MEETINGS: At Worcester Mineral Club, we have been navigating the Covid-19 pandemic nearly seamlessly. We only needed to cancel one meeting, in March, 2020. Our president, Bob Manlick, successfully pivoted to Zoom Meetings by April, 2020 and we haven’t cancelled a meeting since! Meeting presentations resumed shortly thereafter and have proven to be quite engaging, informative, and educatonal on Zoom.
AUCTIONS: We held our in-person annual auction (live and silent) in December, 2021 at the Trinity Episcopal Church after having to cancel the annual auction in 2020 because of Covid-19. It was one of our most successful auctions ever held! Our Vice President, Sara Furbush, Program Chair, Rick Cernak, and Treasurer, Ken Gliesman were able to conduct several smaller virtual auctions during our monthly meetings on Zoom in the interim.
FIELD TRIPS: We enjoyed successful mineral collecting field trips at 18 different sites last year, including Quabbin Aqueduct Shaft 10, the Hewitt Mine in CT, and fossil sites in upstate New York early in the season. In June, July, and early August, we had some remarkable field trips to 4 classic collecting sites in Western Massachusetts: The Betts Manganese Mine, Loudville Lead Mines, Barrus Lithium Pegmatite, and Chester Emery Mines. In mid-August, we enjoyed the Keating Quarry in Lunenburg, MA; and then in late August, many of us travelled north to Hayes Ledges and the Tamminen Quarry in Greenwood, ME, plus the Havey Quarry in Poland, ME. In early September, several members ventured out to our Herkimer claims in Fonda, NY. In the second half of the month, we went to two pegmatite mines in New Hampshire, the Beauregard and Chickering Mines. In October, we had a stellar day at the Tripp and Clark Mines in Alstead, NH. On November 6, WMC had the privilege of being the first mineral club to enjoy a field trip at the historic Ruggles Mine in Grafton, NH as part of an independent study of the mine dump areas by one of our active members. An encore field trip to the Hewitt Mine in Haddam, CT was the site of our final field trip of the 2021 season. We expect the 2022 field trip season to start in April with fluorescent minerals collecting at Sterling Hill, NJ. Members can sign up for upcoming field trips when announced in the member newsletter, NEW DIGGINGS, or announcement emails sent to members.
Worcester Mineral Club 2022 Meeting Schedule
Next Meeting: Tuesday, May 17, 2022 Venue and Program TBD
Everyone is welcome to come attend a monthly meeting, and bring your rocks to in-person meeting of course! Non – members can attend our Zoom meetings by notifying our president a few days in advance by clicking Contact Us in the main menu above. New members can sign-up for full membership on-line by following the prompts in the Join The Club page by clicking the link in the menu above, or apply for membership at our in-person meetings meetings.
In Person Meeting Location: Trinity Episcopal Church, 440 Main Street, Shrewsbury, MA
The club meets on the third Tuesday of each month at 7 PM (except December, it’s the second Tuesday; and no meetings during the heart of field trip season in July and August). Trips to collecting sites, museums, and special events are planned throughout the year.
The meetings generally consist of a short business agenda followed by an educational or informative program. Programs are usually presented by speakers, often with slides, specimens, or other visual aids, films, or demonstrations. Speakers talk on a variety of topics and range from our own club members with experiences or expertise to share, to prominent researchers that work in an Earth science field. Children’s educational programs and activities are planned for meetings as interest arises. There are door prizes drawn at most of our in-person meetings and refreshments are usually available. In addition, everyone is encouraged to bring in specimens or their lapidary work to display to the members.
MEETING CANCELLATIONS: In the event we need to cancel a meeting due to weather conditions, we will send an email notification. You may also contact one of the club officers if you are unsure about a meeting’s status.
**Masks and social distancing are required on all club-sponsored trips until further notice.
**There may be a check by the trip leader for conformance; if you are missing required safety equipment, you may be turned away.
**No dogs allowed unless explicit prior permission has been requested and granted by the land owner.
Ten Important Things You Need on Mineral Collecting Field Trips:
1. Heavy duty work gloves, work boots, appropriate clothing.
2. Protective eye and head gear.
3. Small pry bar.
4. Crack hammer & baby sledge.
5. First aid kit
6. Water & food.
7. Bug spray and sun screen.
8. Chisel (regular & bull point).
9. Rags or newspaper to wrap your finds.
10. A large backpack or 5 gallon bucket to put it all in!!
(Note: Depending on the geology and conditions other tools may be needed)
To view a video on field trip Covid safety, click here:
Sterling Mine – Ogdensburg, NJ
Ruggles Mine – Grafton, NH., Historic File