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2016 Nova Scotia Gem and Mineral Show

Last Updated: 20th Aug 2016

By Ronnie Van Dommelen

The Nova Scotia Gem and Mineral Show is held in Parrsboro, Nova Scotia each year in the middle of August. This is a long running show (previously going by the name Rockhound Roundup); I believe that this years show in 2016 is the 51st year. And in this small community of about 1300 people it is a big deal, bringing in visitors from all over. It is a great occasion to see old friends and maybe find something interesting to add to the collection.

The drive from Halifax to Parrsboro is nice, especially when there are views of the Minas Basin. After climbing over Economy Mountain you pass the beautiful Five Islands. These islands have produced great stilbite, the finest natrolite in the province, and some of the finest gmelinite from anywhere. On this day the drive to Parrsboro also included a couple bald eagles flying overhead.

Five Islands


Minerals and fossils are a central theme in Parrsboro. The nearby Wasson Bluff is the site of important dinosaur discoveries at nearly the time of the mass extinction marking the transition from the Triassic to the Jurassic. There is the Fundy Geological Museum in town showcasing these discoveries and there are dinosaur signs, models, and lights everywhere. Also, because its a small town signs for 'Bass Fishin Gear' at the pharmacy.

Parrsboro Store Front
Parrsboro Sign
Parrsboro Store Front
Parrsboro Sign
Parrsboro Store Front
Parrsboro Sign


I arrived at the show before the doores opened. The weatehr was fantastic this year. Not too hot but nice and sunny. Don Doell and Terry Collett pull up in Don's rental car. Nice ride, but not exactly practical for collecting if you want to strap a ladder on top.

Show sign
Arriving in Style
Show sign
Arriving in Style
Show sign
Arriving in Style


Once the doors open, people start filling the arena. The first day is always a competition with people trying to find tht special piece before someone else. There is also a poster for the local museum and a timetable. Conurrent with the show, there are various live demonstrations and guided field trips to local sites with geologists.

Parrsboro Show
Museum Poster
Parrsboro Show
Museum Poster
Parrsboro Show
Museum Poster


As at most shows there is a mix of minerals, jewelry, lapidary, metaphysical, etc. but I am most interested in minerals. There are several dealers set up this year including Crystal Grove from Ontario and Francois Lorite from Arkane Minerals. Francois resides very close to Mont St. Hilaire and had many specimens from that most famous locality.

Collection Arkane
Elpidite
Collection Arkane
Elpidite
Collection Arkane
Elpidite


Dino Nardini's Nova Scotia Agate booth was very popular with crowds looking through bins of local agate and amethyst. Dino is a insatiable field collector and has lots of beautiful flame agate available.

Nova Scotia Agate


Francoise Duranleau is also from Quebec and has a wide range of worldwide minerals including a good selection of Chinese material. Right next door is Doug Wilson of Amethyst Boutique. Doug has a year-round store in town but also has a booth at the show. He has lots of great Nova Scotia minerals and worldwide material too. I was interested in some new thumbnails of gold in quartz from a Lake Catcha, Nova Scotia. Local gold specimens are hard to come by.

Francoise Duranleau
Smoky Quartz
Francoise Duranleau
Smoky Quartz
Francoise Duranleau
Smoky Quartz


Doug Wilson
Gold
Doug Wilson
Gold
Doug Wilson
Gold


Adjacent to Doug was Bob Beckett and his Kawartha Minerals booth. Bob came east from Ontario and had a display of jewelry and facetted material. There were some great faceted smoky quartz from a Nova Scotia locality that has now been built over. Material like that is rare. He also had some small faceted analcimes from Wasson Bluff.

Across the aisle Rod Tyson had a display of higher end minerals including a colorful display of fluorite. Rod also has a shop in town. On this day he was busy at home cleaning some new Yukon phosphates that were just collected.

Facetted Smoky Quartz
Fluorite
Facetted Smoky Quartz
Fluorite
Facetted Smoky Quartz
Fluorite


The Nova Scotia Mineral and Gem Society has an information booth with a display of minerals and prizes. The display material was provided by Dick McAllister who is a half-time resident who spends winters in Massachusetts. Dick has done a lot of scouting around Parrsboro over the years and made some interesting discoveries.

NSMGS
Dick McAllister
NSMGS
Dick McAllister
NSMGS
Dick McAllister


It was another great year at the show with friends and minerals!






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Comments

Nice write-up Ronnie! Wish I could have been there! DKJ

David K. Joyce
21st Aug 2016 1:10am

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