Adult Opportunities

Beginning Beekeeping

Learn the essentials of beekeeping so you can start your own hive.

Content Detail

Please note: This program is sold out. 

Learn the basics of beekeeping. If you are curious about honeybees, interested in starting your own hive and harvesting your own honey, or you already have a hive and want to learn more about managing it, join experienced beekeepers in this class at The Morton Arboretum to learn how to start beekeeping. Explore the history of beekeeping, bee anatomy, starting up a colony, managing it through the year, basic beekeeping supplies and equipment, honeybee pests and diseases, harvesting honey, and more.

This program meets in person at the Arboretum.

Instructors: Pete Soltesz, president, Cook-DuPage Beekeepers Association; Kim Kulton, beekeeper

Age: 16 and older

Course number: N158

Pete Soltesz, president, Cook-DuPage Beekeepers Association

Pete Soltesz has been president of the Cook-DuPage Beekeepers Association, one of the largest beekeeping clubs in the Midwest, since 2013. During this time, he has introduced hundreds of new members to the culture of beekeeping via classroom instruction, hands-on mentoring, and hosting guest speakers and webinar series. He has also served on the board of directors of the Illinois State Beekeeping Association as a former vice president. He has extensive experience in raising treatment-free bees, rearing queens, splitting hives, pollinating crops, relocating bees, and creating habitat. He is passionate about helping others acquire the knowledge and skills needed to have a successful journey with keeping bees.

Kim Kulton, beekeeper

Kim Kulton, a native of Elmhurst, earned her bachelors of science in biology and chemistry at Northern Illinois University, minoring in anthropology. She began her career as an entomologist with the state of Illinois and was first to confirm the presence of West Nile virus in Illinois. In 2013, she was visiting a friend who was having a colony of honeybees removed from her roof. She was so fascinated, she rolled up her sleeves, climbed the scaffolding, and helped the beekeeper vacuum the bees and cut out the comb. Later, she went on to form her own company, Bee All About It. Today, she collects and removes swarms, raises local queens, promotes bee venom apitherapy, provides pollination services, and produces local honey for sale. She manages more than 85 colonies of bees in 11 locations around the Chicago area. She is a director on the board of the Cook-DuPage Beekeepers Association.

What to Know

This program will take place indoors.

The recommended text, The Backyard Beekeeper: An Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Keeping Bees in Your Yard and Garden, is available in The Arboretum Store.

Program Schedule

This program includes the following five meeting times.

Thursday, February 8, 2024, 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Thursday, February 15, 2024, 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Thursday, February 22, 2024, 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Thursday, February 29, 2024, 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Thursday, March 7, 2024, 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Cudahy Room, Administration and Research Center


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