Science Pub Portland: Bees!

DEC 11, 2018 | 7-9PM

We still have plenty of tickets for tonight's lecture but they are available at the door only. Online ticket sales have ended. We hope to see you soon!


The Buzz About Bees: Exploring the World of Our Most Vital Pollinators

With Thor Hanson, Ph.D., Conservation Biologist, Guggenheim Fellow and Author

December 11, 2018 | Doors Open @ 5PM 

$5 advance purchase for guaranteed seats; $5 suggested donation at the door. Tickets will be available online or at the OMSI front desk until 2pm the day of the event.; see below for details.


Bees are like oxygen: ubiquitous, essential, and, for the most part, unseen. Evolving alongside flowers, bees drove the vast array of floral colors, shapes, and scents that dominate our landscapes. The human relationship with bees took root deep in our prehistory, when early hominins sought out the sugary blast of honey at every opportunity. Domesticated long before horses, camels, or ducks, bees have enabled advances in everything from medicine and industry to intoxication, and now provide as much as a third of the food in the human diet. To know the bee isn’t just to understand a fascinating and beautiful insect: it is to glimpse a profound web of relationships, great and small, that binds together the human and the natural worlds.


In this talk, biologist and author Thor Hanson will describe a journey that began 125 million years ago, when a wasp first dared to feed pollen to its young.  He will explain how the co-evolution of bees and flowering plants led to great diversity on both sides of the equation, featuring not just honeybees but less familiar varieties like diggers, miners, leafcutters, cuckoos, carpenters, sweat bees, and more. The discussion will also confront the many challenges facing bees, and highlight what all of us can do to help them.


Author and biologist Thor Hanson is a Guggenheim Fellow, a Switzer Environmental Fellow, and winner of the John Burroughs Medal. His books include Buzz, The Triumph of Seeds, Feathers, and The Impenetrable Forest, as well as the illustrated children’s favorite, Bartholomew Quill.  Thor’s work has been translated into more than ten languages and earned many accolades, including the Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science and two Pacific Northwest Book Awards. His many media appearances have included NPR’s Fresh Air, Science Friday, and To the Best of Our Knowledge, as well as Book Lust with Nancy Pearl.  Hanson lives with his wife and son on an island in the Pacific Northwest.

OMSI Science Pub at the Empirical Theater is a ticketed event. To guarantee a seat at this event, please buy tickets online or at the OMSI front desk. Advanced tickets will be available for purchase until 2pm the day of the event. Please show your ticket at the theater entrance upon arrival.


If the event sells out, we will update the website and Facebook listings accordingly. If the event does not sell out in advance, attendance will be first-come, first-served at the door and at-the-door admission will remain a suggested donation.


There will no longer be official seat reservations available at the door. You are welcome to reserve a seat with your jacket or sweater.

Science Pub OMSI is a monthly event that is open to anyone and everyone – no scientific background required. Just bring your curiosity, sense of humor, and appetite for food, drinks and knowledge! For more information or to sign up for our mailing list, email:


Pizza and salads will be available in our restaurant, Theory, and sandwichs and snacks from the Empirical Café. Guests can check-in at the theater entrance and find a seat before grabbing dinner and drinks. Food and drink are welcome in the theater. Parking is free for the event. Doors open at 5pm.


For more information or to sign up for our mailing list, email: