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Gemstone Junction Draws Rock Lovers

Jun 01, 2016 09:32AM ● Published by Kelly Cannon

By Kelly Cannon | kelly@mycityjournals.com

Ogden - The Golden Spike Gem and Mineral Society rocked out during their 65th annual Gemstone Junction rock show. Held April 8 through 10 at the Weber County Fairgrounds, the show drew big crowds of rock and mineral lovers from across the state. 

“We’re an educational club that wants people to learn more about the rocks and geology in the area,” said Deborah Blake, a representative of the Golden Spike Gem and Mineral Society. 

The show featured 48 exhibits of rocks, gems and minerals that attendees could look at, jewelry makers presented demonstrations on their craft and demonstrations on how to polish rocks were available. 

“It’s a chance for people to come and learn,” Blake said. 

The rock show also had about 28 dealers who sold various rocks, minerals and gems. Prices ranged from a quarter to several hundred dollars.

The show also incorporated educational displays tied to the geology common core. 

“Classes can come in and the teacher can show them a sedimentary rock and a metamorphic rock,” Blake said. “We’ve made a real effort to engage people and we hope to be a resource to them.” 

Attendees also brought in rocks for identification. Blake said the group makes the best efforts to tell people what rock they have. 

The big draws at the event were the displays of opals and the wire wrappers. The wire wrappers demonstrated how they could wrap different stones in wire to make jewelry and other items. Display cases were also available to showcase different rocks and gems. This included a small cabin made out of petrified wood. 

A giant dinosaur skeleton puppet named Mr. Bones walked around through the show, much to the delight of the small kids. 

“It’s just something fun that the kids love,” Blake said. “He comes every year.”

Blake emphasized that the general public doesn’t really know what their society and their show is really about. 

“People think it’s just piles of rocks but some people go to extreme lengths to bring the best to the show,” Blake said. “You can see how something so plain can be turned into something so pretty. All it takes is a little polish and a little work and you have something really pretty. That’s the thrill of it. People love that surprise.” 

The Golden Spike Gem and Mineral Society was founded in the 1950s and meet every month. The group also hosts field trips to various locations around the state to collect different rock and mineral samples. Guest speakers also attend meetings. 

According to their website, the purpose of the society to stimulate interest in the collection of minerals and gem materials, and in the cutting and polishing of gem materials, and related arts. The society also actively protects gemstone and mineral resources for hobby use, including the location and acquisition of mining claims and properties for noncommercial purposes.   

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