Guests are always welcome at our meetings!  They are held on the first Wednesday of the month (excluding holidays) at 7:30 PM at the Oxnard Performing Arts Center (map below).  The format includes an educational presentation, followed by refreshments, and a short business meeting.

Wednesday, May 1 – How to Create Amazing Ventura County Fair Displays!

Take your Ventura County Fair display from good to amazing!  Diane Cook, Superintendent of the Gem & Mineral Dept. will be discussing how to assemble a great display, what tools you’ll need and when the deadlines are.  The public is welcome to join us at 7:30 p.m. for this free  presentation.

Sunday, May 12, 2019 at 2:30 p.m.

Curiosity Rover, Gale Crater and evidence of flowing water on Mars
Time: 2:30 p.m.
Location: Geology 3656

Lecture by Dr. Ashwin Vasavada

Dr. Ashwin Vasavada of JPL, Project Scientist for the Curiosity Mars Rover. His title is “Curiosity Rover, Gale Crater and evidence of flowing water on Mars.” Nearly seven years after its dramatic arrival at Mars, the Curiosity Rover continues to reveal Mars as a once-habitable planet. Streams and lakes persisted there for millions of years and created landforms that Curiosity explores within Gale crater. While the water has long since disappeared, shifting sands and seasonal cycles of methane gas reveal a dynamic planet today. This talk will cover the latest findings from the mission, some striking images, the challenges of exploration, and what lies ahead.  For more info visit:

National Park Service

2019 Fee Free Days on Federal Public Lands

Here are the 2019 fee free days offered for recreation sites under the management of the National Park Service and the U.S. Forest Service.  While many parks, facilities and services associated with these agencies are free, some require a fee. Recreation fees, authorized by the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act, enable federal land management agencies to reinvest in the management of various recreation sites.

2019 Fee Free Days

Saturday, April 20 – Start of National Park Week / National Jr. Ranger Day
Sunday, August 25 – National Park Service Anniversary
Saturday, September 28 – National Public Lands Day
Monday, November 11 – Veterans Day

Death Valley National Park Fossil Thieves

$1,000 Reward – Death Valley National Park

Fossil Thieves stole several fossilized footprints, which had been left in a lakebed by mammals and birds, were missing. Now, Ryan F. Mandelbaum reports for Gizmodo, the National Park Service is asking for the public’s help in identifying a group of backpackers who may have information on the ancient tracks.  In a statement, the National Park Service released the photos of three men who might have witnessed the crime or have knowledge about the disappearance of the footprints. Investigators are offering an award of up to $1000 “for information leading to the identification, arrest, and conviction of those responsible,” the statement reads. According to Mandelbaum, investigators are planning to interview visitors who frequented the Park at the time of theft, in the hopes that someone will be able to provide valuable clues.

Destroying—or pilfering—the property of national parks is prohibited by law. “It’s illegal to collect fossils, rocks, or anything else in National Parks,” Park Superintendent Mike Reynolds said in a statement about the fossil thefts. “The purpose of National Parks is to conserve the landscape and everything it contains for the next generation. I ask that visitors come and enjoy all there is to see, and to leave it unimpaired for others to enjoy.”

The National Park Service has asked anyone with information about the stolen fossils to call the Investigative Services Branch at 1-888-653-0009.

The Oxnard Gem & Mineral Society meets at the:

Oxnard Performing Arts Center
Thousand Oaks Room
800 Hobson Way
Oxnard, California 93030