By Diana Brement,
1I reached out to David Feinberg after seeing his name in a Seattle Times’ Pacific Northwest Magazine article about local beekeepers who have worked with SeaTac Airport to set up hives there, “for artistic and commercial and genetic reasons,” David explains. The hives are kept without treatments, insecticides, antibiotics or oils that help prevent infestations of mites and a disease called nosema.
David and his wife, Sarah Moore, live on one acre in Burien, just over the Seattle city line, on what he calls the “ne plus ultra” of urban mini farms.
“I’m going to brag,” David says. “We probably have the largest, coolest, one acre in the immediate [area].”
Though he says the place is a mess, “we do it for our own pleasure.”
Along with bees, they have “two pregnant goats, fruit trees, chickens, treehouses,” and a sixth grade son, Noah. (A grown daughter lives in California.)
As we spoke on the phone, David walked around the farm and stopped to visit the bees. “The box is covered with poop,” he observed, “because nosema gives bees dysentery.”
But the queen survived the winter — and that means honey.
Nosema may or may not be the reason for the recent bee die-off in this country. Pinpointing the cause is “very complicated” and “hard to untangle” says David. Limited genetic stock, the result of a 1924 law banning the import of queen bees, might have contributed to the problem. Leaving colonies untreated hopefully allows bees to strengthen their genetic pool through natural selection.
Both David and Sarah have day jobs, because “no one can make a living off an urban mini-farm,” he says, but they sometimes sell surplus eggs, goat milk and honey.
Sarah is Pacific Science Center’s life science manager in Seattle, where she runs the butterfly house and is “queen of the naked mole rats” (www.pacificsciencecenter.org). David refurbishes and sells Norwalk commercial juicers. An industrial designer by training, he is developing a juicer of his own in his machine shop on the property.
Growing up in Long Island City (Queens), New York, David moved to Seattle in 1978. He and Sarah had a smaller farm in Lake City before moving to Burien 12 years ago. A designer of boat and RV covers and other products for a number of local manufacturers, he still consults with the last sewing factory in Seattle.
Noah, Sarah and David all blog about the farm at severalgardens.blogspot.com. Spend an entertaining few minutes there reading about their housetrained goat that got stuck in the duck house.
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Tacoma mega-fundraiser Adria Farber.
She’s not doing it for the glory, but Adria Farber says a little recognition never hurts, especially if it draws attention to the charitable causes for which she works so hard.
“It’s important to let people know they’re appreciated,” observes Adria, and “with the diabetes, I just want to let people know [how to] make life better… If I can do that in any way, I feel like I’ve done something.”
Last year, Adria received a Tacoma News Tribune City of Destiny award for her fundraising work for the American Diabetes Association, which the paper called “legendary.” This May, she will receive a Kurt Gegner Award from the National Football Foundation for her work with the Tacoma Athletic Commission. Adria has supported the commission — which raises money for local amateur sports programs and scholarships — in memory of her late husband, Tacoma News Tribune sports writer Stan Farber. (Gegner was a 1950s UW Husky football player.)
A Garfield High alumna, Adria grew up in Seattle, the daughter of Dorothy and Herman Offenhenden. Dorothy was the long-time tribute chair for City of Hope hospital and Adria learned about charity and organizing by taking calls for her mom from an early age.
Moving to Tacoma in the 1970s to work for the state, Adria met and married Stan. Like her, he had diabetes, and he died in 2005 from heart complications related to the disease. The couple was active at Temple Beth El and Adria still is. When we spoke last week, she had just returned from making Purim baskets there.
Planning for local activities benefitting the American Diabetes Association has already begun. There will be a walk on Oct. 11, a dining-out fundraiser in November, and a diabetes awareness night at an August Kitsap Blue Jacket’s collegiate league baseball game. That is being organized with team co-owner, and Adria’s current life partner, Charlie Littman.
The now-retired and self-described “Zumba queen” stresses that “you can have diabetes…and live a normal life and be a healthy…[and] productive person.”
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Short takes: Seattle Met magazine ran a nice profile earlier this month of Ari Lackman and Rebecca Kaplan, third-generation brother and sister owners of Glazer’s Camera in South Lake Union. It details the new generation’s approach to the future, and there’s a great photo of the team.