Table of Contents
President's Message
From the Editor
All American Report
Juniors Activities Report
New California Law
Safety Report
One Rock Club's Success
Society Name Change
CFMS Field Trips North Seminar
Program Aids

Member Recognition
Federation Show - Exhibiting
Petrified Wood Seminar
New I.R.S. Filing Requirement
CFMS Slide & Video Program Library
Field Trips North Report
Long Range Planning
CFMS Rules Committee
CFMS Website
BLM Website

President's Message

Bural LaRue - CFMS President -  2007

By Bural LaRue, CFMS President

Happy New Year!

Let's make 2008 a really fun year. How do we do that?

Start by sharing your particular skills with everyone you meet. Force yourself to BE FRIENDLY! My dad told me once "a stranger is just a friend I haven't met yet". I have tried to think that way all my life and I've been truly blessed with friends from coast to coast.

Let's invite new friends to our meetings. Have programs for your meetings. If you don't have a guest speaker, use our slide and video library. We have numerous great programs available.

Field trips and workshops are very important. Encourage your field trip chairman to bring rough and polished samples of the material you plan to collect on your next field trip to the meeting.

Our Federation needs your help. The recent Fall Business meeting was not well attended. We barely had a quorum. This is your Federation and we need each club to have a representative there. If your Director can't attend, please send someone in his/her place. Our next meeting will be at the Ventura show in June. I would love to see every club have a representative at the Directors meeting. Start getting ready for the show and let's have a safe and fun-filled 2008.

From the Editor

Fred Ott

By Fred Ott, Editor 2008

"Six months ago, I couldn't even spell Editor•  •  . Now I ARE one!!

Well, we're off to a great start! Thanks to those of you who have emailed newsletter articles to me for this first issue of 2008. I'll try to send reminders to each committee chairperson towards the end of each month. My challenge will be to fit everything into a nice "package" that won't exacerbate Pat LaRue and cost a lot more in postage. Ah, the challenges of being an editor•  ..

And, for those of you who are not committee chairs, I'd encourage you to submit information to me that you feel would be of interest to members of the Federation.

P.S The next time I volunteer for something, I think I'll check the "fine print"!

All American Report

Dot Beachler

By Dot Beachler

The past few newsletters have covered the All American report. Sections 1 through 5 have been listed. The last two sections (6 & 7) will now bring the project report to a close. Let's get going!

Section 6 - Government Agency and Legislative Relations

Do any of your club members:

  1. Serve on agency committees?
  2. Provide comments on agency proposals?
  3. Contact congressmen about legislation affecting our access and collecting?
Does your club or any member support lobbying organizations (such as ALAA)?

Again, supporting material should be included.

Section 7 - Overall Format and Presentation

Simply put, this covers neatness, organization, grammar and spelling.

Now look at what you did! The project is completed and you have a history of your club and club members for the year.

If you have any questions, please contact me. Let's have a GREAT showing with many entries!


Please, if you have one of the Record books containing all the trophies and who has competed for them over the years, contact either: Dee Holland, Chair, Tom Burchard or Marion Roberts. The books are not in three-ring binders, they are hard cover with brass prongs that go thru the pages on the left hand side. They should have a CFMS Triangle on the front.

Junior Activities Report

Jim Brace-Thompson

By Jim Brace-Thompson

Seeking Help, Providing Thanks

Help wanted!

This month's column formally marks the start of my second decade as CFMS Junior Activities Chair. While it's been both a joy and a privilege to serve the CFMS in this good post these past 10 years, I also fear becoming like those Senators or Congressmen who overstay their term of public service and whose message eventually turns old and stale and all-too-predictable.

To prevent that fate, at the past two CFMS meetings in June and November, I've publicly called for a volunteer to take over as Junior Activities Chair. I'd like to re-issue that call today. I'm in it for at least another year, particularly to help implement plans for the Kids Booth at the CFMS Show in June, for which I have a lot of ideas and enthusiasm. But if you or a fellow club member has an interest in taking over starting in 2009, please call (805-659-3577) or email ( to start serving an "apprenticeship" in 2008 to make for a smooth transition. I'll be remaining as Junior Activities Chair for the AFMS for as long as they'll have me in order to continue refining and expanding the FRA Merit Badge program, so you don't need to worry about taking on that. Mainly, you just need to act as a clearinghouse for ideas about kids' activities and ways to interest and involve more kids in our fair hobby, contribute a monthly column to the CFMS Newsletter, and help connect the Juniors leaders of the various CFMS clubs with one another.

