"It's fun to see, especially the kids. It just makes everybody so happy."
The Baton Rouge Gem and Mineral Society held their 17th Annual Gem and Mineral Show at the Lamar Dixon Expo Center in Gonzales, Louisiana on August 10-11. On display were homemade jewelry, vintage jewelry, geodes, fossil specimens, and much more.
The event hosted a few vendors from Louisiana and others from out of state. There were also activities tailored to kids. With 18 vendors this year, there was a wide variety of displays highlighting each vendor's unique approach to the craft.
Tim O'Bryan, the owner of O'Bryan's Minerals out of Lafayette displayed and sold rocks that he collected himself. He curates the development of the final product from start to finish. He said his passion began several years ago while still in the Air Force.
"I was looking for another job after I retired, so I decided to turn my passion into this," O'Bryan said. He recently completed a 45-day trip where he traveled north collecting rocks for his business.
Wanda Gawarecki, with the Baton Rouge Gem and Mineral Society oversees the event. "It's fun to see, especially the kids. It just makes everybody so happy," Gawarecki said.
The Baton Rouge Gem and Mineral Society began in 1964 with 22 members with a mission to promote a greater interest in rocks, minerals, fossils, and gemstones in order to develop a greater appreciation for earth sciences.
The society meets every fourth Tuesday of the month and hosts field trips for members of all ages.