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YACHATS — The Yachats Area Chamber of Commerce will sponsor the 20th Yachats Village Mushroom Fest, inviting mushroom lovers from near and far to come enjoy a weekend — fungi feast, to learn how to identify, grow, and cook choice edibles, and to understand more about the roles of fungi in forest ecology.

Beginning Friday evening, Oct. 18, and continuing through Sunday, Oct. 20, chefs at village restaurants will prepare special dishes featuring a variety of choice wild and cultivated mushrooms. On Saturday and Sunday, markets around town will offer wild and exotic cultivated mushrooms (fresh and dried), mushroom tools, specialty products, books signings and books on mushrooms, and local arts and crafts. The Yachats Farmers Market will be open 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday.

"In addition to a culinary wonderland," festival coordinator Bev Wilson says, "the weekend brings an impressive array of fun and serious learning opportunities under the umbrella, Ecology for Everyone," a title coined by one of the festival's founders, Marla Gillham. These opportunities include a speakers’ forum, expert led workshops and demonstrations, a mushrooms display, guided mushroom walks, and a Cape Perpetua Community Science Bioblitz. Admission to the displays, walks, and Biobliz are all Free, but the walks and bioblitz require pre-registration.

The mushrooms display will be held at the Yachats Lions Hall, provided and staffed by members of three mycological societies - Lincoln County Mycological Society, Cascade Mycological Society, and North American Truffling Society, as well as by experts who assist in identification. You will find fresh examples of both edible and toxic mushrooms here. In addition, 10-minute seminars will be offered covering important basics, such as how to do a spore print, how to tell the difference between chanterelles and false chanterelles, and how to identify different kinds of boletes.

Purchase a $5 festival wristband to attend the speakers' forum, workshops, and demonstrations. (Two workshops also have additional materials fees.) Wristbands may be purchased on-site during the festival weekend.

The speakers’ forum includes presentations by well-known mycologists Dr. Dan Luoma, Dr. Steven Carpenter, David Pilz, Dr. Matt Trappe, and Dr. Charles LeFevre. It will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Yachats Community Presbyterian Church., and then resume Sunday at the Little Log Church, 328 W 3rd St.

For a full schedule, visit yachats.org.

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