Vol. XXXXI, No. 5 --- May 2004

CFMS Newsletter

Table of Contents
President's Message
Deadline for Committee Rpts
Mariposa Show Update
Clubs and Fed. Directors
Rail Safety Tips
Public Relation Committee
Golden Bear Award
Education Thru Sharing
AFMS Scholarship Foundation 2004 Recipients
SCRIBE - Not Just for Editors
AFMS Uniform Rules Chatter
BLM News Bytes

Prez Message

By Lois Allmen, CFMS President


CFMS President

Show time at Mariposa, and that means a Directors meeting May 29, Saturday at 8 a.m. Is your club geared up to send your Director to the meeting? It is important he/she be there. These meetings are where the Directors make decisions that affect your club.

The last Directors meeting, held in Fresno, barely squeaked by with a quorum to hold the meeting. Do you know that that means out of 140 odd clubs only half were represented? Wouldn•  t you like to have a say-so in making the decisions? That happens only when your Director is there.

If expense is a contributing factor, some clubs help defray the cost by paying mileage, or giving the Director a set amount, such as $50-75 for each of the two meetings a year. If time is the problem, some clubs elect an alternate to attend. You may come up with other ways to get your Director there. Whatever you do, I wish you success because we really need your advocate there in order to conduct your business.


Our Earth Science Seminars are one of the best things to come out of CFMS for our members. Please, please, tell your members about them! We want everyone to know!

The people who attend try to go back year after year, it becomes an addiction where you can work all day in your chosen area without interruptions. You get up in the morning, eat your breakfast, brush your teeth and go to class. A bell rings at noon for lunch. You get up, leave everything just as you were working on it, eat lunch, go back and pick up where you left off. Class ends at 4 p.m., which doesn't mean you have to leave, you can work until the bell rings for dinner at 6 p.m. At 7 p.m. there is usually a program that ends in an hour or two. YOU CAN DO THIS FOR A WHOLE WEEK.

It was shocking to find that MANY of our club members DO NOT REALLY KNOW WHAT ARE THE EARTH SCIENCE SEMINARS. There are rock collecting, cabochons, Silver smithing (Cal calls it fabrication), stone carving, bead stringing, gem tree makings, casting, silver clay work, bead making, dichroic glass, wire wrap, gem carving, speakers, films, sightseeing. (Due to the particular circumstances at the different locations, a few of these are not offered at every place).

Check on the application form that Cal puts out to see what is available for that session. The Form is ALWAYS put in the CFMS NEWSLETTER a few months ahead of the event for the Editor of your club or your president to tell you at your meeting.

Don Ogden also has the application forms on the CFMS Website.

But don•  t drag your feet.


By Pat LaRue, CFMS Executive Sec/Trea

The DEADLINE FOR COMMITTEE REPORTS for the Directors packet is May 15 for May 29 Directors Meeting at Mariposa Show. Reports can be sent e-mail or snail mail. I can open Word or Wordperfect format with no problem. If unable to get your report to me in time, you should bring a minimum of 100 copies to the Directors meeting. Thank you.


By Peggy Ronning, Mariposa Club, Show Chairman

The 2004 CFMS and Mariposa Mineral and Gem Show is almost here. It's time to get your pre-registration for passes, banquet tickets, and editor's breakfast tickets sent in. Are you planning to share your mineral treasures as a guest or competitive exhibitor? If so, don't forget to turn in your exhibitor application so we can reserve a space for you!


The Competitive Entry Form was revised to include
the Northern California Faceting Trophy.

Revised Competitive Entry Form

Mariposa is a popular destination on Memorial Day weekend, so if you're planning to stay in a motel, it's time to reserve your room. A list of hotels and bed & breakfasts is available with the show forms on the CFMS website. If you are planning to camp at the fairgrounds, camping will be first come first served (no reservations), but don't worry, there is space for 100 campers. The fairgrounds staff says they can provide power to all campers. The fairgrounds also has bathrooms, showers, and a pump station.

We are looking forward to exhibits of lapidary art, minerals from as near as Butte and Inyo Counties and as far as Australia, and fluorescent minerals. We will have vendors for every interest, selling lapidary equipment, beads, rough and finished stones, mineral specimens,luorescent minerals, gold specimens, jewelry, and more.

See you at the Goldbug Gala, May 28-30 at the Mariposa County Fairgrounds!

