Agriculture Food+Drink

Fantastic Fungi from Fun Guy Farm

from a family’s garage to a full-blown facility and business

John Straub, photos by Andrea Paulseth |

A MUSHROOM FOR EVERYONE. Fun Guy Farm began as a passion hobby and has now turned into a family business.
A MUSHROOM FOR EVERYONE. Fun Guy Farm began as a passion hobby and has now turned into a family business for Dustin Scholtz, left, and his father, Steve.

Listen, we get it: You or a loved one might not like the taste of mushrooms. Maybe you tried them as a pizza topping, or on a burger, and found that they just weren’t for you. These preconceptions about mushrooms are exactly what Fun Guy Farm would like to challenge.

“I think for many, many years there's always been a fear of mushrooms,” said Dustin Scholtz, head of production and sales at Fun Guy Farm. “And just because you don’t like a portobello or a button mushroom, it doesn’t mean that you might not like lion’s mane or an oyster – because there is quite a bit of difference in taste and texture.”

Fun Guy Farm’s mission to promote a variety of overlooked mushrooms began when Dustin’s father, Steve Scholtz, found an interest in growing lion’s mane mushrooms. Seeing that traditional log-growing would take up to a year, his own independent research allowed him to pick up a method that decreased production time to only six weeks. Then, with an excess of mushrooms, he brought them to local markets and found that the demand was quite high.

What began as a personal project quickly began to take the form of a full-blown business that started on the family’s property. The process of fruiting and sterilizing mushrooms took place in the garage and inoculation in the basement.

Recently, the family has been able to move into a new facility on Western Avenue in Eau Claire, where they now have the space for a full-scale operation to carry out their mission to the fullest extent. Now, by producing hundreds of pounds of food each week while only emitting a modest carbon footprint, their success is showing.

“We’re now, I think, starting to shift a little bit more into people starting to realize that, hey, not only are mushrooms good for you but there’s a lot of huge benefits,” Dustin explained. “You know, like boosting your immunity is probably the most well-known one … they’re also just delicious.”

Look for Fun Guy Farm at the Eau Claire Downtown Farmers Market as well as at farmers markets in Menomonie, Chippewa Falls, Barron, and Hudson this upcoming summer.

Keep up with Fun Guy Farm on Facebook and shop on their website.