Hobbyists and collectors flocked to Montreal’s Palais des congrès for the 61st annual Gem and Mineral Show show.
Between Oct. 28-30, the Palais des congrès was the host for the 61st annual Gem and Mineral Show.
This event was hosted by the Montreal Gem and Mineral club.
A brief history
Founding members Dick Britton and Ernest Windisch met at The McGill’s Redpath Museum in 1957.
The rock and mineral display caught the attention of both Britton and Windisch. They bonded over their shared interest in mineral collecting and brought up the idea of forming an official club.
The club was eventually created on Feb. 14, 1957 at Britton’s home, and it has been growing ever since.
The club’s active board of directors were present on-site for this year’s show and were very gracious to serve as our guide.
Constance Guignard, the vice president of the club, met up with The Concordian and explained how the show works and what her own role in the club is.
“I do volunteer work here, and we organize this show every year and use it as our fundraiser. We’re making a comeback after three years. We missed 2020, we missed 2021, so now we are coming back,” Guignard said.
Guignard made an interesting statement about all the different things one could do with gems and minerals that not a lot of people might know about.
“People can sculpt with the gems and minerals. At our club, you know, sometimes people will buy big rocks. We have saws so that people can cut big slabs and do whatever they want with them,” Guignard said.
Walking around the show, one could see all the dealers and vendors present on site. It was easy to get lost in the things to see, touch and learn about.
One interesting kiosk featured a coconut geode visitors could look at and have cracked on-site. The vendors guaranteed a hollow crystal centre.
Another interesting booth allowed visitors to get forever bracelets welded onto their wrists.
Our Community Editor went through with getting the forever bracelet, and spoke with Ash Charania, the owner of Rainbow Minerals.
“Forever bracelets is a trend that just hit Canada. In the past in the US, there have been lineups outside the boutiques for people that want to get this. It always takes a while to get to Canada but it’s finally here. It’s really new so no one really understands it yet,” Charania said.
The look of the bracelet is very dainty and wearers can barely feel it against their skin. The bracelets are custom-measured to the wrist, and visitors can choose between sterling silver, gold, and rose gold for the metal.
While most of the vendors on-site were experienced Gem and Mineral show-goers, this year’s edition was a first for some.
The owner of Petite Plume, Chloé Strum-Thibault, expressed her thoughts about her first time at the show.
“There are so many beautiful things to see that I feel that my eyes hurt. I already spent a lot of money and I know I am going to spend more,” Thibault joked.
Thibault takes inspiration for her jewelry creations from growing trees. Over the pandemic she was truly able to take her inspiration and turn it into her business.
The Gem and Mineral Show not only provided shoppers with gems and minerals from all over the world, but also gave them valuable insights to use towards their hobby.
Photographs by Kaitlynn Rodney/THE CONCORDIAN