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Pictured about is crystallized copper from the Ray Mine in Arizona, an example of the copper that will be on display at the Rock, Gem, Mineral and Fossil show at Western March 9 and 10.
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Rock, Gem, Mineral and Fossil Show Set for March 9-10 at WIU

February 21, 2013

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MACOMB, IL – The 33rd annual Rock, Gem, Mineral and Fossil Show will be held in the University Union Grand Ballroom Saturday, March 9 and Sunday, March 10.

This year's event, themed, "Copper and Associated Minerals," runs from 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday. The event is open free to the public.

The show is planned by Geodeland Earth Science Clubs, Inc. (GESCI) of west central Illinois and will include dealers in minerals, fossils, jewelry and equipment; a silent auction; rock, mineral, fossil and artifact identification; games and prizes; lapidary demonstrations; earth science displays and geode cracking. Demonstrations are also planned in bead stringing, mineral identification, egg and rock painting, wire-wrapping, flint knapping, glass bead making, lampwork, cabochon finishing, glass fusing, pen barrels turned on a lathe and faceting gemstones.

Kids who stop at the registration desk will receive two free tickets - one for a free spin at the spin and win game and the other for a free turn at a fossil dig.

In keeping with this year's theme, programs will be presented by Pam and Steve Hecht, who live and collect in Michigan's Keweenaw Peninsula, as well as Keith Peregrine, who has collected in the Upper Peninsula and Dean Stone, who has collected and studied the history of Michigan's Upper Peninsula for many years.

A special exhibit will include examples of copper specimens and minerals associated with copper, many of which were collected in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

Saturday's events will also include tours of the Geology Museum in WIU's Tillman Hall from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. The museum features a T-Rex skull, a life size Ophthalmosaurus and a life size reconstruction of a Tully Monster.

The GESCI was created in 1980 to organize and promote a gem and mineral show each year. The first show was held in 1981 at Western.

GESCI includes seven clubs from west-central Illinois: Central Illinois Gem and Mineral Club of Decatur; Edwards River Earth Science Club of Aledo; Fulton County Rockhounders of Canton; Lincoln Orbit Earth Science Club of Springfield; Peoria Academy of Science, Geology Section; West Central Illinois Rock and Mineral Club of Macomb and Worthen Earth Searchers of Hancock County in Carthage. The GESCI was created in 1980, and Western Illinois University has been the only site of the gem and mineral show since its inception in 1981.

For more information about the show, contact event chairperson George Coursey at

Posted By: WIU News (
Office of University Relations