Mushroom Festival 2024


The North Texas Mycological Association is proud to present “MushFest 2024”, the only Texas Mushroom Festival entirely focused on the mushrooms! This event will be centered around all aspects of mycology, including mushroom identification, cooking, and cultivation! MushFest 2024 will be held on 100 beautiful acres of private property dedicated to self-sustainable agriculture in Athens, Texas from May 17th-19th (Exact address and instructions will be downloadable after purchase.)

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NTMA Texas Mushroom Festival 2024 will be a Potluck & Gathering style mushroom festival where we will be setting up our kitchen in the woods to feed participants throughout the weekend and are asking attendees to please bring something to share with fellow mycophiles. Our goal is to serve mushroom infused, gourmet meals throughout the event and are requesting donations to our kitchen. We are always looking for volunteers who know how to handle themselves in the kitchen! If you have some mushrooms stashed away somewhere, please bring them so we can cook them up. MushFest is an all-inclusive mushroom festival, meaning that meals will be provided throughout the weekend and camping is included if you purchase the weekend pass at no additional cost. This year, we are offering Saturday Day Passes available for those that cannot get away for the weekend, as well as kid passes and kid forays to help bolster the family experience. As a non-profit, we strive to provide the best experience possible while keeping cost of admission as low as we can. That being said, we are pouring what we generate from ticket sales back into this experience with a goal of making it one to remember for years to come!

Participants have the choice of attending two optional, add-on workshops held Saturday that will cost an additional $20 each. 

Once you purchase a ticket you will receive a follow-up email with additional instructions, the festival schedule, and the address of the venue. We have a jam-packed schedule with nine presentations from some of the top experts in mycology coming together to share their knowledge with you!

Cost Breakdown: 
Kids under 10 are FREE with Purchase of Saturday Day Pass or Weekend Pass.

Saturday Day Pass (No Camping Included)

  • $40 – Members (Kids)
  • $55 – Non-Members (Kids)
  • $70 – Members (Adult)
  • $85 – Non-Members (Adult)

Saturday Activities Include:

    • Breakfast, Lunch & Gourmet Dinner with Cooking Demonstration
    • 6+ Hours of Foray Time, Kids Forays & Ultraviolet Foray
    • Presentation by Alan Rockefeller: “Decoding the Forest Floor: The Art of Mushroom Recognition”
    • Presentation by Dr. Denis Benjamin: “Understanding Poisonous Mushrooms”
    • Live Music + Social Hour with Snacks
    • Optional $20 Add-On Workshop – Lions Mane Cultivation + Take Home Kit
    • Optional $20 Add-On Workshop – Microscopy Workshop

General Weekend Pass (includes camping and access to all activities except the optional, add-on workshops.)

  • $115 – Members (Adults)
  • $60 – Members (Kids)
  • $130 – Non-Members (Adults)
  • $70 – Non-Members (Kids)

All Access VIP Weekend Pass + Dinner with Speakers – LIMIT 10 – ( Includes Both Workshops & Private Dinner with Speakers Sunday night)

  • $180 – Members
  • $200 – Non-Members

Additional information

Select Ticket Type

Adult Weekend Pass, Child 10+ Weekend Pass, Adult DAY Pass, Child 10+ DAY Pass, VIP Weekend Pass

Optional Workshops

  • Optional $20 Add-On Workshop – Lions Mane Cultivation + Take Home Kit
  • Optional $20 Add-On Workshop – Microscopy Workshop

Join NTMA President Sebastian Tabibi in the first workshop as he presents on how to cultivate the “Lions Mane” mushroom, or Hericium erinaceus! Those attending this workshop will have an opportunity to build their own “Lions Mane” grow kit to take home with them after the presentation. In the second workshop, Dr. Amy Honan will introduce participants to the wonders of microscopy. Mushroom identification often involves working with a microscope to look at spores. This course involves highlighting various parts of a microscope and how to use them, followed by focusing on various microscopic fungal structures. Attendees will then practice making wet mounts of mushrooms collected during the festival and using various stains and reagents commonly used in mushroom identification. This workshop is geared towards beginners and all levels are welcome to join!


