Welcome to the Mineralogical Society of Arizona!

MSA, along with a Coalition of Rock & Gem Clubs, offer several fun and unique Field Trips throughout the year. We host many interesting Programs & Speakers and you are certain to meet new friends among our Rock and Mineral membership.

Refreshments are served at all MSA meetings and attendees have an exciting opportunity to win Great Mineral Raffle Prizes awarded to one Junior, one Adult, and one Visitor. Members who wear their MSA Name Badges to general meetings are also eligible for an additional raffle.

MSA participates in the annual Flagg Gem and Mineral Show in January, Tucson Gem & Mineral Show in February, Pinal Gem & Mineral Show and Minerals of Arizona Symposium in Spring, and Earth Science Day events in Fall.  We look forward to Exploring, Sharing, and Inspiring your participation in our hobby.

Check out the NEWSLETTER for information on meetings, field trips, and other events of interest to Mineralogists and Rockhounds of all ages.

ALERT!!! Be sure to check out MSA website under MSA CLUB for meeting location and time details. Click here for a printable meeting schedule. Meetings are held the second Thursday of the month, except as noted in the meeting schedule at Franciscan Renewal Center, 5802 E. Lincoln Drive, Scottsdale‎ AZ‎ 85253.

New Meeting Format

Junior Members should arrive by 6:40 PM for Junior Education program starting at 6:45 PM.
All other Members can arrive at 7:00 PM with presentation starting at 7:30 PM.
Meetings are held the second Thursday of the month, except as noted in the meeting schedule.
Brief business meeting and raffle after the program, with Refreshments, Silent Auctions, and Buy/Sell/Trade Event.

Contact us via Email: MSAClub1935@msaaz.org


October 11, 2018 Program:"The Art of Setting Up Your Case to Be Judged – And Why You Should Do It!” Presented by Miss Lauren Megaw

Our October 11th program will be presented by Miss Lauren Megaw, an accomplished collector and award-winning exhibitor on "The Art of Setting Up Your Case to Be Judged – And Why You Should Do It!”  Lauren’s talk is especially meaningful for MSA junior competitive exhibitors.  Lauren will discuss why displaying your collecting in a competitive environment is one of the best ways to improve your collection and potentially nerve wracking; everyone is judging you (literally that is what you signed up for)!  Over the course of her talk she will discuss why you should compete (and no, it’s not about the trophies though they are shiny), tips and tricks for putting together the best case possible, and even looking at the way specimens are judged. Yes, there will be a test at the end, but there are no right answers. Another facet of the talk will be the importance of mentorship both for competitors as well as the hobby at large.




Lauren Megaw with Aunt Mary Fong-Walker
setting up competitive mineral case
Tucson Gem & Mineral Show®;
Photo courtesy Lauren Megaw.

Les Presmyk presents Lauren Megaw with Desautels Trophy Tucson Gem & Mineral Show®;
Photo courtesy Lauren Megaw


Lauren started her journey in the mineral world essentially in utero. The daughter of Dr. Peter Megaw (Exhibits Chair of the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show®), Lauren grew up in the hobby. When she was really young, she began competing in the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show®, this provided her with consistent critique each year for her collection, as well as, community and self-created motivation to continue developing and refining her collection.

Competition also spurred her to start LAM Minerals, a way to raise funds to better build up her Team (Dad, Aunt, Uncle, Dr. Rob Lavinsky, Les Presmyk and may other friends and mentors). During her tenure as a competitor, she won Best Junior 2 times, Junior Master (4 times before being allowed to compete against the adults), Novice, Advanced and Master, Lidstrom Trophy (2008 and 2011), and finally Desautels Trophy.


Young Lauren was featured in BlueCap Productions DVDs of “The New Crystal Hunters” in Pala, California and “Smoky Hawk” in Colorado showcasing junior mineral collectors in the field.  Collecting shaped much of her childhood, so it’s not surprising that her college admissions essay was about collecting at the Rogerly Mine in Weardale, United Kingdom.  At University of Arizona, she conducted an independent study in optical mineralogy, and even did the optical measurements for the new mineral Yangite PbMnSi3O8•H2O under the watchful eye of Dr. Stan Evans and Dr. Bob Downs. 

