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Roger Lang's Blog

Ste. Marie show 2011 Pt 2

6th Jul 2011

Part 2 of this years `alternative` show report from France - our last day there.

Friday, 24th of June 2011

At the show around 10.30 am, this time parking a bit nearer to the show as on thursday. Weather ok. A coffee at Philipps booth, Paul Bongaerds showed up there. Made appointment for the Mindat party later and then some nosing around to check out a few specimens i had noticed the day before. Found a nice old timer cuprite from Rudabanya, Hungary.

Paul Bongaerts
Namibian Quartz

Then we headed for the Theatre to see the special exhibition. The Theatre is kind of aesthetic overkill - thousands of colourful specimens of all kind. I recognized a lot of the specimens from the year before ;)

The special exhibition consisted of two parts: one part with Oisans minerals, the other with minerals from Les Malines, St. Laurent le Minier. Very good quality specimens. I was particularly fascinated by a Phantom Quartz, an Axinite and a Prehnite in the Oisans display. On the other side, fantastic Bournonites and Barytes from Les Malines caught my eyes as well as bright red Ruby Blende Sphalerite. The Frankfurt-Mainz-Gang met in front of the displays and a photographing battle started ;)

Special exhibition: Les Malines
Another Bournonite

Special exhibition: Oisans
Phantom Quartz

We proceeded to visit Ian Bruce of Crystal Classics (and also seeing stunning specimens from Watzl Minerals, Marcus Budil and others on our way). Ian and friends had some fantastic specimens on display, i particularly liked an excellent Friedrichssegen Pyromorphite and a beautiful Kelly Mine Smithsonite. On our way out of the Theatre we also noticed a display with very good Panasqueira, Portugal specimens. Then meeting on the stairs again, relaxing a bit after the overwhelming impression of the high end showroom of Ste. Marie.

Smithsonite, Kelly Mine

Axinite, Puiva
Panasqueira Minerals

Now it was time for another tour through the Val Expo halls, i finally got my Brookite from Alfred and then we visited Wolfgang `Wolli` and Karin Wendel. Excellent european classics amongst a lot of aesthetic and rare specimens worldwide - as i am used to at Wolli´s booth. The chef was at work, Steffen Michalski showed up and we were invited for a glass of cold white wine. Steffen negotiated for a classic Erzgebirge Roselite and he finally was successful ;) - which led to unprecedented hugging of Karin Wendel by him. We also met Tim Welting and Leon Hupperichs there.

Got it!
Thanks Dear!
Kongsberg Silver

Neudorf Galena
Bismuth, Erzgebirge
Hessite, Botes
Wolli at work

Next stop was Spirifer Minerals to have a look at Tom´s new stuff before the party started. They had new Cobaltocalcites from Moroco, excellent Erythrites from Bou Azzer, a variety of Stzregom minerals like Epidote on Quartz and many more. But my favourites were the Rogerley Mine Fluorites and i couldn´t resist to get one of them. Back to the base then, packing all the stuff and i found a very nice display specimen for my collection from Tongbei - a Smoky Quartz-Spessartine-Feldspar combo - at a chinese dealer just next to Philipp´s booth. Mike Brooke came in for a good cold german beer and then we prepared our treasures for transport before the relaxed part of the day should start.

Tom with Erythrite
Stzregom Epidote & more
Asia with new find
Morocco Cobaltocalcite

Now it was time to prepare for the party: back to Tom´s booth, a first beer on the Rogerley Fluorite and the party setup began. An impressive amount of large leaves of bread, gherkins, lard with onions should provide a solid base for some alcoholic beverages which were to expect during the next hour. Soon it got crowded, a lot of familiar faces were seen, including (i hope i recognized them all correctly ;) ) Luiz Menezes, Paul Bongaerts, Alfredo Petrov, Chris Mavris, Jeff Scovil, Ingo Löffler, Gerhard Niceus, Ian Jones, Steffen Michalski, Jens Häusler, Wilhelm `der Sauerländer` ;), Emmanuel Bravais, Amir Akhavan, Scott Werschky and many more - of course the Spirifer team (Asia, Agata, Krzysztof and the others). Michel Schwab, organizer of the Ste. Marie show came along as well. If i remember right (and believe me this can be hard after some vodka) there was a group of Young Spirifer folks who had been invited by the show officials so there was some foto shooting with M. Schwab and the group. Tom was a great host, not allowing that the glasses stayed empty for more than approx. 10 seconds. But look at the pictures, they should speak for themselves. Big thanks to Tom and his friends.

Mike Brooke
The party begins!
Mindat party
Almost Oceans Eleven ;)


Derated condition


Some beer and vodka later it was time to say goodbye. Picked up our stuff from Philipp´s booth and then headed for the car - i was lucky i had a driver so no worry ;-) i did NOT drive myself of course. Because the car was parked some hundred meters opposite to the announced FMF party we decided to leave it out this year - Jordi, if you read, next time for sure and thanks for the invitation! Then back to the hotel - we had to move to another accomodation for the last night unfortunately - and last time dinner at the Huhnerstall again. Saturday morning a smooth drive back to Mainz and to my home in the beautiful Saarland then.


A short resume of the show: not much new stuff, but some really interesting things to see. The price range was from bargain to overly expensive with a tendency to higher prices again. My personal `prey` was very satisfactory. There were many excellent pieces at the show, and of course gazillions more than i described above - it is impossible to catch all facets of the show (i also left out Eurogem) in a few sentences and pictures. One has to go there to feel the Ste. Marie flair. Unfortunately - and as has been around since years now - it seems that the show will move to Colmar in the next years (but not next year) according to actual news. It would be a pity for the town of Ste. Marie aux Mines and a great loss for those who love the very special atmosphere of the Euromineral.

Thanks and cheers to all my fellows and friends for joining, our hosts, the Beckers, for providing the perfect base again and all people we met and had fun together. And if you like to see more pictures from the show, check out the Ste. Marie thread at Jordi Fabres FMF Forum: http://www.mineral-forum.com/message-board/viewtopic.php?t=1744&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

Goodbye Ste. Marie 2011, hello Ste. Marie 2012 -then maybe for the last time?.


Blog has been viewed at least 15594 times.


Thanks for the great report and the pics !

Christian Auer
18th Jul 2011 8:19pm

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