If someone is doing a bang-up job working with kids in your club, then let's share their expertise and enthusiasm! Please encourage them to call me to talk about taking on the CFMS Junior Activities Chair in 2009, with a warm-up period in 2008, in order to inject new blood and new ideas to keep our juniors' programs fresh and interesting.

Thank you!

Meanwhile, as I wait for my phone to ring, I'd like to offer some sincere thanks. At the November CFMS Directors' Meeting, I noted that I'll be involved in running kids activities at the June CFMS Show and that I'll also be working with the three Ventura County clubs to run a silent auction, with at least a portion of the proceeds going to the endowment fund to honor Ray Meisenheimer. I issued a call for donations of materials toward these endeavors. Well, I'm very pleased to report that within less than a week, Bob and Jeane Stultz and Cal Clason had materials in my hands: large rocks for the silent auction, tumbled stones and Apache tears for the kids, agates of all sorts, and more! All is greatly appreciated and will find good use at the June show. Thank you, Bob, Jeane, and Cal! I welcome further donations from anyone and everyone. Next month, I'll list my plans for the Kids Booth, along with a list of specific materials we'll need. For the moment, though, rev up those rock tumblers, and-come June-get ready for fun!

New California Law

Mike Kokinos align=By Mike Kokinos, CFMS Tax Advisor

Current California law requires a tax-exempt organization that has obtained Federal exemption under I.R.C. Section 501(c)(3) to file a complete application for exemption and include the Federal application package. A fee of $25.00 is required.

The new law is effective January 1, 2008. The California application package will include a Form 3500A and a copy of the Federal exemption letter. The $25.00 filing fee is not required. The new law only applies where the Federal exemption is under I.R.C. Section 501(c)(3).

This new law almost exclusively affects societies that changed their exemption from another section of the I.R.C. to Section 501(c)(3) but did not follow up and change the California exemption. If this applies to your society, make sure the Form 3500A is not filed until January 1, 2008.

If your Society is able to take advantage of the new law, the Form 3500A can be downloaded from the Franchise Tax Board Website.

I will assist any Society that needs my help.


Chuck McKie

By Chuck McKie

Kitchen Safety

The kitchen is one of the most dangerous rooms in the house. It contains many hazards that can cause burns and unintentional fires. Every year in Phoenix, more than 300 residential fires start in the kitchen, the largest category for causes of residential fires. It's important to recognize proper heating and cooking equipment functions, and to know how to extinguish a grease fire. Taking steps to protect young children from these heating and cooking appliances can prevent damaging fires, injuries and loss of life.

Ovens and Ranges

Always make sure the oven and stove top is clean. If not, clean them thoroughly and safely. Residue grease and food can catch fire. Keep pot handles turned inward, away from the edge of the stove. Don't wear long, loose sleeves that can hang over the stove while cooking. An electric burner coil can reach a temperature of more than 1,000 degrees Fahrenheit. This can ignite clothing even after the coil has been turned off.

Flammable fabrics, such as towels, dish rags or curtains can be ignited merely by being used or stored near a gas or electric range. Vapors from contact cement, gasoline, cleaning fluids or other flammable liquids can be ignited by the pilot of the kitchen range.

Children in the Kitchen

Children and kitchens aren't a good mix. Continuous and adequate supervision of children in the kitchen is of prime importance. As a child's mobility and curiosity increases, appropriate supervision becomes essential. Keep all hot items at a safe distance from a child. Keep the child at a safe distance from all hot items by using highchairs, child safety gates, playpens, etc. Create a safe zone for children. Keep them out of the household traffic path and check for their location before moving any hot or heavy item. Remove tablecloths and placemats when toddlers are present. They can tug and pull on everything within their reach. Hot or heavy items can be easily pulled on top of them. Never give children pots and pans to play with. Children may reach for this "toy" when it contains hot liquid or food. An oven door can get hot enough to burn a youngster who might fall or lean against it. It can be particularly dangerous for a child just learning to walk who may use the door for support; the child is often unable to let go before suffering a burn. Keep small children out of the kitchen when the oven is in use.

