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Waterford Township, MI

Livingston Gem and Mineral Society Hold Rock Swap in Waterford Saturday, May 22nd

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Tracy Stengel
Tracy Stengel
 25 days ago
Photo via Michigan Rocks and Minerals FaceBook

Attention all rockhounds and lovers of lapidary arts! The Livingston Gem and Mineral Society is hosting its 2021 Rock Swap Saturday, May 22, 2021 from 9 AM — 5 PM at Christ Lutheran Church located at 5987 Williams Lake Road in Waterford, Michigan

Cinda Dawson, Vice President of LGMS said, “There will be — literally — a ton of rough rock for sale.” At least 15 vendors will be showcasing cabochons, crystals, fossils, gems, jewelry, and slabs. Many of the rocks come from all over the United States and the world. There will also be Michigan-sourced treasures such as:

Petoskey Stone
Photo courtesy of author.

The Petoskey stone is Michigan’s state stone, yet it is actually a fossil from a type of coral named hexagonaria percarinata. Over 350 million years ago, before there were dinosaurs, Michigan was near the equator and covered in saltwater. There, the coral thrived in tropical reefs. Due to the earth’s plates shifting, Michigan was pushed north and above sea level.

The most popular place to find Petoskey stones is along lake Michigan near the town of Petoskey, but glaciers spread the fossils from Charlevoix to Alpena. You don’t have to be on a beach to hunt for them. They are found in fields and roadsides throughout the area. Petoskey stones are easy to spot when they are wet, and their distinctive six-sided pattern stands out. When dry, they look like a plain grey piece of limestone. Once polished, the Petoskey is one of Michigan’s most beautiful “gifts from the sea.”

Charlevoix aka Favosite
Photo courtesy of author.

Like the Petoskey stone, Charlevoix stones are fossils originating from coral from the Devonian Age. They are often referred to as “cousin to the Petoskey stone.” Their pattern resembles a honeycomb and are gorgeous when polished.

Leland Blue
Image courtesy of author.

Leland Blue stone is actually slag. From 1870 to 1885, Leland Lake Superior Iron Company turned Leland, Michigan into an industrial town. During the smelting process, raw ore is heated, and the iron ore is separated from impurities. Sadly, the smelting industry failed due to an inadequate harbor in Leland and high overhead costs. When the industry died, the impurities were dumped into the harbor. The slag from Leland varies from blue to purple or grey to green. Today artisans use it to create jewelry, making it a wearable piece of Michigan history.

Image via

Fordite is ofForditepanies no longer hand spray vehicles, chunks of those historic paint layers are being made into jewelry. Fordite comes in a kaleidoscope of colors and makes eye-popping, one-of-a-kind jewelry.

Pudding Stones
Imaga via Wiki Commons

The Michigan pudding stone is a type of sedimentary rock known as a conglomerate. It is white and looks like it was rolled over a bunch of different colored rocks, including red jasper. It resembles pudding with raisins and cranberries. The rocks come in all sizes and many people love collecting them because they are so unusual looking. They can be transformed into jewelry, knife handles, and garden ornaments.

This Weekend, Waterford Rocks!

The Livingston County Gem and Mineral Society’s Rock Swap has something for everyone and is going to be fun for the whole family. The sale will take place rain or shine. See you in Waterford!