If you grew up a dinosaur fan like me, then you probably remember the release of 1993′s Jurassic Park as being a cinematic game changer! Not only did it feature the most REAL looking dinosaurs ever to stomp the Silver Screen, but also ones that were (at the time) the most scientifically accurate. Gone were the days of two-legged, meat-eaters like Tyrannosaurus Rex standing up straight while dragging its tail behind him as Steven Spielberg proved that CGI effects (when done correctly) were the wave of the future. This past weekend not only saw the re-release of that film (in a new 3D format), but also the opening of an animatronic dinosaur exhibit at Chicago’s Brookfield Zoo! What a wonderful time to be a dino-geek…especially one living near The Windy City!
Last Sunday, I grabbed the kids and headed over to the town made infamous by the Svengoolies – Berwyn, Illinois – to observe a rather unusual event. The Annual “Houby” parade has taken place for over forty years now and, along with the National horror host, has become a local Berwyn tradition! For those scratching their heads wondering what a “Houby” is, it is the Czechoslovakian word for “mushroom.” Yes, you are reading this correctly, the entire parade is dedicated to mushrooms! Mushrooms and truffles are to the Czechs’ what the tomato is to the Italians. It is a big part of their culture and it should also be noted that other “Houby” events take place throughout the year in other places throughout the United States.