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, 17 October 2018 at 7:15pm

The South Orange County Gem and Mineral Society is proud to welcome Guest Speaker Meg Berry

meg berry socgems

Meetings of SOCGEMS are held the third Wednesday of the month, 7:15 pm in the San Clemente Community Center, 100 N. Calle Seville, San Clemente (next door to the library). Guests are welcome at no charge. Speaker presentation is preceded by hospitality and refreshments, a raffle and brief business meeting. SOCGEMS Members are invited to field trips, special auctions, classes in lapidary, Junior Rock hound activities and more.

Meg Berry with poster of her cut tanzanites. Photo by Robert Weldon


On October 17, Master Faceter and Award Winning Gem Carver, Meg Berry will explain the process of taking a raw stone and turning it into a beautiful gemstone through the art of faceting, and gem carving.

Berry moved to CA from Michigan in 1974, and quickly discovered a passion for cutting gemstones. In 1977, she graduated with a “Master Faceter,” certificate and apprenticed for three years to Bob Livingstone and worked in the downtown Los Angeles jewelry district as a colored stone cutter. She moved to San Diego County in 1980, and in 1989 began working full time for Pala International in Fallbrook, which owned the Himalaya tourmaline mine, among others, as well as The Collector Fine Jewelry stores.

Needing more variety in her work, Berry began exploring gemstone carving and eventually phased out of Pala to concentrate on her own original work. Currently she facets exclusively for a few select clients and spends the majority of her time carving designs from tourmaline, garnet, topaz, aquamarine and a wide variety of other colored gems.

Berry has won a total of nine American Gem Trade Association (AGTA) Cutting Edge/Spectrum competition awards. Seven were awarded for her faceting and in 2016-17, two for her gemstone carvings.

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 …

NOVEMBER: Debi McKee, Crystal Energy
DECEMBER: Member Holiday Party!
JANUARY: Renee Newman, 21st Century Jade
FEBRUARY: Patrick Keegan, Lapis Lazuli
MARCH: Dennis Carey, Quartz

tangerine quartz
roe quartz
crystal quartz

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!