Mushrooms take over Kennett Square

Bring the kids to the Mushroom Festival to meet Fun Gus (get it?).
Bring the kids to the Mushroom Festival to meet Fun Gus (get it?)

From mushroom martinis to button mushroom ice cream, an array of funky fungus options will be served up this weekend at the 28th annual Mushroom Festival.

“When it happens, it’s like a big party, and I don’t want it to end,” says Kathi Lafferty, festival coordinator.

Known as the mushroom capital of the world, Kennett Square hosts the event that will draw nearly 200 vendors. Every year, growers from the region donate a portion of their harvest to the two-day festival. Proceeds are distributed to nonprofit organizations.

“We often sell over $10,000 worth of fresh mushrooms,” says Lafferty. “It’s amazing the taste of a fresh mushroom picked that day or the day before compared to what you can get in the grocery store.”

From portabellas to chanterelles, it won’t be hard to walk home with a wide variety of soil-to-table options. It won’t be hard to fill up on them before you leave, either.

“Our most popular item for the festival has to be our portabella fries,” says Jack Mavraj, head chef and co-owner of Kennett Square restaurant La Verona. He’s also hosting a cooking demo at the festival — check out his mushroom and short rib ragu with homemade pasta.

Cooling things down a bit, Kennett Square’s La Michoacana will serve up their signature ’shroom popsicle, an item owner Noelra Scharon says sells out early every year.

“We actually started offering them a few weeks early at our restaurant because people started asking for them,” Scharon says of the vanilla ice cream and button mushroom treat.

Fill up and then head on over to watch others stuff their faces with fried mushrooms at the event’s competitive eating contest. On Saturday, competitive eaters will see if can enough fried mushrooms to beat last year’s winning total of 5 ½ pounds in seven minutes. “That’s part of the mushroom party I’d rather watch than join,” Lafferty says.

Try this
Restaurateur Aimee Olexy is somewhat of a cheese guru in the Philadelphia area. Visit any of Olexy’s ventures — Talula’s Garden and Table — for cheeses galore. For the festival, she’ll be at Talula’s Table, in Kennett Square, serving up mushroom mac ‘n’ cheese all weekend long. “It’s like this bubbly, oozy, cheesy casserole with roasted mushrooms of all sorts throughout,” Olexy says. “People go nuts for it.”

Mushroom Festival
Saturday, 10 a.m.-7 p.m.
Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Kennett Square, PA
$2, free for kids under 12
www.mushroomfestival.org



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Brooklyn man charged in roommate's stabbing death

A Brooklyn man accused of violently stabbing his roommate to death on Monday is in police custody and faces murder charges.

International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

MLB

Angelo Cataldi: Ryan Howard deserves better from Phillies

Just last week, Ryan Howard endured the embarrassment of a benching that was inevitable, and yet still shocking.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.