Erika Lindwall 8th Day Interview – Humongous Fungus Festival, August 3rd – 5th in Crystal Falls

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Erika Lindwall 8th Day Interview - Humongous Fungus Festival, August 3rd – 5th in Crystal Falls, Michigan

Erika Lindwall 8th Day Interview – Humongous Fungus Festival, August 3rd – 5th in Crystal Falls, Michigan

CRYSTAL FALLS, MI – The 27th Annual Humongous Fungus Festival, slated for August 3rd through the 5th in Crystal Falls, Michigan, has a renewed focus on the benevolent fungus for which the festival was named. The weekend-long event will feature a new version of the jaw-dropping 100 square foot mushroom pizza, guided mushroom forages, live music and entertainment all weekend, food vendors cooking up amazing mushroom dishes, free kids games & crafts, a craft & vendor market, softball tournament and more.

Topics Discussed:

  • The Great Mushroom Cook-Off
  • Fungus Fest Vendor Village
  • City-Wide Rummage Sales
  • Fungus Fest Talent Show
  • Fungus Fest Parade
  • Guided Foraging Tours
  • Community Value of the Festival


“The fact that Crystal Falls has this incredibly unique mycological asset is definitely something worth celebrating and telling the world about,” said Erika Lindwall, Event Coordinator and Chamber Director for the Iron County Economic Chamber Alliance. “This year we wanted to bring the focus back to the fungus.”

The Humongous Fungus, spread over more than 37 subterranean acres near Crystal Falls, is the world’s largest, oldest, contiguous living organism. It is an Armillaria gallica fungus, also known as a “honey mushroom” or “shoestring mushroom.” It was discovered in 1988, weighs in at an estimated 200,000 pounds and is between 1,500 to 10,000 years old. The Humongous Fungus Festival, celebrating this now famous fungus, gained national attention in the mid-1990’s and was even featured on Late Night with David Letterman. It has remained a popular event drawing large crowds and followers from around the nation every year.

The festival begins on Friday, August 3rd with the Great Ball Race down Crystal Avenue at 5:00 p.m. and the Fungus Fest Parade at 5:30 p.m., which will proceed down Superior Avenue. Any group or business is welcome to participate in the parade, and line up begins at 4:30 p.m. in the Forest Park School parking lot. The Grand Marshall of the parade will be the Blooze Brothers Band who will put on a concert at the Crystal Theatre following the parade at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are $15.00 for adults and $5.00 for Students and can be purchased online, at the Chamber office or at the door. Also following the parade will be the traditional Fin Vs. Pollack softball game at Runkle Lake.

On Saturday, event attendees will enjoy sampling all kinds of different mushroom-themed dishes from local restaurants and the Humongous 100 ft2 Mushroom Pizza which will be served up for free, though donations to help cover the cost of the new pan are appreciated. Mushroom foraging experts will lead two guided mushroom foraging trips at 9:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. Registration is required for the guided forages and transportation will be provided. There will also be free kids games and crafts, city-wide rummage sales, and a softball tournament at Runkle Lake Park.

On Saturday evening from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. there will be a talent show featuring local musicians and other performing artists. Anyone with a family-friendly talent to share is welcome to sign up for a time slot and it’s free to enter. Then from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. begins the street dance, beer tent and more food along with live music from Paul Sundquist and Marquette based funk/jam band, Not Quite Canada.

The festivities wrap up on Sunday evening with a performance from the Ole and Lena Live, a Scandinavian comedy group, at the Crystal Theatre at 7:00 p.m. “Come to the festival to celebrate this unique, ancient lifeform, and dance and eat your way through all things fungus,” encouraged Lindwall.

More information, including registration forms and a detailed schedule of events, can be found at or by calling the Iron County Economic Chamber Alliance at (906) 265-3822.

The Iron County Economic Chamber Alliance is a Michigan 501(c)(6) non-profit, tax-exempt organization and is governed by a local board of trustees. Funding for the Alliance comes from the generous support of many of Iron County’s governmental units, private businesses, as well grant funding. The mission of the Alliance is to develop and steward a spirit of economic vitality that results in Iron County becoming a center of collaboration, innovation, investment, and entrepreneurial opportunity. Visit the Alliance online at

Humongous Fungus Festival, August 3rd – 5th in Crystal Falls, Michigan

Humongous Fungus Festival, August 3rd – 5th in Crystal Falls, Michigan

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