What is the Pollinator Plus Museum, and how did this idea come to be?
The Pollinator Plus Museum is a radical new idea for helping to educate the public about everything pollinators, educate the public about invasive plants (one of the greatest local threats to pollinators), and to raise substantial revenue to help remove invasive plants, and to create well maintained pollinator habitats in our area.
The Pollinator Plus Museum will be an amazing destination where visitors will learn all about what pollinators are, what they do and how they do it, why they are so crucial to our existence, and what the extreme threats are that they face. The PPM will also provide detailed information about invasive plants found throughout southwest Ohio, and why they are such a huge threat to pollinators (and to us and our natural world around us).
The PLUS portion of Pollinators Plus can mean two things. On one hand it tells you that the museum will have a number of awesome displays that have nothing to do with pollinators. This will help us reach a much broader market which will then allow us to expose more people to information about pollinators, while allowing us to raise more funds to remove invasive plants, and create pollinator habitats. The other meaning of PLUS in the organization name is simply that there will be a museum, PLUS we will also be removing invasive plants, and creating pollinator habitats. It's all a huge win win!
The vision for the Pollinator Plus Museum comes from Cincinnati native Ken Carman.
Ken grew up in a home that overlooked Winton Woods lake, and Harbor Point. He mentored under the Hamilton County Park District (now Great Parks) naturalist staff, attending many of the Sunday morning nature walks at Winton Woods, Sharon Woods, Miami Whitewater Forest, and Shawnee Lookout. He spent all of his childhood years exploring Winton Woods, learning all about the flora and fauna that could be found there, while also spending countless hours fishing for carp and catfish in the lake.
Ken learned to garden organically from his mother, spending many summers helping her raise fruits and vegetables, while developing what has become a lifelong passion.
Ken is an accomplished interpretive naturalist, and an accomplished wildlife photographer. He is consumed with the idea of Radical Resourcefulness, and passionate about everything sustainable.
He led guided nature walks south of the Smokies back in the nineties, and while living in Dayton, Ohio from 2003 to 2011 he led many litter pick-up outings, started and led a major beautification and cleanup of West 3rd St., founded the Feed Dayton Urban Farming Program which was growing food for the hungry and homeless at seven locations when he left in December of 2011.
While living in Dayton, Ken was featured in six local television news stories, was a guest on two live radio station programs, and was one of only three county residents selected to help form a new Keep Montgomery County Beautiful committee.
Ken and his wife Brenda decided they needed a break from Ohio winters, and moved to Charleston County South Carolina. Ken spent the last three years there as the caretaker/naturalist/historian/wildlife photographer/wildlife habitat manager for a 157 acre nature preserve called Roxbury Park. Under Ken's care and leadership, the park began to be recognized as a Lowcountry treasure, and when he left in September of 2016, the park had recorded over 175 different bird species, and Ken had posted over 12,000 images on the Roxbury Park Facebook page he started, which was and still is a full 5 Star rated page/destination.
Ken and his wife came back to Ohio in September of 2016 to help care for his elderly parents who reside at Christian Village of Mason. His father recently turned ninety years old on this past April 11th, and his mother will turn ninety in June of this year.
On another interesting note, Ken is the father of Jackson Carman who plays football at Fairfield High School. Jackson is recognized by many as the number one offensive lineman football recruit in the nation for the class of 2018, and he already has offers from over 40 division I programs including all of the colleges in the Big Ten. Here are a few tips from Ken on how to observe and photograph interesting critters when spending time outdoors.