BRUCE, S.D. (KELO) — One KELOLAND community is buzzing over a new piece of artwork.

The city of Bruce has a rich history in the honey industry. Local operation Adee Honey Farms is one of the largest honey producers in the nation. Now, they are celebrating this community staple with a large mural covering the historic downtown drugstore.

From ‘Honey Days’ to honey farms, bees are a big part of the history of Bruce, South Dakota. Local honey producers Adee Honey Farms decided to celebrate their 65th year in business and honor their founders by giving back to the community in a colorful way, a mural.

“The school that was here in Bruce originally had the mascot of the Bruce Bees, which was very interesting, and now that we have our headquarters here you know it’s one of the largest beekeepers in the U.S. it’s just kind of a neat natural fit that it all started in the town with the Bruce Bees,” said Marla Hoyer, Adee Honey Farm.

For artist Chuck Bennis, the mural was his biggest project to date. The piece is over 100 feet long, 30 feet tall and it took him several months to complete.

“I love to push myself, so working on new sizes and you know, new themes, it’s always fun. Especially once it’s completed and you know watching the reactions of people is just a joy for me,” said Bennis.

In the mural you can see the farm’s founders, Richard and Alice Adee, recognizing their dedication to growing honey production in the community.

“It celebrates kind of dad and mom and their endeavor to build a business and you know handing off the torch and you see in the background the old trucks we had back in the 70’s and before that we had the trucks of the 60’s, so it’s just kind of a nice celebration of 65 years in South Dakota,” said Bret Adee, Adee Honey Farm.

Bringing a buzz to downtown Bruce.

“I was so excited to do a mural in a small town like this because a lot of times small towns like this are just surviving and when there’s creativity and things happen like this it really draws people in, gets the community connected, and then there’s a sense of thriving,” said Bennis.

“I just think it gives a sense of community, it’s great you know with everybody kind of talking and visiting and it just gives people a chance to come together in different ways,” said Hoyer.

The mural was completed in July, just in time for the city’s ‘Honey Days’ celebration.
That event takes place every year on the last weekend in July.