Grease Fires

If a grease fire erupts in a pan on top of the stove, quickly and carefully cover the pan with a lid or a larger pan. Never use water. If the fire is in the oven, turn the controls off and close the door tightly. This will smother the flames. Better yet, have a portable fire extinguisher handy and know how to use it. The Phoenix Fire Department recommends having a 2A10BC fire extinguisher in the kitchen; make sure it is charged at all times. If you suspect there may be fire still smoldering somewhere in the cabinets or the woodwork after such an experience, don't hesitate to call the fire department.


Use only appliances that have received an Underwriters' Laboratory or Factory Mutual testing label. Do not allow appliance cords to dangle over the edge of counter tops or tables. Children may pull at them and injure themselves. Or you may catch Them unintentionally and pull them off the counter. Do not overload electrical circuits. Unplug appliances when not in use. If an appliance smells funny, doesn't function correctly, or has frayed or broken wiring, have it repaired or replaced.

Microwave Ovens

Burns associated with the use or misuse of microwave ovens are increasing. The scald burn is the most common type of burn and most involve the hands. The age distribution is rather broad, but there continues to be a large number of young children who sustain the more serious burns. The single most common cause of burn injury is simply the fact that people do not expect items heated in the microwave oven to present the same risk as items heated by other more conventional means. Many people do not fully appreciate or understand how the microwave oven heats food. The fact that a food container may not be hot may mislead an individual to assume that the food itself is not really hot - thus a burn injury occurs.


The single most important prevention measure is to read and follow the directions. The directions associated with the operation of the microwave oven and the specific directions associated with heating prepared or packaged foods are equally important. Use a pot holder or appropriate utensil to remove lids and coverings from heated containers to prevent steam or contact burns. This also is necessary when removing items that may have been heated or extended periods of time - the container may be hot. Be sure children are old enough to understand the safe use of the microwave oven before allowing them to heat foods. Children under the age of seven may not be able to read and follow directions and are at a higher risk potential than older children. Their height is also an important factor. Some manufacturers do not recommend that their products be heated in a microwave oven. Be sure you follow their recommendations. (For example, some baby foods are not to be heated in a microwave. And jelly-filled donuts can be a major source of mouth burns.) Use caution when handling and cutting thick pieces of meat after heating, especially meats with considerable fat. Spattering of hot fat and meat juices may occur.

Environmental Control

Puncture plastic pouches and plastic wrap covering before heating. This will reduce the risk of a vapor pressure build up and prevent steam burns. Put a cut in potato skins or other vegetables to reduce the risk of "bursting" when you cut into it after it is heated. Eggs should be removed from the shell before being cooked in the microwave oven. The egg in a shell may explode causing both mechanical and thermal injuries. Identify containers, dishes and utensils that are safe for use in the microwave oven. Some items are not "microwave safe" and may become very hot or even burst when heated in the microwave oven. When using smooth vessels for heating liquids, place a plastic spoon in the vessel during the heating process. This will prevent the "super heated" phenomenon that may result in liquid spattering and scald burns.

Check for the presence of metal when reheating some "fast food" items. Aluminum foil, staples in bags, twist-ties, etc. may become very hot and ignite combustible containers.

Children who are permitted to operate the microwave oven should be tall enough to be able to safely remove items from the oven. One major risk is facial burns, which occur among children whose height puts their face at the level of the heating chamber of the microwave oven.

One Rock Club's Success

By Shep Koss, Sierra Pelona Rock Club

Many clubs have within their charter "to promote rock hounding" and "to promote a public service". We, the Sierra Pelona Rock Club, do as well.

Earlier this year we were contacted by the Girl Scout Council of Santa Clarita about helping their scouts earn Merit badges. Last spring we left a trip of over fifty scouts and their troop leaders to a nearby collecting site and broke into smaller groups, each being led by a club member, as we showed the scouts how to find and identify minerals. It was a rousing success.

