Gallery Talks

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Mushroom House Man
Alice McGinty & Sharon Smithem

DATE: Thursday, September 1, 2022

TIME:  1pm

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Join us in a talk with Alice B. McGinty and Sharon Smithem, the creators of the newly released picture book, Mushroom House Man: The Story of Earl A. Young and His Cottages of Stone. Learn the inspirations and story behind the creation of the book, as well as the tale behind the unique mushroom homes which enrich Charlevoix with their special magic.

The book and its creators have been featured on Stateside, a Michigan NPR show, along with the Charlevoix Courier and Petoskey News Review. The interview will be moderated by Jennifer Harsha Carroll, the book’s editor and Earl and Irene’s grandniece. Don’t miss this one-of-a-kind community event!


Purchase a signed book or limited illustration prints today in our Gift Shop - we ship too!


RSVP to reserve your seat at 231-547-3554 or


Alice B. McGinty, the award-winning author of over 50 fiction and nonfiction books for children, was introduced to the mushroom homes in 2017 and has been coming back to Charlevoix ever since. She now lives, part time, in an Earl Young created home and loves spending her time there, along with enjoying Charlevoix’s forests, sparkling blue lakes, and wonderful community.

Alice especially loves the art of writing biography, finding the story in a life and capturing the passion that drives people past their obstacles to great accomplishments. She hopes to inspire readers to follow their own passions and create their own stories.


Sharon Smithem lives in Charlevoix, along the shores of Lake Michigan. As a child you could find her sketching, sitting on a limb up in the ol’ willow tree in her backyard, her pencils in the tin can she nailed to a branch, and her drawing pad fastened to a pedestal she made. During daily rides on her bicycle, she was curious to find new and exciting places to sit and draw nature. Later on, Sharon attended Kendall College of Art and Design in Grand Rapids, Michigan and majored in illustration.

Her quest is always to search out the visual cues that create the emotional response to her artwork. Today she continues to explore and teach many art mediums, and passionately creates beauty wherever she goes.