Due to icy road conditions, our meeting on the 12th of January is cancelled. Next meeting will be January 26th.
The club held it’s annual Awards Banquet and Inauguration Ceremony December 10th. A good time was had by all and the food was outstanding. Vivian Howard did a great job pulling the event together. Special thanks to to Cliff Vanderzanden for carving the delicious beef roast and to Colin Kaeder, who is not a member, for his culinary skill in preparing it. Colin smoked the roast for many hours prior to cooking it.
Everyone I spoke to raved about it’s flavor and how tender it was. You could cut it with a plastic fork!
We also had a raffle with some absolutely fabulous items. This year there were 34 items, so many attendees went home with a prize.
In addition to swearing in the officers for 2017, Awards for this past year were handed out.
Member of the Year: Rose Jackson
Presidents Award: Vivian Howard
Long and Outstanding Service Award: Carl Weaver
Congratulations to you all and thank you for all you do for us.
And finally, we want to congratulate Russel and Dorothy Snook, who celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary with us that night.
As we turn our attention to Fall events, I am reminded that it’s time to form a nominating committee to prepare for our Fall elections. If you can help out with this committee, please let me know. Being on the committee in no way makes you a candidate, but means you would be tasked with finding a suitable one. This is your club, so resolve to help it thrive and remain an organization that you want to be a part of by being involved in how it’s run.
It’s that time again and it’s time to be thinking of putting in a display at the Portland Regional Show, which will be October 7th, 8th and 9th. This is still the 2nd weekend of October, but will seem like it’s happening in the first week. Set up will be on the 5th and 6th, so please plan on coming out and helping with that.
Holiday Banquet planning
Hey… we need a planner for this event.
The results are in and the Tualatin Valley Rock and Gem Club is proud to announce we’ve won third place in the Northwest Federation of Mineralogical Societies website contest. The contest was open to all Federation member rock clubs within the states of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Utah and Washington, which comprise the NW Region of the American Federation.
“We’ve really come a long way considering only a few years ago we didn’t even have a web presence” Webmaster Mitch Metcalf Said. “So this is a really big deal for us and a huge honor.”
This was TVRGC’s first time entering the Federation’s annual contest. The First Place website was the the Yakima Rock and Mineral Club, which went on to compete at the American Federation Level. Results were not available as of this posting.
Congrats to all of the volunteers who worked so hard to ensure our site was a contender, bringing it up to date to be compliant with web standards and national and international laws for web accessibility and the ADA, way beyond the scope of the contest rules and requirements. We’re eager to keep you updated on all our activities and news from around the rock and mineral world as we continue to move forward.
Remember, you can subscribe to this site to receive email notifications when it updates by using the subscribe to site option in the sidebar.
If you have a smartphone, why not join others worldwide to help track earthquakes.
For the past few years, the US Geological Survey department and others want to know how cell phones can be used to monitor and possibly detect earthquakes. Inside of each phone are sensors that can be used to create a worldwide seismic network to help with the study of earthquakes.
A couple weeks ago, it was announced that The University of California at Berkely has released MyShake and MyQuake. MyShake is for Android users and MyQuake is the Apple version.
The app is free and runs “silently” in the background. The app has the ability to distinguish between natural body and transportation movements and ground disturbances. The goal of the app is to collect enough data to help track earthquakes in a way that may lead to a global early warning system.
The app offers four key features in addition to collecting and transmitting earth movement data to Berkeley.
- Recent: The Recent tab displays earthquake data globally with a magnitude of 2.5 or more within the past 7 days. Using a Google Map, the user may zoom around the globe to observer recent earthquake activity.
- Safety: Simple steps to ensure the user is familiar with how to take cover before, during, and after an earthquake.
- Senor: While mostly for fun, shake the phone around and you will see the phone’s senor record the movement.
- Past: This is another Google Map highlighting the most powerful and noteworthy earthquakes throughout known history, some dating back hundreds of years.
OPB-TV’s Oregon Experience honored Thomas Condon last week with his story. A preacher and pioneer geologist, Thomas Condon arrived in the Oregon Territory in 1853 and settled in The Dalles, and eventually became Oregon’s first state geologist and professor at Pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon, and later to the brand new University of Oregon in 1876.
Thomas Condon always loved geology. He subscribed to scientific journals and collected rocks and fossils wherever he lived. Townspeople, teamsters, and soldiers stationed at Fort Dalles knew of his great knowledge of geology and began bringing him fossils to examine and identify.
By 1865 Condon was accompanying the soldiers on trips into Oregon’s interior and was the first to recognize the scientific significance of the area now known as the John Day Fossil Beds – where nearly 50 million years of time are preserved.
The mid 1800s was considered the Golden Age of Paleontology. Scientists were in competition to discover fossil specimens that would support Charles Darwin’s new theory of evolution. Early on Condon had began corresponding with prominent East coast paleontologists and sent them fossil specimens he’d collected for identification. The paleontologists in turn had the status and money to write articles and get the new discoveries published in leading scientific journals.
Some of Condon’s most famous ancient discoveries included parts of small three-toed ancestors of the modern horse. Yale University professor O.C. Marsh called the fossils the “missing link” in horse evolution and would write significant papers on the subject using Condon’s fossil discoveries as part of the evidence.
Today, you can find Condon’s fossil collection at the University of Oregon, and explore the Thomas Condon Paleontology Center at the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument in Central Oregon.
If you were along the Oregon Coast over the past couple weeks, you would find an agate collector’s dream.
According to the The News Guard: Regional News, recent storms in a series this winter have exposed rock beds along the coastline as the sand is washed away by the high waves and current. This makes agate hunting there hot right now.
Laura Joki, Lincoln City rockhound and owner of the Rock Your World Rock Shop, 3203 SE Highway 101, broke down what makes an agate an agate.
“Silica is the second most common element, and that’s what agates are made of,” Joki said. “An agate is crypto-crystalline quartz or quartz in which the crystals are too small to see with the naked eye, even with a microscope hand lens. They are interconnected. Almost woven together.”
Agates are formed in ocean seams called amydales—bubbles formed during volcanic lava flow. The available silicas form into agate and jasper from surrounding volcanic materials, Joki said.
She added that from the 1930s to the 1950s, a particular form of agate, known as a sagenite agate, was considered valuable.
The article also noted that there are fossils, chert, jasper, petrified wood, and zeolites to be found along the exposed shoreline.