The past few days have been hectic. Friday I drove to Denver to attend the Colorado Chocolate Festival. But on the way down I had to drop chocolate off to my friends at Knapp Harvest in Eagle, the cutest store with tons of bee-centric things for your home. Then to Edwards to pick up a kegerator for future chocolate sodas to keep you cool all summer, then to Denver Restaurant Equipment to look for bargains on coffee machines, coolers and all the other things I need in order to build out a desert restaurant.
Then to the Chocolate Festival! Doors opened at 4pm, I was only a few minutes behind that. Right inside the front door was one of my favorite denver chocolatiers, "M2 Confections" They do such a nice job on their products. I always buy from them. After that a California chocolatier, that had some interesting things and then Cocoapod, a new place for me, they are killing it on bonbon painting. Had to buy a box to see what they were like. The Chocolate therapist was there as well, she's got a storefront in downtown Littelton Colorado, she has bars and things they call "chocolate meltaways" Chocolate and coconut oil for health. Then there was the Ecuadorian chocolate maker, who's stuff I didn't really like.
After that was several rooms filled with Pella window sales, mary-kay, home food delivery, and on. I was pretty amazed that there were so many non-food vendors. The remainder were confections like cake pops. Fudge, wine, rum, popcorn, coffee, and one brave sole selling clothing. She was very lonely. I felt badly for her.
I went to see if it would be worthwhile to attend as a vendor myself. Short answer NO. There was very little in the way of chocolate. Where was Dar? BiaBamba? Nuance? even Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory?It might be time to start an actual chocolate festival where you have to produce actual chocolate.
But now to talk about what this column is all about! Bees, The final task of my day was to drive to Boulder and pick up 8 packages of bees. A "package" is a wooden box with screened in sides that have about 3lbs (about 10,000) of bees. The purpose of the trip was to bring them back to the roaring fork valley and get them into the hands of a few beekeepers here. That was Friday. Saturday, Crystal and I started early to place the girls in their new homes starting around 8am. The first three at Sustainable Settings went very well even though the wind was a bit much. Next stop Crystals to put in two hives there. All going well so far. Next stop CRMPI (Central Rocky Mountain Permaculture Institute) on the side of basalt mountain to install two hives on top of their chicken coop. With help from the interns we got it done. Last stop a friend who wanted the final package to go into a top-bar hive. Sunday I went around to release the queens in all the hives. so far no stings. All the girls were very docile. A good weekend. I'm tired.