Bee Downtown, a startup led by NC State alumna Leigh-Kathryn Bonner, is focused on increasing the honeybee population in cities across the U.S. Today the company announced the installation of a new apiary on NC State’s Centennial Campus. The newest apiary, named after lead sponsor, Bandwidth, will be installed Friday, April 21st at 11:30 am on Centennial Campus.
Honeybees pollinate 80 percent of the world’s plants and are responsible for every third bite of food we eat. However, over the past 50 years, changing agricultural practices have crippled their population. In 2015, US beekeepers lost 44% percent of their hives. Bee Downtown is working directly with local businesses to rebuild the honeybee community and increase awareness around the changing food ecosystem.
“We are proud to welcome Leigh-Kathryn Bonner and her company Bee Downtown to Centennial Campus as we work to promote Centennial as a living lab where partners large and small can develop and prove new ideas and technologies that will be launched into the marketplace,” said Leah Burton, Director of the Centennial Campus Partnership Office. “We look forward to the buzz the new Apiary will create.”
In addition to the naming sponsor, Bandwidth, other sponsors of the apiary on Centennial Campus will include: NC State Entrepreneurship Initiative, NC State Nonprofit Institute, AndyAlbright.com, Freudenberg IT and Soul Garden.
Each business will participate in employee education training on bees, agriculture and food production. The businesses will also receive a portion of the honey their hives produce.
“Bee Downtown is thrilled to add beehives to NC State’s Centennial Campus. For the first time, consumers are directly holding businesses accountable for the effect they have on the environment,” said Bee Downtown Founder and CEO, Leigh-Kathryn Bonner. “When a business installs one of our hives, it is communicating a commitment to our environment, while also rebuilding healthy honey bee populations.”
Bee Downtown is a Durham-based startup focused on developing a healthy and sustainable honey bee population across the United States. Bee Downtown installs and maintains beehives for businesses at their locations as well as the option to sponsor hives at landmark locations like NC State Centennial Campus, North Carolina Museum of Art, and Honeysuckle Tea House across the Triangle, while also providing training and education on agriculture and food production. To learn more, visit https://www.bee-downtown.com/
Follow @BeeDowntown on Facebook Twitter and Instagram.
With 75 corporate, government and nonprofit partners employing more than 3,500 people,
Centennial Campus is one of the leading university research campuses in North America and beyond. This award-winning campus is a national and global model for fostering research and development partnerships with industry leaders. This mixed-use development boasts residential development, two public schools, a championship golf course, world-renowned Hunt Library and a new conference center/hotel opening in October, 2017.
Chelsea Poole (Bee Downtown)
Leah Burton (Centennial Campus)
Note: The installation starts at 11:30 near the intersection of Main Campus Drive and Campus Shore Drive and will take approximately 2 hours. BeeDowtown will bring the hives, in their painted boxes out and hive stands out and carry them to their spot! They will talk about the bees, their hives, the companies sponsoring them, and maybe open up one of the hives for people to get to taste some honey. They will light smokers and teach about bee communication and dance languages as well! People coming to the install are asked to wear long pants and close toed shoes.