Peggy Ronning, Mariposa Club, Show Chairman
California State Mining & Mineral Museum,
(209) 742-7625, Monday - Friday, 7a.m. to 4p.m,
PO Box 1192, Mariposa, CA 95338
Mariposa Show Forms

A Special Call to All Clubs and Federation Directors

By Richard Pankey, Treasurer

The CFMS Board of Directors meets twice a year to conduct the business of the Federation. These meetings are very important for the successful operation of the Federation and for the health and vitality of the Federation. The successful operation of the member clubs and the health and vitality of these clubs can be directly traced to the attendance and participation of their director. CFMS is not an entity unto itself, it is the member clubs, in total, that is the Federation. And without the participation and input from the clubs, through their directors, the federation cannot function. It is important that each society have a Federation Director that can and will attend the Directors' Meeting to represent the society to the Federation and represent the Federation to the society.

In the January CFMS Newsletter Shirley Leeson published the attendance records for the last 5 years, the last 10 meetings. Thirty-one clubs had perfect attendance, most had some attendance, and there were 24 clubs that did not attend any of the meetings. How did your society do? Does your society have a Federation Director? Does he or she attend these meetings? Can or will he or she attend these meetings?

What can your club do? This is a very important officer in your society. Don't have a person who is your Federation Director in name only. Elect/appoint a Federation Director who can and will attend the meetings to represent your thoughts and ideas to the Federation and bring back to your club what is happening at the meetings and other activities of the Federation. Also, you need to keep CFMS informed about whom your Director is and if there is a change in that office. The Federation Director should read all reports and the CFMS Newsletter and keep the club informed on the actions and activities of the Federation.

Our next Directors' meeting will be held during the CFMS Show in Mariposa on May 29th. In April, your director will be mailed the notice of the meeting, registration form, agenda and minutes of the last Directors' Meeting. He/she should read and present this material to the club so that he/she can be instructed as to your wishes. The director should bring to the meeting any new business or ideas that the society wishes to be presented.

There are 136 clubs and societies in CFMS and each one should be represented at this meeting by their director or an alternate.

Will your society be represented at the Board of Directors' Meeting in Mariposa?

Rail Safety Tips

By Chuck McKie, CFMS Safety Chairman 2004
via city of Fairfield Observer Newsletter 09/2002

The number of incidents involving trains with cars and pedestrians has increased dramatically. California leads the nation in rail-related injuries and deaths. Last year 127 Californians lost their lives trespassing on railroad right of-ways or at highway/rail crossings. Unfortunately, during the past year, there have been victims in Fairfield/Suisun who have been harmed or killed by a train.

These incidents are preventable, by following some simple rules:

  • Always expect a train on any track, at any time and going any direction, because non-passenger trains do not maintain a regular schedule. Remember tracks do not have traffic directions like roads.
  • Do not walk on or near train tracks, they are private property. More importantly, trains are very quiet as they approach, can overhang the tracks by 3 feet on either side and cannot swerve to avoid persons on or near the tracks. A train traveling at 50 mph can take as much as 1.5 miles to stop.
  • Cross tracks at a designated pedestrian or roadway crossing. Observe and obey all warning signs or signals.
  • Do not cross tracks immediately after a train passes. Trains can come from either direction. A second train may be blocked from view by the first. Wait until you can see clearly around the first train in both directions.
  • Never drive around down crossing gates. If you think the gates are malfunctioning, call the phone number on the crossing signal or local law enforcement.
  • Immediately get out of a vehicle that stalls or becomes hung up on tracks and move away. If a train is coming, move away in the direction of the train to avoid being struck by debris when the train hits the vehicle. In either case, call local law enforcement immediately.

For more information on rail safety, please contact :

Operation Lifesaver at 530-367-3918 or

To Committee Members and All Concerned:

By Terrie Masters, Public Relations Committee Chair

Bob Stultz recognizing many clubs needed some guidelines to follow in maintaining and increasing membership, as well as holding successful Rock and Mineral Shows, nominated Brad Smith to head this committee. Brad has long been involved with a very wonderful and active group Culver City R&GC.

This club has always had very active membership and an extraordinarily successful annual club show. Brad was an excellent choice. He actively pursued ideas from all the members of his committee. An outstanding manual was conceived, published, and sent to all clubs for input. Brad was very interested in hearing from clubs and how they could add or comment on the suggestions within. The response was next to zero. This was very discouraging, and Brad saw no way to overcome this level of disinterest. Nothing further was accomplished.

