Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Tri-Fecta At The Antelope Valley Fair

Kudos' to Del Air members Richard Haering, Chris Ward and Bob Knox for continuing their first place winning streak with their display cases at the 70th Annual Antelope Valley Fair.

This is Richard Haering's first year submitting a competitive case. His display of metamorphic rock slices has won first place in both the CFMS and Antelope Valley Fair shows. Way to go Richard!!! In addition to winning the first place prize in each of their respective classes, Chris Ward was also awarded the "Judges Choice" prize for his display of world-wide geodes and Bob Knox walked off with the esteemed "Best in Show" prize for his display of incredible Stromatolites.

We also have our Del Air club case on display as well.

The fair is open daily and runs thru Monday September 1st, 2008. I encourage all to attend if you can. It is a lot of fun and educational as well.

See You All At The September Meeting!!

August/September 2008 Mineral of the Month

August/September 2008 Mineral of the Month:


Quartz is the most common mineral found on the surface of the Earth. A significant component of many igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks, this natural form of silicon dioxide is found in an impressive range of varieties and colors. There are many names for different varieties: Crypto-crystalline varieties of Quartz are called Chalcedony and include the Agate family. Quartz can also be found in other forms such as Petrified Wood and Jasper.

Its chemical properties are as follows:

Crystal Structure…Trigonal

Mineral Group...Oxides

Chemical formula... SiO2

Specific Gravity...2.65


Color...Colorless, Purple, Rose, Black, Yellow, Brown, Green, Orange, etc.

Transparency...Transparent to Translucent

Prasiolite, Tigers Eye, Citrine and Onyx are also forms of Quartz. Pure quartz is colorless or white; colored varieties include rose quartz, amethyst, smoky quartz, milky quartz, and others. The most important distinction between the types of quartz is that of macro-crystalline (individual crystals visible to the unaided eye) and the crypto-crystalline varieties (aggregates of crystals visible only under high magnification). Chalcedony is a generic term for crypto-crystalline quartz. The crypto-crystalline varieties are either translucent or mostly opaque, while the transparent varieties tend to be macro-crystalline. Although many of the varietal names historically arose from the color of the mineral, current scientific naming schemes refer primarily to the microstructure of the mineral. Color is a secondary identifier for the crypto-crystalline minerals, although it is a primary identifier for the macro-crystalline varieties. However this does not always hold true

Monday, August 11, 2008

Antelope Valley Fair

To All Del Air Members and Interested Guests:

This is a reminder that myself, Bob Knox and Richard Haering will be entering 4 competitive cases in the Antelope Valley Fair this year. One of these cases will be a club case and this will be the first time that the Del Air's have been represented at this fair. This is the 70th Annual celebration of this fair and I have been a competitive displayer here for the past four years. I encourage all to attend as I feel it is the best fair around. Smaller than the LA County Fair and larger than the Ventura County Fair, the Antelope Valley fair has something for everyone.

I realize everyone must thinking its too hot or too far away but it really is no farther than the Ventura fair and to beat the heat, each year, I arrive around 5:30 pm as the fair is open till midnight. I first check out all the attractions and displays in the air conditioned buildings and by the time I am through, the sun has gone down and the breeze has kicked in and the desert evening turns out to be quite enjoyable and comfortable.

The fair is located at the new Antelope Valley Fairgrounds:
2551 West Avenue H, Lancaster, CA 93536
Take the I-14 freeway north to Avenue H exit and turn left. You can't miss it.

The Antelope Valley Fair is open this year from Friday August 22nd through Monday September 1st 2008. They are open from 12 noon till midnight on the weekends and from 4:00 pm till midnight midweek.

Admission is:
$8.00 for adults 12 yrs and older
$5.00 for juniors 6 to 11 yrs and seniors 62 yrs and above
$Free for children under 6 with paid adult and for active military with military ID

Parking is $5.00

So join us at the fair and check out our Rock and Gem exhibits as well as everything else the fair has to offer. Hope to see you there!!


Thanks to our very own eagle eyed Del Air member, Ethel Hellenthal , it has been brought to my attention that I listed the tentative date for the upcoming annual Del Air garage sale incorrectly. The correct tentative date is Saturday September 20th, 2008. I originally posted the date as being in November. I apologize for this error and hope you all will forgive me! If you scroll down to that post you will see that it has been corrected.

Your humble blogger,

Thursday, August 7, 2008

August /September 2008 Mineral of the Month

Just because the Del Airs do not have any regularly scheduled meetings during the month of August doesn't mean we have forgotten the Mineral of the Month!

This new club feature has proven to be such a hit each month that we have decided to do a
double presentation at our September 4th 2008 meeting.

The featured mineral will be........'Quartz'.........in all its spectacular forms and brilliant colors and exotic crystal shapes. Amethyst, Citrine, Jasper, Agate, Chalcedony, etc, etc, etc,

There will be a double sided full color handout for all to take home. As always, we encourage all attendees to bring their most prized quartz specimens to the September 4th 2008 meeting to share with the club. Lets make this our biggest turnout yet.

So keep an eye on our blog. Coming soon.....
to a PC or laptop near you.....

The August/September 2008 Mineral of the Month.....'Quartz'

Annual Del Air Rockhounds Garage Sale and Grab Bag Stuffing Extravaganza

Attention all Del Air Members and Interested Guests:

First, the garage sale....

Just a heads up to let you all know we have tentatively scheduled our annual garage sale for Saturday September 20th 2008 starting @ 9:00 am to be held at Bob Backus's home. Should this change for any reason a new post will be sent to all.

If you have anything you'd like to donate to the sale or if you'd like to donate your time and help out during the sale please contact Bob Backus (his contact information can be found in the monthly bulletin) or you can e-mail me @ chris_ward678@yahoo.com and I will respond with the appropriate information.

All proceeds go to the Del Air Rockhounds and help to bring us closer to obtaining our own shop.

Second, the Grab Bag Stuffing Extravaganza.....

Bob and Maxine Dearborn will be hosting a grab bag stuffing at their home tentatively scheduled for Saturday November 8th 2008 at 10:00 am. Again, should this change a new post will be sent to all.

We have gone thru almost all of our inventory of grab bags. As you may or may not know, the grab bags are the number one selling item at our annual show as well as the many school fairs our club is involved with each year. Our show is quickly approaching and we need to replenish our stock. Should you care to volunteer your time, usually 2 or 3 hours, please contact Bob or Maxine (their contact information can also be found in the monthly bulletin ) or e-mail me at the above listed e-mail address and I will respond appropriately.

Thank you all in advance for your participation and support.

Information On DEL AIR Education Team

The Del Air Rockhounds Club Presents............

Del Air Rockhounds club members can visit your classroom with a presentation on geology and the earth sciences. Our education outreach committee offers a variety of classroom programs.
  • Introduction to Geology (4th grade curriculum) Interactive Discussion / Slide Show / Hands-on Specimens
Students will have a chance to hold a variety of rocks and fossils in their own hands! Program is 50 minutes to an hour depending on age level
  • Introduction to Fossils (2nd grade curriculum) Interactive Discussion / Hands-on Specimens / Project Stations
Students will have the chance to hold many types of fossils in their own hands such as Petrification, Trace, Amber, and Frozen fossils. Program is 40 minutes to an hour depending on age level. To schedule you school visit contact: Del Air Member Maxine Dearborn at our Voice Mail: (818) 714-0321 Programs are free of charge! (nominal transportation fee outside of the San Fernando Valley) Donations may be given to Del Air Rockhounds Club. Please scroll down to see what some of our star students have to say about our "Rocks in Your Classroom" presentations.......