The summer before her junior year in high school, she interned at the Harvard Mineral Museum under the wing of the renowned Dr. Carl Francis.  Lauren's love of minerals turned into a love for science, and she now is finishing up her degree in Geology at Stanford University. She is extremely passionate about getting other young people stoked on collecting minerals (in whatever capacity possible), which is why she is proud to present for Mineralogical Society of Arizona




Mineral of the Month: MINERAL SPECIES NAMED IN HONOR OF MSA MEMBERS By Dr. Raymond Grant and Chris Whitney-Smith

Minerals of the Month for October are Bobjonesite, Ruizite Raygrantite and Rongibbsite. These four minerals are named for Bob Jones, Joe Ruiz, Ray Grant and Ron Gibbs, all Life Members and a Future Life Member of Mineralogical Society of Arizona.

Bobjonesite is a hydrated vanadium sulfate, VO(SO4).3H2O. It is monoclinic, has a hardness of 1, and is pale blue to blue green in color. It forms as efforescences and crusts and will hydrate on exposure to air. It was first found at the North Mesa Mine Group in Emery County, Utah in a coal-clad, pyritiferous silicified tree in the Triassic age Shinarump conglomerate. Since then it has been found Bessie G Mine in La Plata County, Colorado and in fumaroles at the Tolbachik Volcano in Kamchatka, Russia.

Ruizite is a hydrated calcium manganese silicate, Ca2Mn2Si4O11(OH)4.2H2O. It is monoclinic, has a hardness of 5, and is orange to red-brown in color. It forms as an alteration mineral in contact metamorphic limestone deposits. It was first found at the Christmas Mine in Gila County, Arizona and later in Italy, South Africa, and Cornwall, Pennsylvania.

Raygrantite is a lead zinc sulfate silicate Pb10Zn(SO4)6(SiO4)2. It is triclinic, has a hardness of 3, and is colorless. It forms as a secondary alteration of primary sulfide minerals and was found in a mass of galena with other secondary minerals. So far it has only been found at the Evening Star Mine, in Maricopa County, Arizona

Rongibbsite is a zeolitic aluminosilicate and first natural aluminosilicate with lead Pb2(Si4Al)O11(OH). It is monoclinic, has a hardness of 5, and is colorless. It forms radiating, bladed to prismatic colorless crystals. So far it has only been found at the Evening Star Mine, Maricopa County, Arizona.

Members are invited to bring one sample from their collection of the mineral of the month and give a brief story about where they collected it or something about the specimen.

***Unknown minerals for identification can still be brought to the meetings***


BOBJONESITE, North Mesa No. 5 Mine, 
Emery County, Utah, U.S.A. 
Mr. Bob Jones

Photo courtesy of RRUFF.info.

RUIZITE, Christmas Mine, 
Gila County, Arizona, U.S.A. 
Hon. Joe A. Ruiz 

Photo courtesy of Mr. Harvey Jong.















RAYGRANTITE, Evening Star Mine,
Maricopa County, Arizona, U.S.A. 
Dr. Raymond W. Grant

Photo courtesy of Hon. Joe A. Ruiz.

RONGIBBSITE, Evening Star Mine,
Maricopa County, Arizona, U.S.A.
Mr. Ronald B. Gibbs
Photo courtesy of RRUFF.info.








Visiting Mineralogists & Rockhounds, please get in touch with us!

Trade Minerals
Members please feel free to bring minerals for trade to next MSA meeting.

The Rules of Etiquette
From Rockhound Record 1942

At the risk of seeming impertinent, exhibitors of minerals will provide good insurance to specimens if they will display, in a prominent place on their exhibit, the rules of etiquette:

1. Never pick up a piece of material unless it is handed to you by the owner.

2. Always handle carefully – as many specimens are valuable and cannot be replaced.

3. If you cannot see the specimen well, ask the owner to show it to you.

Membership Dues are Due!

Please pay at the next meeting or mail to Mineralogical Society of Arizona, 5533 E. Bell Road Suite 101, Scottsdale, AZ 85254.
Membership form & dues amounts are on website under MSA CLUB tab.

arizona, minerals, rock collecting clubs

New MSA Commemorative Pin

Designed by Chris Whitney-Smith, one of our members, in commemoration of MSA's 75th Anniversary in 2010. 

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Mineralogical Society of Arizona
5533 E. Bell Road
Suite 101
Scottsdale, AZ 85254

Member of the Rocky Mountain Federation of Mineralogical Societies
Member of the American Federation of Mineralogical Societies

Last Modified May 30, 2017 by Ron Ginn


Mineral logo photo courtesy of Jeff Scovil.

website by Rock Dog

©2008-2017 Mineralogical Society of Arizona