Spring Break at the diamond mine

 

By Margi Jenks

March is always a busy month with the school children in Arkansas and the surrounding states having Spring Break holidays.  This year was much the same and we appreciate the fact that so many people decided to spend their holiday time at the diamond mine.  Many of the days were beautiful and warm, and all of the spring flowers, dogwoods, and red bud trees have been in bloom. We also had several days with lots of rain.  After days like that our visitors often find larger diamonds right on the surface.  This month we had four over one carat diamonds found by people searching the surface.

This winter was warm, but we had lots of rain.  So, we haven’t been able to plow the entire field since October.  When it rained 2 ½ inches on the 21st, our Spring Break visitors had lots of adventures in the mud, and we have been finding lost shoes ever since.  With the recent dry weather our maintenance department took advantage and plowed for three days last week.  With the exception of some low areas, and an area down in the southeast corner, the rest of the field has now been plowed.  While they were doing that they used the plow to reconfigure a couple of areas where water has had a tendency to collect.  We believe that this work will help the field drain more easily, and therefore provide easier walking conditions for our visitors.
 

 Visitors look through freshly turned dirt
 
Our 40th anniversary special programs were well attended.  Visitors especially liked our new regular program called “Visit with an Expert Diamond Miner”.  Beth Gilbertson, finder of the 8.66 carat Illusion Diamond last April, was the first speaker on the 17th.  On the 24th long time diamond miner Shirley Strawn talked about her life in a diamond mining family and the Strawn-Wagner diamond, which is displayed in the Crater visitor center.  So, look for more of these programs in the coming months.
 

 Beth Gilbertson helps visitors to see the diamond in the dirt
 

We hope that the warm weather continues, because April and May are always good times to visit the diamond mine.  However, right now we are looking forward to the next big rain storm, because we need a good rain after the field has been plowed to set the diamond field up for visitors to find more pretty Crater diamonds.

Search area last plowed:  March 29, 2012; Most recent heavy rain:  March 21, 2012

Total diamonds found in 2012: 114

Diamonds registered for March 18–March 31, 2012 (100 points = 1 carat): 

March 23 – Al &Ella Bell, Murfreesboro, AR, 26 pt. white, 4 pt. white, 16 pt. white; Bailey Dickerson & Zakiya Campbell, Bellafontaine, OH, 24 pt. yellow;

March 24 – Jayce Rylee, Jasper, AR, 6 pt. white; Quinn Rylee, Jasper, AR, 8 pt. white; John Bonner, Winnboro, LA, 4 pt. white; Connor Cooper, Russellville, AR, 3 pt. white

March 25  – James and Patty Lorentz, Holley, NY, 12 pt. white; David Anderson, Murfreesboro, AR, 54 pt. brown; Felez Saenz, Liberty City, TX, 4 pt. white

March 26 – Joy L. Gibson, Houston, TX, 25 pt. brown, 30 pt. brown

March 27 – Alberta Fling, 45 pt. white

March 28 – Richard Longtin, Polk City, FL, 1.12 carat brown

March 31 – Brooke and Mike Klawitter, Berlin, WI, 3 pt. yellow

Crater of Diamonds Home Page
209 State Park Road
Murfreesboro, AR 71958
Email: craterofdiamonds@arkansas.com
Phone: (870) 285-3113

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