MARIPOSA – The magic of minerals and more will be on display at the Gem & Mineral Show this Saturday and Sunday, Apr. 19-20 at the Mariposa County Fairgrounds on Highway 49.
From benitoite to topaz and nearly all the gems and minerals an expert can name – gold included – are featured in the annual show which includes jewelry, exhibits, demonstrations and speakers.
Organizers expect the Mariposa Gem and Mineral show to be bigger and better than ever this year. The Easter weekend extravaganza now includes live music and a free community Easter Egg hunt, plus activities for kids, delicious food and a silent auction.
“Beautiful crystals and gemstones will be on display in both the vendor booths as well as the Museum’s extensive collection,” say organizers.
They promise “gemstones for everyone, rock cutting for dad, mini train rides for kids, lovely jewelry for the ladies and gold panning, making this the ideal day or weekend getaway.”
The Easter Egg hunt is on Saturday, at 1 p.m., for children up to age 12. Kids and parents are advised to meet at the Fairgrounds office before the hunt gets underway.
Also on Saturday, local prospector Fred Radonic, owner of Gold Rush Trading Post, will demonstrate the basics of using metal detectors for gold prospecting out on the grass field in front of the Museum.
On Sunday at 11 a.m., Su Carney of Yosemite Gifts will provide a jewelry making demonstration inside the Museum, followed at 2 p.m. by a presentation by museum staff and volunteers showing what life was like in an 1850s-era gold miners camp.
Members of the Mariposa Gem & Mineral Club will be cutting geodes throughout the show to see what interesting surprises they can find inside, and the Club will run a raffle at their booth in Sequoia Hall.
The Mariposa County Fair Grounds and State Mining & Mineral Museum are located 2 miles south of Mariposa on Highway 49.
Visitors can enjoy a scavenger hunt in the museum, check out the mine tunnel, explore rocks and minerals at the touch table and see a gold camp with real gold miners, along with a wide array of gemstone jewelry and rough mineral and rock specimens.
Admission to the festivities is just $3 and kids get in free. Parking is also free, and your paid admission to the Gem & Mineral Show covers museum admission as well.
On Saturday hours are 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Sunday hours are 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.