Parrsboro Gem and Mineral Show millions of years in the making

Published on August 18, 2014

PARRSBORO – Geologists and local geological museums from Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec and Ontario banded together for Parrsboro’s 49th Gem and Mineral Show Saturday at the Parrsboro arena.

“We want to promote rocks and fossils on our shore. This began because people were finding valuable rocks and fossils and did not know what to do with them,” said Karen Dickenson, chair of the board for the Cumberland Geological Society.

They manage the Fundy Geological museum and sponsor the event every year.

“Parrsboro is also home to the fossils of smallest dinosaur in the world. We share many similar rocks with places from all over the world,” said Dickenson.

Long ago all of the continents were one, a super-continent called Pangaea. Eventually the super-continent broke apart and drifted away into the seven continents we have today.

“This is why it is possible for places like India to have similar rocks and fossils as us,” said Dickenson.

Fossils and minerals were not the only thing at the show.

“It’s not all jewelry and rocks,” said Dickenson. “There’s gold panning too. It is everything that comes from our earth.”

Tim Lake is new to the business of collecting rocks and minerals. He collects them to sell or make into jewelry.

His wife Sharlene Lake owns and operates From the Sea to Me Jewels.

Their inventory is made up from rocks he has collected locally. 

“I got into this about a year ago. Eldon George taught me everything I know," said Tim. "He is a wonderful resource here in Parrsboro. He is one of the original cofounders of the Gem and Mineral show."

Graham Williams, a geologist with the Atlantic Geoscience Society talked about the importance of geology.

“The critical role of the geologist is to show how intimate our lives are with geology. Geology is not only rocks and minerals, it is every natural resource we use,” said Williams. “Geology is used when dealing with environmental concerns. Especially with waste management, or disposal of Nuclear waste.”

Geologists are used in waste disposal to make sure waste is disposed in a place where it cannot get into the water supply.

“They are also used when selecting where to dig a well. You wouldn’t want to use a source of water that was close to a pig farm for instance,” said Williams. “Geology is important for construction was well. You wouldn’t want a foundation in a place where the ground would give out, or build a parking lot with poor drainage.”

Another important concern for geologists is coastline erosion.

“You wouldn’t want to build a house on the edge of a cliff that will be fully eroded in a 30 years. Geologists have maps of this and can track erosion and predict the best sots to build.” said Williams