But then came the next question, "Great! Now I have all these rocks. NOW what?" Foreseeing this, we've all passed through that stage, we followed up with a simple jewelry making class and gave a lecture, with examples, on beginning tumbling. The scouts supplied the beading supplies following our list of recommendations as each girl picked a tumbled stone they liked and matching bell caps, proper length leather cord, and associated cord clasps.

Club members passed from table to table to assist in gluing and assembly of simple necklaces. As the glue dried we gave a lecture on tumbling and rockhounding in general, showed examples of other tumbled rocks, and examples of more intricate jewelry involving cabochons as the local newspaper took photos and interviewed.

The results? Dozens of smiling faces, more planned field trips with larger attendance, more jewelry classes, a full page newspaper story (great publicity!) and more members for the club. A win-win situation.

How did the scouts find out about us to start with? At local fairs where we had booths with specimens and promotional material.

We've now graduated from helping scouts not only with geology related badges but now have trips planned for fossils, to help with those badges as well. Trips are now booked months in advance with larger numbers of attendees expected and their waiting list grows as well. So much so, that the lists fill within a day even though we increased attendance openings by 50%. We try to limit each club member's responsibility to no more than a dozen girls and their troop leader. Even so, we find more troops approaching us for trips.

We quickly realized the importance of keeping sites nearby and simple and search for float specimens only. Make them a list of basic tools and supplies to bring. Stress safety. This is all new to them even though your club may have worked that site to death. Stay excited. Each trip has a new audience so treat them as such. Contact your local paper to benefit as well. The scouts want exposure too. Don't overbook attendance. Keep things manageable.

And, above all, enjoy it! Your newbies will!

Society Name Change

By Kirk Kegel - Director - SOCGEMS

The Capistrano Valley Rock and Mineral Club has received approval from the California Secretary of State and completed its name change and is now the SOUTH ORANGE COUNTY GEM and MINERAL SOCIETY. The club changed its name to identify more with their geographic area and also to better define their group as a non-profit educational resource in their community. The club is in the process of developing a Society web site and has planned a publicity campaign for 2008. A special "Thank You!" to Mike Kokinos for his patient and invaluable help in completing the necessary documentation.

CFMS Field Trips - North Seminar

Dick Pankey

By Dick Pankey

Knowing Where You Are
Checking Land Status

Last October Dave Muster, our FT-N chairman, conducted this seminar, which was received with rave reviews. Unfortunately the attendance was low. By popular demand this seminar is scheduled again for April 2008.

The purpose of knowing where you are is two fold. All field trip leaders and collectors need to know where they are and where they should not be. While we may collect on public land - BLM and Forest Service land - we cannot collect on private or claimed land without permission. It is the responsibility of the collector to know the status of the land on which they intend to collect. It is the responsibility of the field trip leader to know the status of the land and determine boundaries before people are led to an area with private land and/or claims.

This seminar addresses what you need to know about determining land status, choosing and reading maps, GPS and other tools.

The seminar will be held on Saturday, April 12, 2008 at the Community Presbyterian Church in Pittsburg CA. An announcement flier with details and directions will be issued in early January. This seminar is for field trip leaders, and all rockhounds that enjoy collecting; all members and guests are welcome.

Mark your calendar now, watch for the announcement flier and plan to attend this informative seminar.

Rockhound Sticker Promote Rockhounding
Display your sticker

Program Aids

Cheri George

By Cheri George

As Program Aids Chairman, I will be retaining this position at least through the next year. As you know, the Podium People Brochure will be 2 years old as of May 2008. This means I will be publishing a new one. As usual I ask for your help, mostly in the locating of great speakers, the ones that you have found from other sources than our brochure. If you have had someone who was truly wonderful, please ask them if they would consider being added to our resource. All you need to do is send their name, address, phone, email, etc to me and I will do the rest. Of course you should also include your name and your club, so that I can give them the name of their reference.

I am forever grateful for the people who have commented on the brochure and welcome any and all comments in the future.

