May 12-15, 2016
Each May, Boyne City, Michigan fills with hundreds of mushroom lovers from around the country who come seeking that elusive delicacy-the marvelous morel. Found in nearby woods and clearings, morels are favored by those who know their ‘shrooms. Boyne City has hosted the National Morel Mushroom Festival for 55 years.
For a few short days, everything is all about mushrooms. Restaurants prepare exotic, morel-laden entrees, local songsters sing of the morel (click on the player to the left to listen), secret hunting places (maybe) and recipes (definitely) are shared, and everybody goes on one of the mushroom hunts. A good year can yield hundreds of the mouth-watering treats. But even when a dry spell or late spring makes morels scarce, morels can be tasted at several tasting events and the festival is always fun for everyone.
The festival is always the weekend after Mothers Day and this year the festivities start on Thursday, May 12th and run through Sunday, May 15th.
Michigan’s mighty morel summons fans nationwide to Boyne City:
From Michigan Blue magazine: “After winter’s thaw, Boyne City starts the high season early with an annual event that finds thousands of tourists, hundreds of foragers and countless edible mushrooms popping up all over the area. The occasion is the National Morel Mushroom Festival held in May to celebrate the famed hometown specialty. And the chance to get in on the first taste of spring draws a mass of hopeful fans into town looking to unearth some precious bounty.”
In The Art of Cooking Morels, Ruth Mossok Johnston brings together more than 80 recipes for this delicacy, suitable for cooking with fresh mushrooms in season or dried year-round. The recipes, accompanied by stunning full-color illustrations, offer options for appetizers, soups, entrées, and side dishes from simple and elegant to exotic and sophisticated, and always mindful of highlighting the delicate morel.
Don’t miss Ruth’s Morel Cooking Class at 5 p.m. Saturday in the festival tent. Learn to make ricotta cheese and prepare morel wontons. $10 admission at the door.
THIS YEAR’S FESTIVAL HELPS SUPPORT
Jill Solomon, Boyne City $500
Emily Roloff, Charlevoix $250
Kaycie Overmyer, Boyne City $250
Kendra Balch, East Jordan $250
Callie Berish, East Jordan $250
Zachary Wandrie, Boyne City $250
Zachary Hankins, Charlevoix $250
“Taste of Morels” Winning
Restaurants & Dishes
Presented by the National Morel Mushroom Festival
The Boyne Area Chamber of Commerce