The Houby Days Festival is an annual event held in the Historic Czech Village in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Houby (pronounced hoe-bee) is the Czech word for mushrooms.
Hunting them is a major activity for Czechs and Slovaks and they gather them by the basket full. Once they are gathered the ones that are not eaten immediately, are dried, frozen or pickled. They are collected from early in the spring until late in the fall and the woods are always full of mushroom pickers. It is a family activity so children usually know by the time the age of ten which mushrooms to pick and which mushrooms not to touch.
One of the most common mushrooms you will see at Houby Days is the Morel mushroom. Morel (Morchella) is a type of edible mushroom. These distinctive mushrooms appear honeycomb-like in that the upper portion is composed of a network of ridges with pits between them. They are prized by gourmet cooks, particularly for French cuisine. Commercial value aside, morels are hunted by thousands of people every year simply for their taste and the joy of the hunt.
Here in Cedar Rapids, we celebrate the tradition and all that it means to the Czech and Slovak. Houby are not only a source of food, but the hunt is also a fun family activity. At our Houby festival, we strive to bring a fun family day, filled with music, games, activities, and Czech-Slovak heritage.
This year’s Houby Days Festival will take place the weekend of May 16-18. During the weekend, you can enjoy carnival games and rides, live music, dancing, vendors, delicious food, a houby contest, and much more! Come join the fun!
information found on the http://czechvillagecedarrapids.com/
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