The Rochester Area Mycological Association (RAMA) was organized October, 1984, and held their first meeting at the Helmer Nature Center in Irondequoit, NY. This locale north of Rochester, and a few miles from the shore of Lake Ontario, served the club for a number of years.

Founding members included: Steve Daniel, Laramie Brown, William Hollenbaugh, and brothers Dave and Carl Wolf. This collection of mycophiles (people who love mushrooms) had been Inspired by Dr. Leo Tange, who, for a number of years, taught fungi classes at the Rochester Museum & Science Center.

Eventually, the students decided to move beyond the classroom and venture further into the world of fungi by forming a club to advance their interests. In this way, RAMA was born.

RAMA got started years ago when a group of people, with similar interests in wild mushrooms, got together and decided to form a club. Pretty basic, huh? That was more than 35 years ago!

Since then, RAMA has grown into a diverse group of people who share a common passion: Mushrooms.

RAMA members group photo at foray

RAMA is dedicated to the enjoyment (scientific and gastronomic) of wild mushrooms. Our members include those interested in mushrooms as wild edibles, photographic subjects, and/or objects of curiosity and study. Whatever the reason, as a group, we love mushrooms and we love being outdoors.

Class with mushrooms and microscopes on display

Everyone who is interested in wild mushrooms is welcome to join us and become a member of RAMA.“RAMA’s purpose is to provide a forum for cooperative study of the higher fungi. People who are actively interested in any aspect of mycology, are committed to conserving natural mycological environments by restrained and moderate collection practices, and are committed to safety in mycological pursuits, may find RAMA membership attractive.”During the year we have a series of monthly meetings, and members-only forays. A schedule of RAMA events is published in our quarterly newsletter, MycoPages.

Mushroom identification table at foray

Some mushrooms can be used as natural dyes, and some can even be used to help clean up the environment. Can you believe that? Mushrooms are amazing!