Friday, May 17th

3:00pm – Registration starts – Camping & Vendor Area Opens

4:00-5:30pm – Early Bird Foray @ Presentation Area

5:30-7:00pm – Potluck Dinner + Social Hour (Presentation Area)

7:00-8:00pm – KEYNOTE LECTURE by Dr. Amy Honan – “A Fungal Odyssey: Unveiling the Mysteries of Mushroom Movement Through Space and Time”

8:00-9:00pm – Presentation by Alan Rockefeller – “Fungi Light Show: The World of Bioluminescent and Fluorescent Mushrooms”

9:00-10:00pm – UV Foray – Outside of Presentation Area

9:00-12:00am – Social Hour + Food & Live Music (Kitchen & Presentation Area)



Saturday, May 18th

8:00-9:00am – Breakfast in the Woods (Kitchen Area)

9:00-11:30am – Morning Forays @ Presentation Area– Split into Kids Group & Adults

11:30am-1pm – Lunch in the Woods – Fried Oyster Mushroom Stir Fry

1:00-5:30pm – Afternoon Forays @ Presentation Area & Vendors Open to those Not Attending Workshops

1:00-3pm – $20 OPTIONAL ADD-ON WORKSHOP – “How to Grow Lions Mane + Build your Own Kit” – Presented by Sebastian Tabibi 

3:00-5:30pm – $20 OPTIONAL ADD-ON WORKSHOP – “Introduction to Microscopy” – Presented by Dr. Amy Honan 

5:30-7:00pm – Three Course Gourmet Mushroom Infused Dinner Demonstration by Spike Mikulski (Maitake Falafels, Wood Ear Tabouleh, and Black Trumpet Arancini)

7:00-8:00pm – Presentation by Dr. Denis Benjamin – “An Introduction to Mushroom Poisoning”

8:00-9:00pm – KEYNOTE LECTURE by Alan Rockefeller – “Decoding the Forest Floor: The Art of Mushroom Recognition”

9:00-10:00pm – UV Foray – Outside of Presentation Area

9:00pm-12:00am – Social Hour + Food & Live Music (Kitchen & Presentation Area)


Sunday, May 19th

8:00-9:00am – Breakfast in the Woods

9:00-11:00am – Final Foray – Split into Groups (Kids & Adults)

11:00-12:00pm – Presentation by Spike Mikulski – “An Afternoon with Amanita”

12:00-1:30pm – Lunch in the Woods

1:30-2:30pm – Presentation by Dr. Clark Ovrebo – “Introduction to Fleshy Mushrooms”

2:30-3:30pm – Specimen Walkthrough/Final Announcements

4:00pm – Event Finished – Remaining Participants Must Leave


Dr. Amy Honan

Amy received her B.S. in Biochemistry from Western Colorado University in Gunnison, CO where she studied population genetics of the root pathogen Armillaria. She went on to San Francisco State University for her M.S. While there, she studied the saprophytic mushroom genus Tetrapyrgos from SE Asia. She completed her Ph.D. at University of Washington where she studied the ecology, evolution, and biogeography of the stalked puffball Tulostoma. She currently teaches Mycology and Fungal Ecology for Oregon State University. In addition, she is the co-founder of the Crested Butte Botanic Garden in Crested Butte, CO and is the curator of their fungal collection.

Presenting On:

‘A Fungal Odyssey: Unveiling the Mysteries of Mushroom Movement Through Space and Time’

Fungi employ a myriad of strategies to disperse and colonize new environments. Fungal dispersal is a crucial to life cycles, influences fungal distribution, genetic diversity, and drives adaptations to changing environmental conditions. Therefore, dispersal contributes to fungal ecological significance and success. We will explore how fungi move through and manipulate the environment to ensure their continued success.


Dr. Denis R. Benjamin

Denis R. Benjamin grew up in South Africa, emigrating to the Pacific Northwest in 1970. He practiced pediatric pathology at the children’s hospitals in Seattle, Washington and Fort Worth, Texas. He became an amateur mycologist soon after his arrival in the USA. He is a Research Associate at the Botanic Research Institute of Texas in Fort Worth. He was a consultant to the regional poison control center, a former member of the Board of Trustees of the Puget Sound Mycological Society and a past Chairman of the Toxicology Committee of the North American Mycological Association. He is frequent speaker at mushrooms clubs and societies. In addition to nearly 100 professional publications, he has contributed to the lay literature and mushroom magazines. He was a community Op/Ed writer for the Fort Worth Star Telegram. He is author of the landmark book on the health effects of mushrooms (Mushrooms: Poisons and Panaceas) and published a collection of mushroom foraging essays (Musings of a Mushroom Hunter: A Natural History of Foraging). He is also a watercolorist focusing on fungi and botanical art. He was recently featured in 360West Magazine –


