What is the Mt. Baker Beekeeper Association?
Great questions! Mt. Baker Beekeepers Association (MBBA) is an Non-Profit 501(c)(3) Organization, run and managed entirely on volunteer basis. MBBA is structured with elected Officers and Board Members, we have a set of Bylaws that we have developed over time for charitable, scientific, literary and educational purpose, to engage in and promote education of beekeeper, prospective beekeepers and general public about apiculture, to promote sustainable beekeeping, to protect honeybees and advance good relations between beekeepers and the public. In a nutshell, we are here for the our local community members, bee enthusiasts and beekeepers of all levels, to learn about honeybees and beekeeping and network with others who may or may not be beekeepers.
How did it get started? When was this Association created?
MBBA started in 1971 and became Incorporated on September 2010. This year is our Golden Jubilee Year of being an Bee Club Association for 50 years! We do have one member who has been in the club since 1971.
MBBA was started because in the late 60’s and early 70’s there were over 500 beekeepers in Whatcom and Skagit Counties and the State Apiary Inspector had only 6 days budgeted to do inspections for diseases in the area. The Inspector, Roy Thurber, was finding far too much Foulbrood. There were no bee clubs north of Marysville and Roy could see the need for a club in the northern counties to try to educate beekeepers to be more responsible and better beekeepers.
Roy, the 2 County Extension Agents, and several concerned beekeepers from the 2 counties met in 1971 and discussed starting a club to meet in Bellingham to serve both counties. The name, Mt. Baker Beekeepers, was chosen to cover both counties. The club met in the meeting room of the main branch of the Bellingham Public Library. A few years later, the Skagit beekeepers broke away and started their own club.