By: EVA MONHAUT
This semester the IU South Bend Bee Art Contest, hosted by the Center for a Sustainable Future, buzzes back to campus for its second year.
Contest organizer, Julianna Rieckmann, announced that this year the contest is not only open to students at IU South Bend but to the entire community over 18. Submissions are currently open until April 3, 2020.
Library Business Operations Manager, Angela Huff, who is also the one who help establish the honey bees relates why bees are such fascinating creatures.
“Honey bees, specifically, are the only living thing I know of that can produce food which is a natural preservative without an expiration date, and has many health benefits. Some honey discovered in Egypt was found to be well over 5,000 years old.
When you understand how important bees are to our ecosystem and food supply, you develop an appreciation for them…There is so much to learn when starting out with something as small as a bee,” exclaimed Huff.
The contest began last year when Rieckmann, who was working with the bee project on campus, found herself inspired by similar ideas across the globe.
“I wanted to think of a fun event where students could learn and have a good time. As an artist myself and a sustainability student, I put the two together to create a fun, engaging contest opportunity,” said Rieckmann.
The contest will be held on April 23, 2020 from 4:00 to 7:00pm and the winners will be announced at the Earth Day Reception on the 23rd from 5:30 to 7:30pm. A local bee honey box prize will be awarded the featuring local honey from our beekeepers, lip balm, and other bee themed items.
“I think this is a good opportunity for people to learn about the issues that bees face such as pollution, climate change, and the use of pesticides and they can then teach their viewers about it through their art,” said Rieckmann.
Huff also urges students to submit. “The contest brings awareness to the plight of honey bees not just in our community, but on a global level.
Honey bees alone pollinate at least one-third of our global food supply, and directly impact approximately $16 billion of crops in the U. S…some crops depend almost entirely on honey bee pollination, like almonds, blueberries, cherries, and more,” related Huff.
Flyers can be found around campus with details on how to submit. For more information or any questions contact Julianna Rieckmann directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. For student’s just interested in learning more about bees, Huff urges them to actively learn more.
“Follow the IU South Bend Russian honey bees on Twitter: @IUSBees. Learn more about IU South Bend’s Bee Campus USA designation at http://www.beecityusa.org/.
Last, to promote pollinator awareness, or learn how to provide greatly needed habitat and food sources for our local pollinators, another site I like to use is pollinator.org. Help us help the bees! Your food depends on their survival,” concluded Huff.