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Friends of Fungi: a Hiking, Foraging, & Mushroom Cultivation Retreat

September 08 - September 10, 2023

John Michelotti

Erwin Karl

Gabriela D’Elia

Aubrey Carter

From the largest living organism in the world to the creation of soil, fungi play an essential role for life on earth. They have been recycling and helping to heal the planet for centuries. Now we can partner with fungi to improve our lives through appreciating the food and medicines this extraordinary kingdom has to offer.Join John Michelotti this September for an all-levels mushroom cultivation and foraging weekend workshop at Menla Retreat and Dewa Spa in Phoenicia, New York.
Participants will create/inoculate and take home:- Indoor Oyster mushroom grow kit- Outdoor Winecap Mushroom Starter- Chaga tincture- Foraging hand lens and Mushroom journal- Deeper connection with fungi, nature, self, and friends
Come explore the interesting and ancient relationship fungi have with our world and our culture. Learn about kingdom fungi and mushrooms in history and as we currently know them. Discussions will include: biology and ecology of fungi, mushrooms as food and medicine, how fungal allies can create resilience in our agriculture and communities, gardening with mushrooms, and mushrooms to heal the planet.Through fun hands-on activities, learn low-tech methods to cultivate gourmet and medicinal mushrooms, identify and harvest wild mushrooms, and make mushroom medicines.To learn more about John Michelotti and his mycological offerings, please visit his website www.catskillfungi.com and enjoy an article from the New York Times.
ScheduleFriday, September 8
  • 3 - 6 pm Check-in
  • 6 - 7 pm Dinner
  • 7:30 pm Evening Program Intro and Welcome Circle
    • Evening Presentation: Mushrooms 101 – Biology and Ecology of Fungi - John
Saturday, September 9
  • 8 - 9 am Breakfast
  • 9:30 am - 12:15 pm Mushroom Walk: How to identify mushrooms
  • 12:30 - 1:30 pm - Lunch
  • 1:30 - 2:30 pm Break
  • 2:30 - 4 pm Afternoon Program 1
    • Outdoor Inoculation: Wine-cap in Wood chips & Slurry - John
    • Kombucha, fermentation & growing beneficial mycobiomes - Erwin
  • 4 - 4:30 pm - Break
  • 4:30 - 6 pm - Afternoon Program 2 - Keynote
    • Medicinal Mushrooms: Health for the Body, Mind, and Planet
    • Chaga Tincture making workshop
  • 6 - 7 pm - Dinner
  • 7:30 - 9 pm - Evening Program
    • Foraged Mushroom Collection Review
    • Indoor Inoculation: Oysters on Sawdust. Grow your own oyster kit. – Gabriela & Aubrey
    • Myco-Technologies - John
  • 9 pm - Optional: open discussion at fire pit. Music Jam (bring instruments)
Sunday, September 10
  • 7 - 11 am Check-out of Rooms
  • 8 - 9 am Breakfast
  • 9:30 - 11:30 am Morning Program
    • Mushroom Walk
    • Mushroom Cooking Class & Tasting
    • Closing Circle
  • 12:30 - 1:30 pm Lunch and Departure
*Please note that the schedule is subject to change at any time. 

ABOUT THE TEACHERs

John Michelotti

John Michelotti is the founder of Catskill Fungi which empowers people with fungi through outdoor educational classes, cultivation courses, mushroom art, and mushroom health extracts. John is a past president of the Mid-Hudson Mycological Association (MHMA) where he co-founded th...

Erwin Karl

Erwin Karl is a farmer, mycologist and educator who has led walks and workshops for Catskill Fungi and Mid Hudson Mycological Association. He serves as site manager at the CycleX farm in Andes, NY where he has been involved in building maintenance, construction and agriculture fo...

Gabriela D’Elia

Gabriela D’Elia is the Director of the Fungal Diversity Survey (FunDiS), VP for Mushroom Society of Utah, Project Leader for FunDiS Local Project Northern Utah Funga, and founder of her company Moon Mushrooms, which focuses on holistic mycology, crafting tiny batch tinctures, a...

Aubrey Carter

Aubrey graduated from Indiana University in 2016 with a BS in Biology. He has worked at several different ecological institutions in and around the NYC area, including the Central Park Conservancy, the Westchester Land Trust, the Stamford Land Conservation Trust, and Sleepy Cat F...

UPCOMING EVENTS

MENLA

375 Pantherkill Road, P.O. Box 70 Phoenicia, NY 12464
frontdesk@menla.org