Member Recognition

Loretta Ogden

By Loretta Ogden

This will be the last Member Recognition nominees for 2007 and so far I have not received any for 2008 but I hope they will be spilling in for the New Year. I am asking that you please send them to me by E-mail, as I will be much busier this year, I will be doing this job for the AFMS also. If you do not have access to e-mail yourself please ask someone in your club to do it for you. Thanks and I am looking forward to hearing from you soon.

The Peninsula Gem & Geology Society

The Peninsula Gem & Geology Society is proud to nominate Colleen McGann as our 2007 CFMS Club Education Through Sharing, Rockhound of the Year. She has been an extraordinary member of our club nearly 2 decades, giving an enormous amount of personal time and knowledge for the benefit of our club, our members, our Federation and our hobby in general. She has chaired all of the major offices, has been President for a number of years when needed, and has backed up everyone in any club function. Colleen has prepared several display cases, both for educational purposes and for competition, with which she has won both awards in club and Federation shows. She has presented programs both for our club and for neighboring clubs, has been a mainstay on fieldtrips and at shows, and shares her knowledge of rocks, minerals and the locations for their collection. Colleen has served on various committees and offices of the California Federation of Mineralogical Societies, including President of the Federation in 2006. Colleen McGann has our deepest respect and gratitude. She deserves to be recognized in the greater rockhound community.

Gem Carvers Guild of America

Adele "Sammy" Florida has been involved ever since she joined the club 15 years ago. Her main interest is working with young children at the Los Angeles and Orange County Fairs and at local gem and mineral shows. She provides soapstone "blanks" of hearts and arrowheads for the youngsters to finish shaping with files while visiting her demo table. In spite of her intense work schedule she has been the faithful editor and publisher of the clubs newsletter for many years. Sammy volunteers her home for the annual summer swim and potluck party.

Pasadena Lapidary Society

Ed and Corinne actively supports All phases of the clubs activities. Ed is in charge of visiting schools to teach youngsters the basics of collecting and identifying rocks and leaves samples for them to study. With Corinne they demonstrate several forms of bead, wire work, and chain making using hand made wood and nail fixtures at the monthly workshop. Ed is one of the backbones of the annual show, receiving and return of the club cases and rental tables, scheduling setup and layout for the display cases and tables. They demonstrate both days of the show. Ed is display person and reports on the items members bring in to share at the meetings. They are both active in planning and attending the clubs regular field trips.

South Bay Lapidary Society

Helga and Werner Wagener have been in the South Bay Lapidary Society for a number of years and have always had a table` at our show with a display of Petrified Wood for sale plus a case of `their best samples. They give each child a piece of petrified wood at the show. Helga and Werner have` gone to many schools to give talks to the children, also to other Clubs. They have studied extensively to learn as much as possible and also talked to other Dealers. They give lectures in their home for children and show them their back yard so the children can see what large pieces of Petrified Wood looks like in the rough. We are proud to nominate these exceptional members as our Rockhounds of the Year.

Sutter Buttes Gem & Mineral Society

Sutter Buttes Gem & Mineral Society wish to present Ed Eden as our Education Through Sharing Nominee. He joined us in 1994 and has held several offices and show chairman. He sets up many interesting programs and works tirelessly at the show. He is active with the Boy Scouts, Library, Cancer Society and his church. He does rock identification and supplies specimens for our Scout Day. He is a very valuable member and we would like to recognize him for his many years of services.

Federation Show-Exhibiting

By Dick and Betty Pankey

The show packet with forms and information were distributed at the Directors' Meeting in Visalia. Also, all of the forms are now available on the CFMS Web Page under "Forms 2008." Please make these forms available to your members, especially those who want to exhibit or compete.

TAt the Federation Shows these past few years the judges and Rules Committee have offered to evaluate any non-competitive case and make suggestions for improvements in showmanship and for possible competition. If you would like your case evaluated just write "Evaluate" on the entry form or ask us at the Show.

TRemember, if you are not bringing your own case, please send your $10.00 check for each case you wish to rent. This applies to Non-competitive cases as well as Competitive cases.

TWe have plenty of space for all individuals and clubs who wish to exhibit. We are really hoping for big participation in exhibiting at our 2008 Show. We encourage clubs and individuals to bring their own cases; but cases will be available.

