SOCGEMS Monthly Meetings are held the 3rd Wednesday of the month, at 7:15pm in the multipurpose room at the San Clemente Community Center, at the corner of Avenida del Mar and Calle Seville – next to the library. They are free and open to the public – we encourage you to participate!

Wednesday, 15 August 2018 at 7:15pm

The South Orange County Gem and Mineral Society is proud to welcome Guest Speaker Pete Goetz

pete goetz aug 2018

Pete Goetz, the President of the American Society, will present a slide show and show samples of opals from around the world at the monthly meeting of the South Orange County Gem and Mineral Society, on Wednesday, August 15, at 7:15 pm, San Clemente Community Center.

The public is invited to attend and learn more about this fascinating gem that was originally discovered in ancient times in Slovakia, and in the 19th century major deposits were found in Australia, which became the worlds largest source of opals. Today, Ethiopian opal production is competitive with Australian.

President, American Opal Society

Goetz has been president of the American Opal Society for over ten years. He graduated from San Diego State University after studying structural geomorphology or the processes and interactions that form landscapes. After a career in retail, he returned to his earth science passion and taught physical science, earth science and astronomy in the Anaheim School District for 22 years.

In his early years he actively collected rock and mineral samples, then focused his study on opals, turquoise and pearls. He enjoys researching, writing and speaking about opals as a way of sharing his knowledge and enthusiasm about the gem. Goetz will bring samples of opals from different sources including Australia and Peru.

The American Opal Society will host its 51st annual Opal Show in November with educational programs, demonstrations and vendors.

Speakers, Field Trips, and More!

Join our resident Rock Hounds on one of our monthly field trips! Check here and (probably more up to date) the SOCGEMS facebook page for upcoming rock hounding field trips!

Andy Koch
Excursions Director

Andy Koch Excursion Director
Andy on a field trip


South Orange County Gem and Mineral Society members pursue our hobby with responsibility.
Code of Ethics per The American Federation of Mineralogical Societies:

*   I will respect both private and public property and will do no collecting on privately owner land without permission from the owner.
*   I will keep informed on all laws, regulations and rules governing collecting on private lands and will observe them.
*   I will to the best of my ability, ascertain the boundary lines of property on which I plan to collect.
*   I will use no firearms or blasting materials in collecting areas.
*   I will cause no willful damage to property of any kind, such as fences, signs, building, etc.
*   I will leave all gates as found.
*   I will build fires only in designated or safe places and will be certain they are completely extinguished before leaving the area.
*   I will discard no burning materials – matches, cigarettes, etc.
*   I will fill all excavation holes, which may be dangerous to livestock.
*   I will practice conservation and undertake to utilize fully and well, the materials I have collected and will recycle my surplus for the pleasure and benefit of others.
*   I will support the Rockhound Project H.E.L.P. (Help Eliminate Litter Please) and will leave all collecting areas devoid of litter, regardless of how found.
*   I will cooperate with Field Trip Leaders and those in designated authority in all collecting areas.
*   I will report to my Club or Federation Officers, Bureau of Land Management or other proper authorities, any deposit of petrified wood or other material on public lands which should be protected for the enjoyment of future generations and for public educational and scientific purposes.
*   I will appreciate and protect our heritage of Natural Resources.
*   I will observe the ‘Golden Rule’, will use Good Outdoor Manners, and will at all times conduct myself in a manner which will add to the stature and Public Image of Rockhounds everywhere.

Save the Date!

Guests and visitors are welcome at all General Assembly Meetings.
MARK YOUR CALENDAR here’s what’s coming up …

AUGUST: Pete Goetz, President of the American Opal Society AND the San Clemente Art Association Arts and Crafts Fair

OCTOBER: Meg Berry, Gem Caring

arts and crafts fair 2018 san clemente
Very Large Free-form Carved Spessartite Garnet Meg Berry
split boulder opal
gem carving

past events and speakers - here’s what you’ve missed ...

Each month it’s something new and interesting – we enjoy renowned speakers, field trips, and the pleasure of the company of other gem and mineral enthusiasts!