Alan Rockefeller

Alan is a mycologist specializing in DNA barcoding, field photography, and fungal microscopy. Committed to his cause, Alan has been studying fungal diversity for more than two decades, and since 2001 he has photographed more than 2,500 species of fungi. In order to discover new fungi, and spark interest in the hearts and minds of those new to the field, Alan regularly leads forays all over North America, including Mexico where he has been studying the mushroom diversity for 15 years and is consequently bilingual. Alan’s contributions to community science have been widespread, and his dedication to teaching thousands of people over several years how to extract and amplify the DNA of their mushroom finds for sequencing is remarkable, and remains unparalleled. 

As of today, Alan has uploaded more than 700 of his own fungal DNA sequences to Genbank, and he is a co-author on several scientific papers, including publications documenting new species of bioluminescent Mycena and Psilocybe. Alan is also devoted to the art of macroscopic mushroom identification and legitimately spends hours each day identifying mushrooms for the general public. Amazingly, he has identified over 300,000 fungi on websites like iNaturalist, Mushroom Observer, and various Facebook Groups. Nothing short of a powerhouse, Alan Rockefeller is an authority on the leading edge of mycology, who is beloved by his community for the knowledge and value he contributes to the field.


 Dr. Clark Ovrebo

Dr. Clark Ovrebo is a Professor of Biology at the University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond. His interest is in the taxonomy and ecology of the higher fleshy fungi, mainly the mushroom-type fungi. His research interests include the genus Tricholoma in North and Central America, diversity of fungi of Oklahoma, southeast Texas and the Gulf Coast region, lowland fungi of Central and South America, the Atlantic Forest of Brazil, oak forests of Colombia and Costa Rica, and fungi of pre-montane forests of western Panama. He is co-scientific advisor for the Gulf South Mycological Society.


Spike Mikulski

Spike is the Executive Chef at Pot au Feu Bistro in Providence, Rhode Island where he gets to prepare & serve foraged ingredients you can’t find on any other menu in New England. Spike is Rhode Island’s first mushroom forager approved by the state to sell wild mushrooms commercially & teaches the state’s certification program once a year for those also interested in foraging mushrooms for local restaurants and markets.

Spike’s main focus with mushrooms over the past decade has resided in the study of Amanita where knowledge of the dangers found within the genus is not only useful in regards to culinary attributes, but also applicable when approached with accidental ingestion of toxic members in poisoning cases where an identification is needed before proceeding with treatment.

Spike can be found on Facebook assisting others with mushroom identification (primarily in the emergency poisons identification for plants and mushrooms group), Instagram where he highlights dishes he’s created, and on Youtube where his channel contains dozens of videos showing the identification traits of Amanita species found in New England.


Sebastian Tabibi

Sebastian Tabibi is an amateur chef and mycologist dedicated to raising awareness about the vital roles that fungi have in our ecosystem. He has a particular interest in understanding and unlocking the medicinal benefits of fungi and has been mapping out the fungal biodiversity located in the North Texas area and beyond since 2012. Sebastian is the Founder and President of the North Texas Mycological Association, the only non-profit organization dedicated to all things fungal serving 7.5 million North Texans. Prior to creating the North Texas Mycological Association, Sebastian founded the Facebook groups, Mushroom Identification Page and Mushroom Edibility & Discussion.  He regularly assists in the emergency identification of Poison cases worldwide in the Facebook group, Poisons Help: Emergency Identification for Mushrooms & Plants, and can be seen leading forays at mushroom festivals from Colorado to the Gulf Coast.

Sebastian enjoys spending his free time being immersed in nature, making music, building community, fostering connection with the Earth, and practicing permaculture. He lives in a tiny home on 5 acres at the Tree of Life intentional community and is currently involved in creating an eco-village of self-sustainable properties along the Red River.


Camping is included on the property for each ticket holder or you can arrange lodging by contacting one of the hotels found on the list below.

Available Lodging Nearby:


Super 8 Athens

15 min drive – 205 US Hwy 175 W, Athens, TX 75751 – (903) 675-7511


Best Western Plus Royal Mountain Inn & Suites

14 min drive – 1814 State Hwy 31 E, Athens, TX 75751 (903) 292-1750


Best Western Canton Inn

19 mins drive – 2251 N Trade Days Blvd, Canton, TX 75103 – (903) 567-6591