Helpers needed for Fungi Fest

File photo Mycologist Paul Kroeger is one of the experts returning to host this year’s Fungi Fest in Sicamous, Sept. 21-24.

Preparations are underway for Fungi Fest 2017.

This unique Sicamous-based event, scheduled for Sept. 21 to 24, offers participants an opportunity to learn all about wild mushrooms, where to find them, which ones are good to eat, which to avoid and much more.

Once again, Joe Schmucks is onboard, hosting a meet-and-greet kick-off to the event on Thursday, Sept. 21. The evening will feature mushroom-oriented food specials and entertainment.

“It was a lot of fun last year. They did a good job,” said Fungi Fest organizer Deb Heap.

Sicamous’ Red Barn will be the hub of Fungi Fest for the rest of the weekend.

Activities scheduled throughout include guided walking tours and educational and culinary presentations.

Heap is grateful to see a host of familiar faces return for this year’s Fungi Fest to lead the walks and presentations. They include mycologist and long-time friend of Fungi Fest, Paul Kroeger, the Indiana Jones of mushrooms, Larry Evans, biologist and forest mushroom specialist, Tyson Elhers and Malakwa’s own mushroom expert, and mushroom hunter, Douglas Airey.

Evans and Ehlers will be leading day-long tours out in the region’s wilderness, while Kroeger will be hosting shorter walking tours as well as presentations.

Heap said a bus will be used this year to carry registered participants to their walking destinations.

“It means the experts will actually be able to talk to everybody on the bus going to and from wherever they’re going to start their hike,” said Heap. “So it will make it a little bit more informative and I think a bit more fun too.”

How Friday’s events shape up depends on advance registration, and Heap urges those interested in being a part of this year’s Fungi Fest to register asap.

Volunteers are also needed to help with the event.

To register online or for more information, visit www.fungifestival.com or email debheap@hotmail.com.