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38th Annual
Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi Gras

38th Annual
Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi Gras

Memorial Day Weekend
May 27-28, 2017
Downtown Morgan Hill

38th Annual
Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi Gras

38th Annual
Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi Gras

Memorial Day Weekend
May 27-28, 2017
Downtown Morgan Hill

38th Annual
Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi Gras

38th Annual
Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi Gras

Memorial Day Weekend
May 27-28, 2017
Downtown Morgan Hill

38th Annual
Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi Gras

38th Annual
Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi Gras

Memorial Day Weekend
May 27-28, 2017
Downtown Morgan Hill

About Us


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Who We Are

Board of Directors

Dan Sullivan - President
 Ron Woolf - Treasurer/Secretary/Scholarships
Bob Benevento – Beer/Volunteers
Mike Bergkamp – Finance
Claire Cretin – Arts & Crafts
Rich Firato – Mardi Gras Stage Entertainment
Devon Spencer – Onsite Office Manager
Jim Tarp – Logistics, Electrical, Janitorial
Rick Zvolanek – Food 

Committee

Kimberly Beare – Sponsors
Michael Brookman – Security & Safety
Pat Curtis – Depot Street Stage
Lynn Liebschutz – Trash Handling
Larry Montarbo – Wine
Terry & Tom Moriyama – Signage
Bobbi Jo Palmer – First Aid
Bev Stenehjem – Wine Tasting Event
Kathy Sullivan – Volunteers
Karen Tarp, Cooking Stage/Decorations
Brett Welch – Set-up & Tear Down 

Non-Profit Volunteer Participants

Live Oak High School Football
Sobrato High School Grad Night
Live Oak High School Athletic Boosters
Sobrato High School Athletic Boosters
Sobrato Music Foundation
Live Oak High School Volleyball
Live Oak HS Girls Basketball
Sobrato Cheer
Live Oak High School FBLA
Morgan Hill Masonic Lodge
Boy Scouts Troop 730
Kiwanis Morgan Hill   

Staff

Sunday Minnich
Executive Director
Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi Gras
Mailing Address: 409 Tennant Station, #150
Physical Address: 224 Tennant Station Road
Morgan Hill, CA 95037
Telephone: 408-778-1786
Fax: 408-782-0030
E-mail: info@mhmmg.com
Website: www.mhmmg.com          

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Our Historical Journey

 

After  36 years of passion and commitment to the Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi  Gras Festival, our beloved founder, Brad Spencer passed away last July.  As the founding father, Brad continued to serve on the Board of  Directors for 36 years and was as involved in the planning and  preparation as he was with the first annual festival. It  was in 1978 that the state overwhelmingly approved proposition 13,  which reduced property taxes for California residents. Almost  immediately, Morgan Hill Fire Chief Brad Spencer saw an already lean  capital expense budget whither away to nothing. “We were down to barely  affording light bulbs, PG&E bills – the bare essentials,” Spencer  said. With  the City’s population growing by leaps and bounds, Spencer searched  frantically for a way to keep up with the increasing demand for fire  protection. The department tried various fund raisers – dances, dinners,  and other small endeavors. “But when we found out how much money was  raised after all the stress and work involved,” Spencer said, “it would  have been easier to go around and ask each firefighter for $10. It just  wasn’t worth it”.  Still  looking for a one-time fund raiser to buy sorely needed equipment,  Spencer took inspirations from a weekend trip to the annual Charles  Dickens Christmas Faire in San Francisco. “I’m what you call a festival  junkie,” Spencer said. “After the fair, I thought ‘this is just what I  want to do in Morgan Hill for the Fire Department.’ “So we (Chief  Spencer and his firefighters) sat around the table and came up with this  festival”.  Spencer,  along with Irv Perlitch, owner of Hill Country and Ed Lazzarini, put on  the first Mushroom Mardi Gras in October 1980, which was a huge  success. A net profit of $400,000 was raised and divided between  non-profit organizations and new fire equipment for the fire department.  After two years, the festival was moved from October, to Memorial  Weekend, due to cold weather and the threat of rain.  Hill  Country was home to the Mardi Gras for the first seven years. It moved  to Cochrane Road for two years, where a shopping center now exists,  before moving to Community Park, finding a home from 1989 to 2004. In  2005, due to construction and remodeling at Community Park, the Mardi  Gras was once again forced to move from the place they called home for  15 years, to Downtown Morgan Hill. The first two years moving downtown,  the festival was located on Monterey Road between Main & Dunne but  soon became too large and had to move to its now permanent home, the  Community & Cultural Center Grounds and Depot Street from Dunne to  Second Street.  Over  the past 38 years, the Morgan Hill community has seen the Mushroom  Mardi Gras evolve from a small hometown get together to a festival that  is now attended by 70,000 – 80,000 people throughout the Bay Area and  beyond. While proceeds from the festival still support many non-profit  clubs and organizations, the majority goes towards scholarships to high  school seniors in the Morgan Hill Unified School District. As  a dedication to our founding father and this year’s festival, we have  awarded two special Brad Spencer Memorial Scholarships which will be  awarded with the other 50 scholarship recipients at the Amphitheater  Stage on Sunday at 1:30pm. Brad, you will always be in our  hearts and your memory will live on with each Mushroom Mardi Gras  Festival.  

 

Our Mission

  As a non-profit, 501(C)3, charitable organization, the purpose of the  Morgan Hill Mushroom Mardi Gras is to provide educational scholarships  to seniors living in the Morgan Hill Unified School District. The  festival also supports many non-profit clubs and organizations by either  donating money for their volunteer services or providing booths for  their own fundraising efforts.  Over the past 37 years, we have provided  over $1,000,000 in scholarships.