Arboretum’s beekeeper, Greg Fischer of the Wild Blossom Meadery, to learn about the importance of bees in horticulture and the environmental health of the planet. Put on your bee netting (provided) as Greg leads a tour of the bee hives kept onsite at the Arboretum. Enjoy a sample of honey for a sweet finish to the tour.
Honey Lunch & Learn with Dr. May Berenbaum
September 7
11:30 a.m.–1:00 p.m.
$22 member, $30 nonmember including admission
Over a honey-themed buffet lunch, noted University of Illinois entomologist Dr. May Berenbaum will provide an update on the health of our honeybee populations during a Lunch & Learn talk, “Healthy Bees, Healthy Food.” Learn about honeybees’ biology and what they eat, hear about the latest on colony collapse disorder and more. A book signing will follow at 2:00 p.m. in Arbor Court.
Did you know...
  • Honeybees are vital to our ecosystem and the foods we eat, according to Arboretum beekeeper Greg Fischer. “Many don’t realize that most honeybees are friendly,” he says. “And while we enjoy the honey they produce, they do so much more for us. In fact, every third bite we eat depends on pollination by honeybees.”
  • Statistics show how crucial honeybees are to our economy and crop production. Western nations rely heavily on managed honeybees–the bees that ride in trucks from farm to farm–to keep commercial agriculture productive.
  • About a third of our foods–nearly 100 key crops–rely on honeybees, including apples, almonds, blueberries and raspberries.
  • In total, honeybees contribute more than $15 billion to US crop production.