On February 1st, Debbie and I went to see the Tucson Gem show opening weekend. We were just staying over one night and our goal was to find new wedding rings that are matching and do not need to be sized. We had a great time even though the whole state of Arizona was going through a biblical rainstorm. So much rain in fact we almost got into an accident on the I10 driving to Tucson Friday afternoon. Outside of some shaken nerves and a new distaste for 18 wheel drivers who should never try to pass on the right when there is standing water on the road and maybe 20 feet visibility.
We checked into our hotel by 1pm and decided to start at Grant Street off the I10 and travel the frontage road south. Our first show we hit was the RSJG show. It had one small vendor show were you did have to register in order to walk around to maybe 20 vendors. Mostly whom were selling beads. We saw one nice jeweler who had tungsten rings but nothings that great. We then walked around the hotel part and found lopacki gems who had nice fire agates. He was nice enough to let me take photos of them and opened the case to help reduce glare.
I really love Fire agate and its the stone that got me into Lapidary and gemstone collecting. These five pieces are great examples of material that is worth the time and effort to cut.
We then moved onto the Days Inn show were i ran into some vendors from Morocco that had really nice flats of Vanadinite druzy for a reasonable price but i did no buy and forgot to take photos. We did however see lots of Amethyst Cathedrals of Amethyst along with some nice coffee table pieces.
We saw some fun stuff but not much in the way of nice jewelry at a reasonable price but we got a tip from a vendor to make sure to visit the Pueblo Gem and Mineral show next door(a block away) for more jewelry and rings for sale. So that is were we went next. The rain had let up for a moment while looking around the Days Inn so we drive next door and found parking, made our way into the lobby of the Pueblo and it started pouring again. We were prepared with an umbrella so we made it out back to find a large vendor tent with tons of large gemstone rings. I showed some interests but they were all to large and tacky for wedding rings. This same vendor had thousands of pieces of sugalite rough slabs for sale with many people picking through the piles on tables looking for the right piece. It is still pouring crazy and we made our way around and then found a vendor with gibeon Meteorite rings set in sterling silver. It was exactly what I was looking for for my ring and it really stood out as a unique item. Debbie really liked and they fit nicely. After that purchase we went back inside to visit the jewelry room and found Debbie’s perfect ring with about 6 pieces of inlaid opal. Here is a picture of our wedding rings.
We are very happen and pleased we found them and both always have them on. After that show we went back to the hotel and had a drink, then went out to dinner at our favorite place to eat in Tucson, El Corral. If you like a good steakhouse, make sure to visit them when in town. They are up on River and Campbell roughly.
The next morning we decide to go to the the Kino Gemshow as my folks text me and said they were coming down and wanted to know were to buy rough. I had heard Kino was one of the best shows for lapidary rough and folks were right. I hadn’t been to that show since like 2005 and the amount of vendors out side had grown ten fold. I took some photos using a gopro and after about 30 mins of walking around in puddles of water. My folks found us talking with John of Slabs and cabs about his Pietersite source. My dad wanted to buy some good rough, but i strayed him away from that pricey stuff. He then asked if i knew were any script stone rough was, which i did not. But i notice the gemcenter had many barrels of covered material out front of their tent. After about 30 secs i found 12 barrels of the stuff. It is also goes by the name of Cobra or Elephant jasper. And is a fossil limstone in a rust red matrix with yellow fossils. Funny thing was the gemcenter had sold all 12 barrels to another vendor at the show. So we set out at the Kino show to find this other vendor. When we found him and told him we wanted to buy some of that material, he was excited to hear the rough was onsite. My dad and him went down to the gemcenter and got a forklift to bring all the barrels down. We then went on to purchase Berber and Agua Neuvo agate from him. These last group of photos is from both the Pueblo gemshow and Kino Gem show. We had a blast and will make it a yearly thing to do for sure. Thanks for visiting with us.