Fine Mineral's San Francisco Show - July 8 though 10, 2011

T his  is the second time I have come to this small show situated in San Rafael - about 30 minutes north of San Francisco in Marin County.  This year there were about the same number of dealers all confined to about half of teh second floor at the Embassy Suites.

 
An over view of the interior of the Suites from the 2nd floor.

 


A view to the left of the above photo. I believe that is Mike Keim's wife.

 


One more view taken looking to the right of the top photo.

 

I did not see a great deal of much new to report on.  Evan Jones had some new specimens of azurite and brochantite from the Milpillas mine in Mexico.  This mine has been productive for the last five years or so and the quality of azurite coming out is Tsumeb-like in terms of its quality!  The broachantite specimens were magnificent also though I think they would be anhililated if put in the hands of the Post Office... They were pricey too. 

 
Cabinet specimen of brilliantly lustrous azurite.

 

 
A very large cabinet specimen with more isolated crystals of azurite to 2.5 cm.

 


A very large cabinet 20+ cm specimen with sprays of brochantite.

 


A 15+ cm specimen of the acicular brochantite from Milpillas. Evan had $10,000 on this one.

Mineral shows like this are not all serious work.  Wine maker Brett Keller, of Mineral Winery (no website yet but he will have some supply with him at Tucson), was on hand and set up in Len Pisciotta and Carl Acosta's Room offering visitors tastes of his various red wines.  I was immediately smitten as he has a picture of a fine benitoite specimen on the labels!  The petit syrah left its mark on the tongue as seen in these two photos...

 
The first purple tongue that I saw... That is Brett pouring a glass... Note the benitoite on the label!

 

 
Tana and Lois of Kristalle have Brett surrounded with those purple tongues!

Friday night San Rafael residents Katharine Harer and Bob Byers hosted a party at their home for dealers and collectors.  It was very well attended.  Bob has an excellent collection with a focus on Stibnite and other antimony bearing minerals.

San Jose dealer Rick Kennedy has been working the Reward mine in Inyo county for specimens along with several other local Bay Area mineral collectors.  He came upon a rich zone of dark blue caledonite.  The blue of the caledonite is nicely contrasted with the bright canary yellow color of the bismuth bearing mineral perite.

A 2 cm specimen with crystals of caledonite to 0.4 cm.
 

Rick's pride and joy - a a5 cm cabinet specimen with a pod of massive and crystalline caledonite.
 
 
Saturday evening San Francisco collectors Joan Kureczka and Jesse Fisher hosted a small gathering at their home in San Francisco.  They live in a two story Victorian off Pennsylvania avenue and have a fantastic view of San Francisco from the balcony off their upper kitchen.
 
 
Down town San Francisco from the Fisher-Kureczka Home.
 
 
Jesse also had a stuffed jackalope - a rare crossbreed between a jack rabbit and antelope. Quite a little beast! 
 
Jesse and Joan are also in the process of reducing their vast collection dominated by pegmatite minerals from the various dike systems in San Diego and Riverside Counties.  Jesse put together a small hoard for me to take back home to Weaverville and include in the next update.  Quite a few interesting specimens!!!
 
Two views of a cabinet specimen of smoky quartz and elbaite from the Himalaya Mine. 
 
 
Two views of a light blue topaz from the Little Three mine in San Diego County.
 
Two of teh several elbaite specimens I picked up.  The one on the left is from the Himalaya Mine and the one on the right is from the Stewart Mine.
 
 
Prior to the show I had just completed etching over 75 brand new specimens from the Benitoite Gem Mine.  Steve Perry and I will have these and at least 250 more available at the Denver Show this September.  I brought some of the more exceptional examples for folks to see and actually sold one of the three best specimens from this group while there.
 
1.2 cm, triply terminated, lustrous, gemmy crystal of benitoite on matrix.  This is a competition level TN specimen.
 
 
2.3 cm, triply terminated, crystal of benitoite with a 2.8 cm doubly terminated
crystal of neptunite.  This is world class Benitoite mine specimen!.
 
 
This 6.5 cm specimen is an exceptional combination piece with benitoite
and neptunite crystals. Much of the benitoite has gem rough as well.
 
 
Most dealers said that traffic was a bit slower than last year.  It might be that the show moves to a new venue in the future that is more centrally located within the Bay Area.  Regardless of wher it is I will be back again to enjoy friendships and good times there in the greater San Francisco Bay area.


Past Shows & Reports
PLEASE NOTE: The minerals that were offered on these pages are all sold
1999
Munich Show
2000
Sainte Marie Show
Munich Show
2001
Sainte Marie Show
Munich Show
2002
Tucson Show
Sainte Marie Show
Denver Show
Munich Show
2003
Tucson Show
Sainte Marie Show
East Coast Show
Denver Show
Munich Show
2004
Tucson Show
West Coast Show
East Coast Show
Denver Show
Munich Show
2005
Tucson Show
West Coast Show
East Coast Show
Denver Show
Munich Show
2006
Tucson Show
Bologna Show
Sainte Marie Show
East Coast Show
Munich Show
2007
Tucson Show
Dallas Show
East Coast Show
Denver Show
Munich Show
2008
Tucson Show
West Coast Show
East Coast Show
Denver Show
Munich Show
2009
Tucson Show
West Coast Show
East Coast Show
Denver Show
Munich Show

2010
Tucson Show
San Francisco Show
East Coast Show
Denver Show

Munich Show

2011
Tucson Show
San Francisco Show
East Coast Show
Denver Show
Munich Show

 

 



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