On Wednesday, we explored the Pueblo Gem and Mineral Show at the Riverpark Inn. We found an interesting array of meteorites, including the dealer “Palladot,” cutting and polishing olivine (peridot) gemstones from pallasite mateorites, “gemstones from outer space.” This concept will certainly catch on with meteorite collectors and astronomy buffs. My father, John, an experienced chemist and mineralogist, accompanied me then to the China Rose Restaurant, where we enjoyed lunch with Astronomy Contributing Editor David H. Levy, his wife Wendee, and their friends Thom and Twila Peck of the Tucson Amateur Astronomy Association.Following lunch, the schedule dictated rushing back to the Hotel Tucson City Center (formerly the InnSuites), where we intended to film Aerolite Meteorites’ Geoff Notkin and Steve Arnold (pictured at right) as a 5-minute spot. You are probably familiar with Geoff and Steve as TV’s Meteorite Men from the Science Channel. Well, enthusiasm and fun took us over, and our film of Geoff and Steve narrating their favorite meteorites in the room stretched to 32 minutes. You will see this posted on Astronomy.com when I return to Milwaukee next week. Be sure to check out their web sites at aerolite.org, Meteoritemen.com, and Stevearnoldmeteorites.com. The treasures you can explore there will astonish you.Tired from walking miles through the hotels in search of meteorites and meteorite dealers, we surveyed a few more rooms and then attended an exclusive event at Tucson’s Skybar with Geoff, Steve, and some of their friends. We ate pizza from the restaurant next door and watched the premiere of their new episode, “Gold Basin,” on the bar’s big screen. The Skybar would be a favorite for any Astronomy reader: decorated with stars and planets, the institution claims to be a science-oriented club influenced by astronomy. What a place!Of course, the episode was terrific, showing Steve and Geoff uncovering several Gold Basins, and during commercials they rushed up to the open mics to issue quiz challenges whereby attendees could win Gold Basin meteorites from their stock. It was a tremendous time, and one that will demand a good night’s sleep in order to hit the main Tucson Gem and Mineral Show, at the Convention Center, beginning tomorrow.
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David J. Eicher photo