November 30, 2007

It's Time for the Fungus Fair!

The Mycological Society of San Francisco's 38th annual Fungus Fair starts tomorrow at the Oakland Museum of California. If you can get there, don't miss it. It's probably the best event of its kind anywhere. In fact, it was attending this event years ago that got me involved with mycology in the first place.

From the announcement:

Saturday Dec. 1, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 2, 12–5 p.m.
38th Annual Bay Area Fungus Fair

Get down to earth at the Oakland Museum of California’s 38th Annual Fungus Fair, the weekend of December 1-2. Meet many wild specimens, from the beautiful and poisonous to the medicinal, edible, and just plain weird.

Presented by the museum and the Mycological Society of San Francisco (MSSF), the Fungus Fair is open 10–6 p.m. on Saturday and 12–5 p.m. on Sunday. For a program of lectures and events. (PDF)

The weekend event is a rare chance to pore over displays of remarkable native mushrooms and see how they can be used to dye paper and clothing, treat cancer and HIV, and add flavor to many foods. Attend a slide talk or use a microscope. Highly recommended for curious kids! Mycologists will be on hand both days to answer questions and identify unknown specimens for visitors...

Mushroom munchers can learn to recognize and prepare edible fungi from cookbook and food vendors and the Fair’s popular cooking demonstrations. Local chefs will prepare dishes with fresh fungi in an outdoor kitchen on Saturday and Sunday.

Fungus-Filled Family Fun! Mushroom crafts and Fair tours for kids take place on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on Sunday from noon to 4 p.m.

Fair vendors will have fresh wild mushrooms, cultivation kits, books, clothing, posters, and other mushroom-centric items available all weekend.

Admission to the Fungus Fair is $8 general, $5 seniors/students with ID, and free for members, kids five and under, and Oakland City employees. A special two-day pass is available for $12 at
Were I not some 3,000 miles away, you can bet I'd be there.

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