Fungus Among Us
Photo by James Holkko
The Whistler Naturalists would like to thank everyone who participated in our 17th annual Fungus Among Us Mushroom Festival.
We started off the festival by visiting 23 classes at the local schools on Thursday and Friday and taking most on field trips in the woods. The students all seemed to enjoy hunting for mushrooms just as much as Easter eggs! Some were searching for the smallest mushrooms; some were seeking out mushrooms that would be suitable for making spore prints and some were just seeing what was out there! Thanks to very special guests Kevin Trim, Ben Hircock, Andy MacKinnon, Paul Kroeger, Bryce Kendrick, Erin Feldman, Ruth Joy, Cody Labossiere and Shayn McAskin.
We couldn't run the festival without our fabulous mushroom gurus who gave talks, led walks, and labelled and presided over the mushroom display. Special thanks to the Friday night presenters: Veronica Woodruff (Edible mushrooms!), Adolf and Oluna Ceska (Fungi inventory of Observatory Hill – 1,420 species and counting!), Andy MacKinnon (Why care about fungi? Part 1) and Thom O’Dell (Why care about fungi? Part 2). Also, thanks to the audience for bringing in diverse fungi for the BYOM (bring your own mushroom) competition.
The Saturday morning forays brought back a huge diversity of mushrooms for the afternoon display tables. At least 200 species were found (some still to be ID’d), of which at least 21 are new to our list. This year’s results bring the total number of mushrooms now documented by the Whistler Biodiversity Project to over 900!
Our popular gourmet wild mushroom tasting wouldn't have been possible without the great expertise and wonderful creativity of Chef Bruce Worden, Nester’s Market and Milestones.
Thanks also to the amazing group of volunteers who made it happen and all the folks that came out to share their enthusiasm and wonder for all things fungal.
Finally, the Whistler Naturalists would also like to thank our key sponsors: The Community Foundation of Whistler, AWARE and RMOW. Thanks also to Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Whistler Library, Ecologyst, Toad Hall Studios, Avalanche Pizza and the Whistler Biodiversity Project.
See you next year, as always, the weekend after Thanksgiving.
Thanks to Joern Rohde for these photos:
Thanks to Sabrina Hinitz for these photos: