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July-August 2011

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Chips from the Quarry: July/August 2011

WHAT'S ON YOUR PLATE? License plate, that is. Sometimes we can't resist adding a just-for-fun article to our regular features and columns, and that's just what we've done in this issue with Jeffrey Starr's “Express Yourself: A License to Collect.” Camera in hand, Jeff made the rounds of parking lots at the Denver and Tucson shows during the past year snapping photos of custom-made license plates on collectors' cars, vans, and trucks. You'll find them on pages 360–61; perhaps you'll see yours.

THE BRIDE WAS AGLOW: Another fun article, this one planned for an upcoming issue, will be Earl Verbeek's report on the marriage of Heather Ogawa and Gary Moldovany, which took place this past April in New Jersey's Sterling Hill mine, known for its fluorescent minerals. Hey, what better place to make that rock-solid commitment than in a mine! Not since a young couple exchanged vows in the Palermo mine in New Hampshire back in 1994 have we published a write-up of a wedding (see the March/April 1995 issue).

SCOTT RUDOLPH AT SPRINGFIELD: We've seen parts of Scott Rudolph's superb collection in displays at the Tucson and Denver shows, but now comes the chance to see fifty-three cases of his minerals from worldwide localities on 12–14 August, when he is the sole featured exhibitor at the East Coast Show in West Springfield, Massachusetts.

Caption: Scott Rudolph, featured exhibitor at the East Coast Show in August.

Caption: Scott Rudolph, featured exhibitor at the East Coast Show in August.

The show, a Martin Zinn Exposition, has become one of the country's premier mineral events. With approximately two hundred dealers (including both retail and wholesale), a full speaker program, activities for the entire family, free specimens for kids, and a free mineral identification booth, the show draws nine thousand visitors annually. For further details, see www.mzexpos.com.

Caption: Two specimens from the Scott Rudolph collection. Left: Spodumene, albite, and quartz, 14.6 cm high, from Mawi, Kunar Province, Afghanistan. Right: Microcline, albite, and quartz, 15 cm high, from El Paso County, Colorado. Jeff Scovil photos.

Caption: Two specimens from the Scott Rudolph collection. Left: Spodumene, albite, and quartz, 14.6 cm high, from Mawi, Kunar Province, Afghanistan. Right: Microcline, albite, and quartz, 15 cm high, from El Paso County, Colorado. Jeff Scovil photos.

WELCOME ABOARD: We are pleased to welcome Paul W. Pohwat to our roster of consulting editors and also as the new columnist for Connoisseur's Choice, beginning with this issue. Paul is the collections manager in the Department of Mineral Sciences at the National Museum of Natural History (Smithsonian Institution) and a familiar face to most of us at the major mineral shows.

As columnist, he takes over for Dr. Robert Cook, who has written Connoisseur's Choice since its inception in the January/February 1993 issue, with just a sprinkling of guest columnists in the past couple of years. That's six columns per year for eighteen years; well, you can do the math. With more than one hundred columns to his credit, his contribution to the literature and to the magazine has been tremendous. Under his expert guidance, Connoisseur's Choice articles have grown in length from just a couple of pages, with one photograph, to today's dozen or so pages, amply illustrated with as many photos. Despite retirement from teaching at Auburn University a few years ago, he, thankfully, continued to produce column after column. Even though he's now ready to put down his pen, he will remain one of the three executive editors of Rocks & Minerals, and, just to keep his hand in, has agreed to write a Connoisseur's Choice guest column from time to time.

Caption: Paul W. Pohwat, new consulting editor and columnist for Connoisseur's Choice.

Caption: Paul W. Pohwat, new consulting editor and columnist for Connoisseur's Choice.

WALL OF FAME: Greeting visitors to his booth at the 2011 Tucson Show was a giant display of Mike Woodward's artwork along with laminated, enlarged pages of Susan Robinson's article on his artistic creations from our January/February issue (pages 58–60). Covering one entire outside wall, the colorful arrangement was almost impossible to miss. However, in case you did, we've included a photo here. You can see more of his abstract art at website http://mikewoodwardphotography.com; Woodward can be contacted at mike.city@gte.net.

Caption: The wall display that was part of Mike Woodward's booth at the 2011 Tucson Show. Shown is his artwork that was featured in the January/February issue of Rocks & Minerals. Mary Fitzpatrick photo.

Caption: The wall display that was part of Mike Woodward's booth at the 2011 Tucson Show. Shown is his artwork that was featured in the January/February issue of Rocks & Minerals. Mary Fitzpatrick photo.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS: The Houston Gem and Mineral Society, in memory of Arthur E. Smith, and the Cincinnati Mineral Society underwrote color costs in the Connoisseur's Choice column; Maryanne and John Fender (Fender Natural Resources) did the same for the Museum Notes column, and donors to the Color Fund contributed to color in the remaining articles. All are thanked for their generosity in partnering with Rocks & Minerals to support color photography in the magazine.

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