TDetails on case dimensions will be provided in a future Exhibiting article as soon as we can get them and no later than the May issue of the CFMS Newsletter.

TThis is the Federation Show, hosted and put on by the Federation; your club and your members are the Federation. This is your show and every club should want to participate and be represented in the show.

8th Annual Petrified Wood Identification Seminar


By Debbie Bunn

The Fossils for Fun Society, in cooperation with Sierra College, will present the 8th Annual Petrified Wood Identification Seminar, featuring Walt Wright, Paleobotanist, as lecturer.

Mark your calendars for March 14th through 19th, 2008 for this extremely popular seminar which will be held at Sierra College, Room 101, Sewell Hall, in Rocklin, CA.

This is your opportunity to learn about the complex and beautiful world of petrified wood. Become more knowledgeable about the woods in your own collection and about what and where to collect and buy. Learn about fossilization of wood: its age, origin, and occurrence, and how to identify kinds of petrified wood with simple tools.

Seminar Schedule:

Friday, March 14 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 15 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 16 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

On Monday, March 17th, Walt will lead an optional field trip which will be open to seminar attendees only.

For more information, contact:

Debbie Bunn at (916) 929-6665 or
Carole Lockhart at (916) 638-2314.

New Internal Revenue Service Filing Requirements

By Mike Kokinos

The Internal Revenue Service has expanded the requirement to file the new electronic annual return to tax exempt organizations whose gross receipts are normally less than $5,000.00.

We have societies in the CFMS that have always had gross receipts less than $5,000.00. These societies are not required to apply for tax exemption but are treated as exempt. The new provision requires these societies to also file the new electronic annual return even if they never filed for exemption. It does not require them to file for exemption.

t is highly likely these societies will not receive the return information from the Service. The burden falls to the society to obtain the information and file the return. The IRS Exempt Organizations informed me they will be using the EIN (employer Identification number) data base for the filings. The EIN will be needed when filing.

What type of exemption do these societies have? It is my opinion that it depends on their Articles of Incorporation (corporations) or Constitution (unincorporated) (organizing documents). The wording of these documents and the actual activities of an organization will determine which section of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) applies. It is my belief that all active mineral and gem societies are eligible for exemption under IRC Section 501(c)(3) (charitable and educational). What language needs to be included in these organizing documents to be treated as a 501(c)(3)?

  • Purposes that are educational in nature with the public invited to all educational activities.
  • Statement that the organization will not aid or oppose candidates for public office.
  • Statement that in the event of dissolution remaining assets will go to another 501(c)(3) organization.
  • Statement that the organization will not to a substantial degree attempt to influence legislation.

The actual wording for the statements can be found in IRS Publication 557. If the current organizing document does not include these statements, I recommend filing a Certificate of Amendment (corporations) or revising the Constitution (unincorporated).

If your society wants to verify its status with the IRS, the Exempt Organizations can be reached at (877) 829-5500.

I will answer any questions if you email me at

CFMS Slide and Video Program Library

Bill Gissler

By Bill Gissler

The CFMS Slide and Video Program Library was established by Federation Directors over 30 years ago to provide affiliated clubs with educational programs for monthly meetings, study groups, shows and other club activities.

Programs are added to the Library continually from various sources - AFMS annual Program Competition, donations from clubs and private companies and individuals, and Library purchases. Today the Library includes 154 slide, 135 VHS, 27 DVD and 8 CD-ROM programs. They are listed on the web site ( where they are updated as soon as they are available; and in a hard copy catalog format which is updated every two years and distributed to Federation Directors at the business meeting. New programs are also reported in the CFMS Newsletter. Programs deal with lapidary crafts, field trips, geology, minerals and related subjects of interest.

How does the library function? The library is presently stored at the home of the Gisslers' in Santa Clara. They maintain and operate it as volunteers, serving at the request of the CFMS President. Bill Gissler is responsible for the daily operation. He keeps the records and submits a monthly report to CFMS Executive Secretary/ Treasurer. He also corresponds with other AFMS Federation librarians and the Program Competition coordinator. With the other AFMS librarians he judges the annual Program Competition entries. Bill is assisted by his wife Sharon, who handles the telephone requests and mailings. Colleen McGann provides back up when the Gisslers are not available.

