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, 20 February 2019 at 7:15pm

The South Orange County Gem and Mineral Society is proud to welcome Guest Speaker Patrick Keegan

patrick keegan

Patrick Keegan

Patrick Keegan has been prospecting for the semi-precious stone since he was 12 years. His first discovery of the blue rock was a “eureka” moment for him. He’s been prospecting for it ever since. He has a video, “The Prospector,” on YouTube, of prospecting for lapis on Mt. Baldy. To get to the mine, he has to climb 2500 feet in one mile, through poison oak, wild brambles of blackberries, over fallen logs, and up rock-covered steep slopes. But for him, the experience is almost “religious.” “You search all your life to find something you are good at,” he explains, and for him the search is an important part of his personal journey.

As a lapidary artist, Keegan feels the rough rock is “art itself. The stone is already there in the rock, and I’m just exposing it, maximizing the potential it has.” He will bring samples of his finds and creations to the meeting.

Patrick Keegan is an event coordinator, sound engineer, and ex-touring music technician who now is a prospector and lapidary/silversmith artist.
He resides in Upland, CA.

lapis keegan feb 2019 socgems

Lapis Lazuli prospector and lapidary/jewelry artist, Patrick Keegan is the guest speaker at the monthly South Orange County Gem and Mineral Society meeting, 7:15 pm, Wednesday, February 20, at the San Clemente Community Center.

Lapis is one of the oldest mined stones and has been found in ancient burial sites from the 3rd century, BC. It was a prized stone in Egypt and favored by the pharaohs for its deep blue color.

Patrick will be offering a macro-outlook on the history of Lapis Lazuli, as well as personal experiences prospecting a California deposit near Mt Baldy.

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.

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 …

FEBRUARY: Patrick Keegan, Lapis Lazuli
MARCH: Dennis Carey, Quartz
APRIL: Members Night… What Rocks You?
MAY: Annual Silent Auction and Sale
JUNE: Ron Schmidtling, Dinosaurs

silent auction
crystal quartz
the socgems gang

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!