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Legislators tackle naming official state mushroom

February 28, 2006
By: Meghan Maskery
State Capital Bureau

ANCHOR INTROEveryone knows the state motto and flower, but Missouri could soon have a state mushroom added to the list.

In Jefferson City, Meghan Maskery (Mask-ury) has the story.

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A state legislator is trying to add an edible fungus to the list of official state symbols for school children to memorize.

St. Louis County republican Kathlyn Fares picked the lesser known chanterelle, over the more famous morel mushroom.

Maxine Stone, former president of the Missouri Mycological Society, said the chanterelle, not the morel, thrives in forests across the state.

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""This really isn't morel country. They do grow here and we do have our spots. We're not telling anybody our spots either.""

But three mushroom hunting legislators who have never seen a chanterelle questioned the selection.

Democratic Representative J.C. Kuessner voted against the bill and said it would be a travesty to pass over the morel and elect another specimen for the official mushroom.

From the Capitol, I'm Meghan Maskery.