How do you order programs? A program can be order by phone, e-mail or postal mail. An order form can be found on the web site and in the catalog. The preferred way is to use the order form via postal or e-mail, made 30 days in advance of the date of showing. If your request by e-mail or phone is not acknowledged within three days, contact Colleen. Contact numbers are listed under the committee roster in the Newsletter.

What can you do to improve the program library? Three things will help: (1) Send your review comments when returning a program; (2) Donate or refer video programs that you think others would like to see; (3) enter a program in AFMS Program Competition.

Field Trips North

Dave Muster

By Dave Muster

It has been a great year for rockhounds! I would personally like to thank you for all the Emails and pictures of your fieldtrips. Kudos! Some have provided their clubs with programs that were astonishing. Again, thank you. I'm sure that your club Editor would appreciate an article. We all like to read articles in a magazine, but an article in the club bulletin by a club member you know, is special.

That's why I'm going to write the next six pages telling you what I did this year! Not. We are going to have a very informative seminar in Pittsburg, California, on April 12, '08, for all rockhounds. It is for all ages, all clubs and non-club members with an interest in Earth Sciences, fieldtrip protocol, GPS & maps. Please bring your pictures, maps and stories. Bring the rocks too! There'll be more, later.

Dick Pankey, Dave Muster, and Dennis Freiburger will be there to facilitate the event, and answer any questions. Dick will get you prepared for a fieldtrip. Dennis will show you how to pre-plan your fieldtrip from home using digital maps and the use of a GPS. I'll think of something to say, so it should be a great time! Hope to see you there!

Since the C.F.M.S. meeting in Visalia I have been working on finding out how many survey base meridians we have in California. It's filed away in a book somewhere. I'll bring some rocks to the next meeting myself and you do the same!

Long Range Planning

By Dick Pankey

I got an e-mail today from a new Federation Director of a fairly large club today. She had been a member there for over 10 years and had heard little about the Federation and none of the members were familiar with what the Federation is all about. At the Friday evening Cracker Barrel at Visalia in November, I presented some objectives that I was going to work on this coming year in my new capacity as the Chairman of the Long Range Planning Committee. One of which was "Why CFMS?" And this e-mail is the perfect example of why we need to address the subject.

Those of us that are "active" in the Federation - directors (who attend meetings), committee people, and officers, - see first hand what the Federation does, "what it is all about." But in recent years, less than half of our clubs have directors attending and representing them at our Directors' Meetings. The CFMS Newsletter is sent to 3 members of each society, each month. But based on feedback and questions that I have received over the last few years the Newsletters and the information in them often do not get beyond the people that receive the Newsletter.

So, instead of bombarding you with a massive list of all that the Federation is and does, I want to find out what you, the clubs, the people of the Federation, know about and how you perceive the CFMS. I would like to hear from every club and any member. My request, please respond to the following questions:

  • How has your club benefited by being a member of the Federation?
  • What Federation services, programs, activities, etc. has your club received/participated in this year or in recent years?

Be as detailed as you wish; list all that you think of. To help you get started, look at the officers and committee roster in the back of the CFMS Newsletter. Please e-mail your responses to me at or mail them to me. This is the first in a planned series of articles. Over the next year I hope that we can improve the perception of the Federation and increase the understanding of "what the Federation is all about."

CFMS Rules Committee

Dee Holland

By Dee Holland


First, let me tell you that California has led the way in putting competitive exhibits in for the past three years! That's some feat in itself. Don't stop and don't let the CFMS down. We all love to brag at the AFMS show each year that CFMS is the leading regional federation with the most competitive exhibits.

If you didn't send a director to the Fall Business Meeting of the CFMS in Visalia and you haven't received your show packet for Ventura (June 27 - 29, 2008) you can get your application off the CFMS website. All the forms are already posted. Just download and return to TOM BURCHARD, 875 E. 4500 S, South Ogden, UT 84403-2931. The deadline is June 5, 2008. No exceptions unless you were under a death watch•  . Just kidding.

