HURRICANE – There’s a new bakery in town, and it comes with a little something different – a touch of honey.
Muddy Bees Bakery recently opened its doors at 525 W. State Street in Hurricane, offering all things sweet, local and edible, as well as supplies and instruction for wannabe beekeepers.
The bakery is owned by husband and wife Cory and Alisha Martin, who have been running the bakery and bee business out of their home for five years. Cory Martin is the baker and beekeeper, while Alisha Martin is in charge of bills, decor and other duties.
Cory Martin started baking breads, then added sweets – and the shop offers a wide variety of sweet treats, including cookies, cake by the slice, cinnamon and orange rolls, cupcakes and “Kolob bars,” which are a sweet concoction of oats, coconut, cream cheese and different fruits. The bakery also offers gluten-free baked goods.
The bakery has been open for about a month, and celebrated with a ribbon-cutting Monday sponsored by the Hurricane Valley Chamber of Commerce.
Honey, bees and equipment
The shop sells the Martins’ own honey and Lofthouse honey, produced by local beekeeper and county bee inspector Casey Lofthouse. Also for sale is local honey from across the state and the country, including Torrey; Wyoming; Flagstaff, Arizona; Colorado Springs, Colorado; and as far away as Puerto Rico.
“Local, flower-fed, nonmedicated honey,” is what the Martins advertise, as they use essential oils rather than chemicals to treat common bee maladies.
The local honey comes in different flavors, depending on the flowers that are blooming and the location of the beehives when the honey is extracted.
All the Martins’ honey is wildflower honey, but the bees are moved with the changing blooms. In early spring, the hives are kept in the lower elevation and the bees gather nectar and pollen from fruit trees, dandelions, desert flowers and other blooming plants.
Around June 1, depending on the temperature and snowpack, the hives are moved to Kolob where they spend the summer making honey from higher-elevation flowers.
Cory Martin himself owns 100-150 beehives and, along with Lofthouse, offers a beginning beekeeping class each spring. The next class will be held in February 2016, and every year more and more people sign up.
“It’s an excellent class,” Leeds resident Steve Dyroff said. Dyroff and his wife Tina took Cory Martin’s class last February. “I came in as a hobbyist, and he hit every topic that needed to be talked about,” Dyroff said.
There is a growing interest in beekeeping, Cory Martin said.
“Every year there are more and more people getting into it,” he said, with 20-30 people taking the beginning class each spring.
“People come from Phoenix (Arizona) and Las Vegas (Nevada) to take the classes,” Martin said, “and from all of southern Arizona.”
Martin offers beginning beekeeping packages, consisting of bees, equipment and knowledge; a bee “package” is 3 pounds of bees, including a queen, that can be introduced into an empty hive.
Martin also offers beekeeping suits, hives, extractors and other equipment, along with beekeeping services such as honey extraction and swarm removal.
Helping new beekeepers get started not only helps keep the bee population strong, but perhaps more importantly, helps the public understanding of bee populations, Martin said.
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- Address: 525 W. State Street Suite 7 in Hurricane
- Hours: 6 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday
- Muddy Bees Bakery website, Facebook page
- Southern Utah Beekeepers Facebook page
- Utah Department of Agriculture and Food – Beekeeping Web page
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