Discover the magic of Crystal Falls’ Humongous Fungus Festival

by | Sep 2, 2023 | Michigan, Travel

Discover the magic of Crystal Falls’ Humongous Fungus Festival a heartwarming journey into hometown nostalgia and family fun


Get ready for our journey to the Humongous Fungus Festival in Crystal Falls, Michigan. It is a must for anyone searching for fungi, fun, and a dash of nostalgia! We were so pumped that we arrived an hour early—thanks, Central Time Zone—and scored the ultimate front-row seats for the parade.

Humongous Fungus Festival

I wanted to see the humongous fungus, a 2,500-year-old Armillaria gallica fungus colony stretching over 38 acres. I could feel it lurking in the Iron County forest as we drove into town. Since it was raining, we skipped guided foraging tours, and my opportunity to see it vanished. But we bought a fun “Humungus Fungus” T-shirt. 



With time to kill, we ate breakfast at a cozy diner called the New Leaf Bistro on the outskirts of town. Of course, we walked because we had to get in our steps, and along the way, we passed folks setting up yard sales. During breakfast, our waitress said, “You’ve got a doppelganger, Barbara Luck. She owns Charlie’s Emporium.” 


Vendor Village

After trekking across town for breakfast, we made it back to Crystal Falls Main Street. We still had time to kill before the parade. We strolled through the Vendor Village and shopped at the Ben Franklin store


Foraging for Treasures

Instead of foraging mushrooms, we foraged for treasures at Charlie’s Emporium. I also hoped to see Barbara Luck, my doppelganger. No luck in that department but we did learn how to order the 2023 Fungus Fest T-shirt designed by Stormie Weems.

Fungus Fest T-Shirts

You can order T-shirts and sweatshirts through the American Classic Sign Co. website or call 906-221-1424. The waitresses at the cozy diner where we ate breakfast were all wearing them. They were cute as hell. 

The Parade

Finally the parade! At the top of the hill in front of the Iron County Courthouse, a police car rounded the corner leading the procession. Candy flew out its windows. Kids and a few adults, myself included, eagerly scrambled to collect the candy. 



I’d forgotten the simple joy of gathering parade candy. Beside us, a young girl with a pink cast on her arm sat quietly in her stroller, seemingly hesitant to join the candy-collecting frenzy. Her grandparents encouraged her, but she seemed content just watching. So, I took the liberty of filling her small bag with candy tossed from fire trucks, floats, and vintage cars. It was a day filled with small, sweet moments.


Pie Social 

Oh, the Pie Social at Christ United Methodist in Crystal Falls was like stepping into a time machine! It whisked me back to the early ’70s when I last attended one with my Grandma Ruth. (Yep, I’m revealing my age here!) The vibe was so nostalgic, it felt like absolutely nothing had changed since those good ol’ days with Grandma. What a blast from the past!


Cars, Art, & Mushroom Burgers

Chuck, ever the car enthusiast, was practically vibrating with anticipation for the North Country Cruizers Car Show.


Plus there was a bit of art, festival-goers unleashed their inner Picassos with sidewalk chalk art.


Our grand finale? The Harbour House Museum, where volunteers grilled up mouthwatering mushroom burgers for a cause.


What a whirlwind of a day, filled with small joys, sweet moments, and a whole lot of fungus fun!



There are more pictures of our journey to the Humongous Fungus Festival. After you take a look, let us know what you think.

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