We will be using the current AFMS Uniform Rules updated through 2008, and you can get copies from either our lovely CFMS Executive Secretary/Treasurer, Pat LaRue or via the AFMS website: There was only one update for 2008 and it was in Petrified Wood, G-10.

All CFMS supplementary rules will be in this issue of the CFMS Newsletter. We have been in contact with each of those who have sponsored the supplemental trophies and they want to continue. See, they have faith in you too. Some of these supplementary trophies are automatic entries if you have already put in your competitive exhibit.

Open Division A - This is a category that takes exhibits that usually don't fit in other areas of competition. Example: gemtrees, mixed displays.

Minerals Division B - There are numerous categories in this division from cabinet size minerals to self-collected, to thumbnails and even micromounts (which need photos of the minerals and are judged under microscopes). Check it out.

Lapidary Division C - This includes cabochons, carvings, faceting and specialized lapidary. Intarsia comes under this category.

Jewelry Division D - This includes all metalsmithing, fabrication, casting and wirewrap, to name just a few.

Education Division E - This has two distinct categories: "How to" and "Concept". Look up the rules on this one, it a really fun category.

Fossil Division F - No, you can't put an elderly family member in this category! It's only animal and plant life.

Petrified Wood G - Does this really need an explanation??? This includes lapidary and non-lapidary treatment but it also includes plant life. If you're really into fossils you'll know about both the above division and also this one.

Scrimshaw H - This is done WITHOUT THE USE OF MOTORIZED TOOLS. Read more about this interesting art form.

Ultra-Violet UV - Without a blacklight, you're in real trouble! But this is certainly one of the most beautiful and least known categories.

Now that I've whetted your appetite, consider what you have in your collection and let's make this a banner year for competitive exhibits.

What can the CFMS Rules Committee do for you? Let us know. We stand ready to help individuals and/or clubs prepare for Ventura.

Dee Holland -
Tom Burchard -
Marion Roberts -

CFMS Website

Don Ogden

By Don Odgen, CFMS Internet Committee

The CFMS Website was updated to Y2008 in early December. Federation/Club Officers, Committee Chairs and Members should check out the site to see that their club, show, email, etc. information is correct. Your input is the only way the site can be corrected.

Following is a brief description of the site for those who have not visited it.

  1. The CFMS Website is an information site. It's location is
  2. Across the top of the screen is a navigation table of contents (nav table). The nav table contains links to web pages that come up on the main area of the screen below it.
  3. There are 12 nav table links. Welcome, Manuals, Forms, Calendar, Clubs, E-mail, Field Trips, Links, Newsletters, Photos, Shows, and Team.
  4. The main area of the screen changes to the new page when you click on that nav table link.
  5. For example, the Welcome page appears on the screen when the site is turned on. After that, the screen will change to the Form page when you click on the Form link.
Welcome page - Contains the Message Board, and quick links to CFMS info, Earthquake info, Flight arrival , etc.

Manuals page- Contains links to CFMS Slide & Video Program Library, Podium People & Speakers Directory, Society Aids Manual, and the Officers and Chairs Manual.

Forms page - Contains most of the CFMS forms.

Calendar page - Contains photos and some CFMS activity dates.

Clubs page - Contains pertinent information about all CFMS member clubs.

E-mail page - Contains member, Club/Society, and editors email addresses.

Field Trips page - Contains up and coming field trips and photos of previous trips.

Links page - Contains links to AFMS, other federations and CFMS club websites.

Newsletters page - Contains links to all CFMS newsletters from December 1998.

Photos page - Contains links to club and federation events from 1999.

Shows page - Contains current CFMS club shows.

Team page- Contains links to current Officers, current Committee members, etc.

BLM Website

By Fred Ott

The Bureau of Land Management has an excellent website to which you can subscribe and receive periodic (normally weekly) emails.

Each edition contains a lot of worthwhile information, some of which applies to rockhounding.

Just go to:

Next Month's Newsletter

Glenn Miller has obtained an extensive list of resources for getting rockhound maps, aerial photos and satellite date from the internet.

This is EXCELLENT information, but won't fit in the January newsletter•  •   - Fred