This year we have a new committee, and we need to once again solicit from the clubs within this Federation just how the CFMS can assist them in all of the above. We are all open to suggestions, and hopefully we will receive some. I know clubs can benefit from sharing what is and what is not successful. I hope we can generate enough interest to make this work.

Now an off the record aside from me. I am going to use the area I am most familiar with in sharing what I see. San Diego once had the most active and successful shows going. Gem Diego was an annual show held at Del Mar Fair Grounds, it was enormously well received and a mutual benefit to all the clubs. This bubble burst when a commercial show promoter saw the financial potential for himself, Del Mar was locked in, our dealers were taken, and we were effectively locked out.

San Diego did have a rather successful County Council which made for wonderful field trips and cooperative assistance in putting on club shows. There was an annual Gemboree, under (their) auspices. While I was at the SD&G Show Saturday, I was advised that the November 2004 Gemboree was canceled. Now that is awful to hear, and very sad for me. San Diego Council was a very vital group, with some very good representatives from most of the San Diego Clubs.

I love every phase of rocks and minerals, lapidary and silver smithing. I enjoy CFMS and AFMS, and want to see both flourish. In order to lead other clubs and ensure the proliferation of CFMS and other Federations, we need to recognize where there is room for improvement. I am more than open to suggestions. I want to see San Diego once again flourish in clubs and shows. It can be done, but we need to offer viable solutions from a united front.

Thank you for reading, now please share comments.

Golden Bear Award

By Frank Mullaney, Golden Bear Chairman

The Golden Bear Award committee is looking for nominations for this award.

Who may receive this Award? This award shall be presented to a person whom the CFMS wishes to honor in appreciation for and recognition of outstanding services to the CFMS. The person must be or have been a member of an affiliated society of the CFMS.

Who may make the Nomination? The nomination for this award may be made by the Executive Committee of the CFMS, by a director of a member society, or by a CFMS committee chair. A letter of the candidate's services shall accompany the nomination.

Nominations shall be sent to the chair of the Golden Bear Award committee.

Deadline will be May 1st.

Frank Mullaney, Golden Bear Chairman
5705 Begonia Dr., San Jose, CA 95124,

Education through Sharing

By Loretta Ogden, Chairman

.The Sutter Buttes Gem & Mineral Society would like to nominate Mary Louise & Joe Love as our candidates for Education Through Sharing 2004.

Mary Louise was our club President three years, Joe has served as Vice-president. Both Joe and Mary Louise have been Federation Directors and attended Federation show and meetings. Mary Louise also took a class on judging showcases and worked as secretary to one of the show judges. They have been our representatives to the Superior Cal group, a small group of Northern California clubs.

Mary Louise started our Tuesday Morning Crafty Ladies Club. She made arrangements for a one week faceting and wire wrapping class. Mary Louise is very intent upon learning all she can about our hobby. She has taken classes in past years at Camp Paradise and lapidary classes with the Roseville Rock Rollers. She was showcase chairman for our show for several years, and worked in the kitchen.

Mary Louise and Joe have been greeters and entered showcases when we have had presentations at the local fair. Mary Louise & Joe worked up a presentation for 4th and 5th graders at one of the local schools. Mary Louise was active in looking for a place for us to hold lapidary classes. Only illness has slowed them down from being as active with our club in the past year.

From: Inez Berg
President Sutter Buttes Gem & Mineral Society

AFMS Scholarship Foundation 2004 Recipients

By Dee Holland, Foundation President via AFMS Newsletter, March 2004

Each of the Regional Federations participating in the AFMS Scholarship Foundation select one individual each year as their Honorary Scholarship Recipient. That individual in turn selects the students who receive the annual grants.

The March 2004 Newsletter reports on three of the six honorees.

  • From the California Federation, Isabella Burns, a lifelong educator, speaker, appointed to Federal government's California Desert Advisory Council as rockhound advocate.
  • From the Midwest Federation, Dr. Paul Lawrence Garvin, Professor of Geology, Cornell College, Iowa, with his many research publications, student interns, and 23 years in Cedar Valley rock club.
  • From Rocky Mountain Federation, Dr. Andrew R. Campbell, Dept. Earth & Environmental Science, NM Institute of Mining, educator, researcher, and public relations agent in the Earth sciences.

