Laura Josephs and Jon Mirin in “To Be or Not To Bee.” Isaac Harrell photo

Friends of Merrymeeting Bay’s eighth and final presentation of its 25th annual Winter Speaker Series, “To Bee or Not To Bee,” is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 11, via Zoom.

It will feature the award-winning Piti Theatre Troupe, based in Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts, and Les Ponts-de-Martel, Switzerland, according to a news release from the Richmond-based conservation organization.

Not a week goes by without a score of alarming emails about the loss of insect pollinators from a variety of causes including pesticides, habitat loss, climate change and radio frequency radiation from wireless proliferation. Piti shines their spotlight on this serious problem with the story of Farmer John, who gradually replaced his diverse crops with only corn in order to fill a growing corporate demand for corn by-products. In doing so, he has lost his bees, there’s only gruel to eat and now the townspeople (the audience) have arrived to protest, chanting “There’s no good food, we’re in a bad mood.”

To Bee tells James’ comic, tragic and ultimately hopeful story — complete with puppetry, clowning, dance, live music and lots of audience participation. Piti created the show to raise awareness about the honeybee’s plight and gives children and adults tools for helping bees thrive in their communities.

Jonathan Mirin (artistic director, playwright, performer, teacher) plays have been performed in New York, regionally and internationally. His performance in “Riding the” was nominated in 2004 and 2008 by Independent Reviewers of New England for Best Solo Performance, “Small Company.” In 2014, he received an award from Club Passim’s Iguana Fund for the songs he’s written with Piti Theatre’s musician-in-residence Carrie Ferguson. He has also received the Children’s Theater Foundation of America’s Aurand Harris Fellowship and is a two-time finalist for the Actor’s Theatre of Louisville Heidemann Award.

Friends host their Winter Speaker Series October-May, the second Wednesday of each month. Because of continued high rates of COVID infections, the group is not scheduling its usual Summer Outings Series but may offer some pop-up events should pandemic conditions dramatically improve.

Speaker series presentations are free, open to the public. Visit to see speaker biographies, full event schedules, video recordings of past presentations, become a member, and learn more about how to help protect Merrymeeting Bay and the Gulf of Maine.

FOMB’s Winter Speaker Series presentations are accessible via hyperlink at the top of the FOMB web page

For more information, contact the organization at 207-666-3372 or [email protected].