Buzzing with Excitement!
In 2016, Edmonton’s convention centre welcomed our newest tenants, a hive of urban bees. As a part of our sustainability program and the City of Edmonton’s urban beekeeping program, one hive with 8,000 bees was installed on the south east corner of our property.
Managed by professional beekeeper Patricia Milligan of Lola Canola Honey, the beehive grows to approximately 100,000 bees each summer, allowing us to harvest over 90 pounds of honey. From sweeteners to specialty desserts, our renowned culinary team utilizes our signature honey in a variety of mouth watering dishes served to clients and guests. The honey is unique in flavour and colour, containing a minty undertone which can be attributed to the cat mint planted as a part of our sustainable permaculture.
The Shaw Conference Centre bees have been the centre of attention since they’ve arrived. From Global Edmonton, 630 Ched and Avenue Edmonton writing about our newest tenants to community members stopping by for “Bee Safaris” with Patty Milligan, they have been a great addition to our sustainability program. In fact, a Japanese film crew even heard about our bees and traveled to Edmonton to film them as part of the television show, Bee World.
“We selected the Shaw Conference Centre as we were attracted to beekeeping right in the heart of a big city,” says Mr. Tomoaki Fukuda, Director Bee World. “We were so impressed that the conference centre had been planting local flowers and indigenous medicinal plants even before the City of Edmonton permitted the beekeeping in its downtown. Edmonton is a beautiful city and our audience was able to see first-hand how Alberta’s capital city is leading the way in supporting beekeeping.”
The next time you stop by the Shaw Conference Centre, we encourage you to visit our bees. You might even get lucky and see Patty working. She’s always happy to help you learn more about our bees and take you on one of her famous “Bee Safari” educational sessions.
The urban beehive complements our sustainable permaculture and contributes to its urban biodiversity. In addition to having North America’s largest urban parkland as its backyard, an indigenous medicine wheel garden, herb and vegetable garden, and monarch butterfly preservation garden are also featured on our property.
Grab a Shaw Conference walking tour booklet from our administration office on the pedway level and explore the sights and sounds of Edmonton’s convention centre!