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June 1, 2014

MARTINO: Anderson wins Mother of All Morels contest

Winning entry was 16 inches tall

To some, Logansport’s Sheila Anderson could be considered a “maniac” and her husband, Rex, agrees. Don’t think for a minute she is bent on causing destruction or hinges on the cusp of lunacy. It actually refers to her infatuation for hunting the delicious wild morel.

Sheila, now at the spry age of 55, has been searching for wild mushrooms since the age of 2 when she would accompany her parents. And through the years, she’s obviously gotten good at it.

“Each year I look so forward to spring I just can’t wait to begin hunting,” she explained. “I try to get out four or five days a week during the season.”

For about a month, when the weather begins to turn warm and new growth begins sprouting from the forest floor, she can usually be found poking through the underbrush in search of the tasty fungi.

“She is better than about anybody I know,” explained Rex. “She has such a good eye for it. If I get the chance to go and happen to find a few, I will call her over where she will find many more I have overlooked.”

This year her springtime hobby paid off as she was crowned the winner of WWKI’s 11th annual Mother of All Morels contest. Her entry stretched out at 16 inches tall. In addition to finding this year’s most mammoth mushroom, she took home a prize package valued at more than $500. On top of that, she earns a full year’s worth of bragging rights.

For Sheila, it was a typical day as she headed to a woodlot in search of the tasty morels.

“Each year seems to be a little different,” she explained. “Last spring I found quantity but most weren’t that big. This year I didn’t find as many but the ones I did find were big.

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