Skagit Valley Beekeepers Association

Newsletter for August 2022 


Meet you at the Fair!
Special Schedule and Events

Our activities this month are centered around the Skagit County Fair. We hope you can join us for any or all of the events we have planned, beginning with the SVBA meeting before the Fair, helping to prepare and staff our booth during the Fair, or participating as an exhibitor in the honey judging event that we have organized. Here's the line-up, and schedule, and related information.




Join us at a Special Meeting this Month
Tuesday, August 9th at 6:30 PM
Skagit County Fairgrounds Building "D"


Our monthly meeting on Tuesday, August 9 at 6:30 will also serve as a set-up session for the SVBA exhibit space in Building D at the fairgrounds, just south of Mt. Vernon Center. It will be busy time that evening, as exhibitors are setting up everywhere, but it shouldn't be difficult to find your way to this space that we share with other "open class" exhibits.

It'll also a good time to get some late summer insights and advice from your fellow beekeepers, as we all prepare for harvesting the results of this unusual beekeeping season.


Help with the SVBA Booth at the Fair
Set-up and Decoration, Tuesday, August 9
Fair Booth: August 10 - 13


  • Decoration - Heather Oates is heading up a decorating committee for the booth, and is currently the only member, so let her know if you can help her out. Please contact Heather at or by phone (360)-391-7357 to see when and what you could do, in addition to helping during the meeting on Tuesday.
  • Staffing the Booth - Rob Johnson is organizing the booth staffing, which includes 4-hour stints at various times of the day and evenings. You have a chance to talk to curious fairgoers and reveal a few of the mysteries and magic of beekeeping. Sign up for a time slot by contacting Rob at or by phone or text, (360) 770-6170.


Participate in the Honey Judging Event
Early drop off Sunday August 7th 10 AM to 2 PM
Drop-off Deadline Tuesday August 9th 9 AM to 2 PM

Where? Skagit County Fairgrounds Building "D"
In person drop-offs only:
entrants must submit entries themselves


  • Categories - Our event and related exhibition are called "Open Class Honey". The judging categories are called "divisions" and include both extracted honey (light, amber, and dark) in bottles and full honey frames. There are special divisions for youth aged 6 to 12, and 13 to 17. There will also be a category for children, who can prepare posters describing their own experiences with bees and beekeeping.
  • Registration - You can register on-line at the Fair's website, through this link . Just click on the numbers and follow the steps. The entry fees are small, and children's poster entries are free. If you can print out your finished form and bring it, that would be helpful. If it is more convenient for you or if the on-line registration is closed, you can also register in person at the Fair when you drop off your entry.
  • Entry Drop-off - There are two times for dropping off your entries at the Fair, in Building D. Rob Johnson will be at there on Sunday, August 7th from 10 AM to 2 PM to take in entries. The final deadline is between 9 AM and 2 PM on Tuesday, August 9. Rob reminds everyone that each entry must be submitted in person by the person on the entry form. No entries will be accepted for someone other than the person presenting the entry (for example, a person cannot bring their spouse's entry or entries from multiple people). 
  • Getting Jars and Lids  - All of the extracted honey must be submitted in identical jars without any identification. For those entering extracted honey and haven't gotten them at previous SVBA meetings, you can get them through Brad Raspet or Heather Oates in the Mount Vernon area, or Rob Johnson for those near Anacortes, La Conner, or Oak Harbor. Their contact information is at the end of this newsletter.




Our July Potluck
Great eats, and mite techniques


The unseasonable chilly weather this spring and early summer extended to our annual picnic on July 17th, before we made the turn to warm, sunny days. We had a good turnout, and as always, an awesome spread.
Bruce Bowen made a very interesting discussion about an innovative approach to mite control that he has been trying out, and provided members with samples of extended-release strips that he has assembled that are an alternative to oxalic acid vaporization. The key idea is to provide a low dose of oxalic acid that dissipates over a period of time, which is easy to install and likely to be less harsh on colonies than more intensive applications. More information on this treatment can be found at Randy Oliver's website:



Bruce and bins of mite strips at the picnic



Trading Post


Les's Bees has a full line of beekeeping woodenware and supplies in Bellingham - For those gearing up for the harvest season and fall feeding, it is a good time to get in touch with SVBA member Les Scott, who has gone into business providing a wide range of beekeeping supplies. We will be featuring Les and his operation in a future newsletter. Check out at or contact Les Scott directly by e-mail, call, or text:  360-303-0396.

If you have supplies and equipment that you may be interested in swapping, selling, or just plain giving to other interested members of the SVBA, send a brief description, price, and contact information to your editor,



SVBA Membership

Renew or Join Now  


If you haven't already sprung at the chance, your 2022 SVBA membership dues are now overdue. What a great thing to do at the County Fair when you spot President Brad Raspet at our booth.You can also simply mail us your annual renewal fee of just $12.00. For those who wish to join, it's the same price, and a wonderful introduction to our beekeeping community with the many programs, events, education, advice and connections that we offer. The membership form and payment instructions are found at:



Brad Raspet, President

Dawn Beck, Vice President
Rob Johnson, Treasurer
Susan DeLawter, Secretary

Steve Cecil, Newsletter

Alvin Forar, Board

Heather Oates, Board
Seth Smith, Board