“The Pollinizing Sessions” (January to May 2016) was a series of nine talks and three workshops in Kelowna to learn about pollinators in our community. The sessions were held in partnership with the Okanagan Regional Library. “The Pollinizing Sessions” invited experts who helped the community learn more about important species such as bumble bees and other native bees and insects, about which plants can best support them, about pollinators’ importance to agriculture, and ways to build and support habitat for them. All talks took place at the downtown Kelowna Branch of the Okanagan Regional Library (1380 Ellis St) from 7:30-8:00 PM. They were free of charge. The workshops were also free but attendees pre-registered as seating is limited. Talks attracted large audience of between 40 and 100 people and all the workshops were full with wait lists.
The Sessions included Dr. Ralph Cartar of The University of Calgary, Gabe Cipes of Summerhill Bistro and Winery, Kenna Mackenzie of the Pacific-Agri Food Research Centre in Summerland, Brian Campbell of West Coast Seeds, Gwen Steele of the Okanagan Xeriscape Association, Tracey Kim Campbell of Of the Land Productions Inc, Dr. Elizabeth Elle of Simon Fraser University, and author Lori Weidenhammer. The workshops were on growing native plants, building homes for bees, and on “Bee ID”- a Citizen Science training session with Dr. Elle. The first talk was held on November 24th with Nancy Holmes who talked about the Public Art Pollinator Pasture and Lorri Dauncey of the Central Okanagan Heritage Society who talked about the heritage values of Kelowna’s pasture site: Brent’s Grist Mill Park.
The series was sponsored by the Okanagan Regional Library, The Public Art Pollinator Pasture Project in Kelowna, Border Free Bees, and the Eco Art Incubator in the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies at UBC Okanagan.