Last Minute Ideas

Every Club should have a plan for an emergency when a speaker has to cancel. Some “last minute” programs can be prepared in advance - ready for use when needed.

Always set time limits before any presentation begins, so it will not run too long.

1. Locate your Club’s copy of “So You Think You Know All The Answers” (a booklet of puzzles and games collected from Club Newsletters over many years. - 2002 MWF publication) Duplicate some of the puzzles for members to work on. *** You can purchase your own copy of this booklet. It is listed on the MWF Director of Supplies page.

2. “How I became a Rockhound” or “What I hope to Learn”. Members (and visitors) tell how they became interested in the hobby or why they are interested in. Perhaps a couple of Club officers could go first to “break the ice”. Be sure to set time limits – perhaps 3 minutes each – so everyone can have a turn. Try to have Q & A at the end, if time permits.

3. Call several members and ask if they will bring one or two of their favorite specimens, pieces of jewelry, cabs, artifacts, etc. - something they would like to tell fellow members about. This is also a way to introduce other members to various aspects of the hobby. If possible choose quiet members – not only the most knowledgeable. You could use this as a mini program at as regular feature. That way, over time, most members can present a special “Show and Tell”. *** Always set time limits.

4. If you have a Club Library, instead of a program, plan time for members to explore the collection. New books can be highlighted and old favorites remembered. Ask members to suggest books that could be added based on what they have seen elsewhere. Decide how to finance them if library does not have an approved budget. If there is no Club Library -- contact several members asking them to bring books, magazines, etc. for everyone to explore. Also, see if you can “borrow” books that may be of interest from your local library. Members can read aloud or summarize articles, topics or techniques they find. As always, limit time carefully.

5. “Tools of the Trade”. Ask several members to bring a tool used for jewelry, micromounting, faceting, caving or other technique and describe how that tool is used. This is a good springboard for discussion of “tips & tricks of the trade”.

6. “My other Hobby”. Invite several Club members who pursue other pastimes to make a brief presentation about another hobby. Set time limits in advance. Set a similar program in future if others want to ‘show & tell’. Such a program helps to develop camaraderie among Club members who may find they have other interests in common.

7. If there is a mine or quarry in your area, inquire if someone can tell your Club about the operation and production, history and uses of the materials. Some quarries have access to a film or video about their product.

8. Contact a local jewelry store. Some have a Gemologist who can make a presentation about a topic such as gold, diamonds, colored stones (in general) or specific gemstones, birthstones etc.

9. Check with a local rock shop owner who may be able to tell your group about new equipment, new gem materials, shop safety, etc.