SCRIBE - Not Just for Editors!

By Sir Barkley Bigfoot, Asst. Editor and Caesar, Chief Gofer
via AFMS Newsletter, April 2004

We just received the latest issue of SCRIBE., the newsletter of the Special Congress Representing involved Bulletin Editors. It comes via email 4 x year. Membership costs $6 per year. It started as organization for bulletin editors the last issue full of useful things for everyone using a computer. For example, two articles of note, "Saving Your Files Beyond Backup" by Carol Brown taught us about preserving our work and moving it to another computer. Also, "Computer Insurance, Bad Things Happen to Good Files" and "New Printer Protocol".

Interested in joining? Send the following information, along with your dues check (payable to SCRIBE) for $6 per year ($8 per couple) to:

Pauline Price,
1480 E 3350 South,
Salt Lake City, UT 84106-3330.


  • Your name, address, city, state & zipcode. E-mail address.
  • Tell us whether you are Editor, Asst Editor, Publisher, Former Editor, Author, Other
  • Name of your club.
    Name of your newsletter.
  • Federation to which your club belongs.
  • Where did you hear about SCRIBE?

SCRIBE website http://scribesite.home.att.net

SCRIBE Application Form - - Click here for Form

AFMS Uniform Rules Chatter

By B. Jay Bowman, AFMS URC Chair
via AFMS Newsletter, April, 2004

First impressions, how important are they?

Several years ago I and another judge were judging a case of southwestern style jewelry. This was a regional Federation show. The display case was not a standard type case but rather a flat case with no lights. The display room was well lighted and no problems were encountered with the lack of lights in the case. The jewelry was well made and the case had some quite unique designs in it. The case scored in the low nineties. We talked to the exhibitor about how to avoid future problems and use a case with lights.

A couple of years later I was judging jewelry again at a AFMS show with two other judges. This show was held in a building with very poor lighting and several areas of the floor were almost dark.

In one of the dark areas we came upon this case of jewelry. So first off we couldn't see in the case. When we got some flashlights in order to judge we found that with the exception of one new item in the case it didn't look like the silver had not been polished since the last time I had seen the case. I hate to admit it but there are still some judges whose prejudices still predominate. Because of the fact that it was hard to see into the case and the pieces were not polished, the other two judges could not see the fine workmanship and unique designs of the various pieces. After much arguing the case ended up with a lower score than deserved.

A couple of cases later we came across another Southwest jewelry style case. This case was well lit, the pieces were pretty nicely polished but there was not a single unique piece in the case. It was the same type of jewelry found in every store in the southwest in America in the early 1970s. The other judges wanted to give this case every point for design even with nothing new or different. This case ended up with a higher score than deserved.

The point of all this is that when exhibiting make sure your case is visible and the specimens are prepared properly.

For the judges, don't let first impressions cloud your judging, don't give points that are not deserved and don't take points away when they are deserved just because you don't like the presentation.

B. Jay Bowman, AFMS URC Chair
5788 Bowman Road, Ponca City, OK 74604.

BLM News Bytes

Issure 151, April 8, 2004, BLM California

"Hollister seeks public input to develop revised resource management plan" (BLM California news release, 04/01/2004)
BLM's Hollister Field Office is asking the pubic to participate in the development of a revised resource management plan for the central coast region. The public is encouraged to help identify issues, questions, and concerns during the scoping phase, which begins May 3 and continues until August 2, 2004.

"Federal agencies seek nominations for national monument advisory committee" (BLM California news release, 04/02/2004)
The Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service call for nominating applications from the public, to fill five positions on the Santa Rosa & San Jacinto Mountains National Monument Advisory Committee. The positions will include one representative each for the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians, the cities of Rancho Mirage and Palm Desert, the Winter Park Authority, and the Pinyon Community Council.

"Students teach students about geology" (Barstow Desert Dispatch, 04/01/2004)
"About a dozen high school student docents taught third-graders about geology...at the newly revamped Desert Discovery Center..... Rose Foster, who coordinates volunteer efforts for the Bureau of Land Management's Barstow field office, said the goal of the program is to have the third-graders eventually teach the science lessons when they reach ninth grade, which will be the final step in the Junior Naturalist Certification Program."