Loose in Tucson

This year's array of gem and mineral shows in Tucson, Arizona—40 shows at 38 venues—allowed attendees to see every kind of gemstone that's currently available. The three major shows—AGTA GemFair, Gem & Jewelry Exchange tent, and GLDA (Gem and Lapidary Dealers Association) show—all offered more finished jewelry than usual, but the outer shows displayed fewer gems and minerals and more rugs and beaded pottery than in the past, making it tough to uncover the hidden gem treasures. Nevertheless, there was no shortage of high-quality gems, including some unique and unusual specimens, in Tucson. Following are some of the highlights. EIGHT TRENDS IN TUCSON 1. Sunstone. The most-talked-about gem was sunstone from two sources: the original Ponderosa claim in Oregon and a new find in Tibet. Material from the Ponderosa Mine—which many believe is the source of the finest of al

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