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About Us

  • John Shonyo

    John Shonyo

    John Shonyo is co-owner of The Bee Shed. He has been a beekeeper for over 10 years having been introduced to it by his uncle who kept bees from the time he returned from WWII until the 1990’s. John’s love of nature and a propensity to try new things made beekeeping a natural fit.

    Within a couple of years of his start in beekeeping, John set up Bees Knees Honey Farm. The business grew to where he began looking for a partner. Fortuitously, John got connected with The Bee Shed just as the founders, Chris Schad and Ed Simon, were looking to take on a partner as Ed retired from the business. The rest, as they say, is history.

    John has teaching in his genes. Post college he was a teacher, and education has been a component of virtually every job he has held since then (in addition to 13 years as an adjunct professor for St. Mary’s College). He has given a significant number of presentations on beekeeping to a wide variety of audiences, including kids which he finds especially enjoyable. He and Chris regularly teach beekeeping classes through area community education programs.

  • Chris Schad

    Chris Schad

    Chris Schad is founder and co-owner of The Bee Shed. He is a biologist by training and a certified Minnesota Master Naturalist. Chris' grandfather was a beekeeper 'back in the day', and though the beekeeping bug skipped a generation, he credits his dad for instilling an appreciation for the natural world.

    As a scientist, Chris prefers to take a scientific and natural-resources approach to managing the bees, considering how the bees thrive in their setting (the bee yard) and the supporting forage surrounding the yard.

    Chris loves to teach about beekeeping and the need for native prairie restoration. He produced a highly regarded TEDx talk about the natural history of North American prairies, and he is an instructor for the University of Minnesota Bee Squad.

    Between Chris and co-owner John Shonyo, thousands have learned about beekeeping or heard the message about supporting pollinators through prairie restoration.