SDMG 81st Annual Banquet 2015

Birthday Banquet Review


by Anne Schafer


Sixty-two SDMG members and guests attended the 81st Birthday Banquet, held at the 94th Aero Squadron on Saturday, March 14, 2015.  It was a beautiful, sunny day with almost record-breaking warmth at 93°F.  Banquet Chairlady Charlene Churilla had done an excellent job with the floral centerpieces, the programs, the tasty menu and arranging for the speaker.  After an introduction and invocation by Charlene, everyone proceeded to the fully-loaded buffet and dessert tables.  I know from personal experience that the salmon teriyaki, garlic mashed potatoes and lasagna were wonderful, as was the lemon meringue pie.  The chocolate cheesecake disappeared so quickly, it must have been top-flight, as well!

After luncheon, past presidents, current instructors and other dignitaries were introduced, to applause.  Jim Parrish presented a trophy to Immediate Past President Garry Cannon, along with thanks for his service.  Jim also presented a plaque honoring our "Hostess with the Most-est" to Banquet Chairlady Charlene ChurillaAnne Schafer presented a trophy to just-retired Membership Secretary Sally Parrish, for twelve years of excellent and dedicated service.

Roger Merk gave an outstanding presentation on Wyoming Jade, complete with photos of the remote locales where jade has been collected for decades and of the beautiful specimens that he owns, or has owned.  He also recounted, among other anecdotes, a story about the travails of a local sheepherder who found an 800 lb. jade boulder alongside a stream, loaded it on his truck, and couldn't drive back onto the road.  Roger kindly answered all questions, about jade and not-jade, prices, collecting and so on.  He finished to a strong round of applause from all attendees.

The 2015 Carmelita and Bern Swarts Scholarship recipient is Senior Amanda Linn, in the Geology Department, with a 3.78GPA.  The William Tirk Scholarship is Graduate Student Kaiya Rainbolt, for Metal Smithing/Art, with a 3.85 GPA.  Amanda could not attend the Banquet, so her scholarship will be presented at the next Mineral Division meeting on Friday, April 17.

Simon King and Gladys Walker handled both the general and the special door prize drawing, with good humor.  Some results are given below.

Thanks to all who attended, and to Banquet Hostess Charlene for another fun event.

Special Door Prize Winners!

If you attended any of the General or Mineral Division meetings during the past year and filled out a special green door prize ticket, you were in the running to win one (or more) of the special door prizes on display at the Banquet.  Thank you, everyone, for your donations of these great door prizes!  Here are the winners:

  • Donor
  • Faceted gem or cabochon
  • Winner
  • Mike Harlow
    Anne Schafer
    Betty Borden
    Betty Borden
  • 1.71 ct. Aquamarine
    California rhodonite cab
    pair of 0.90 marquise-cut Topazes
    Brazilian carnelian agate cabochon
    0.67 ct. cushion-cut Montana sapphire
    pair of 1.05 ct. round brilliant Citrines
    0.65 ct. brilliant cut Oregon Sunstone
  • Al Hochrein
    Carl Shugart
    Carl Shugart, again!
    Al Hochrein, again!
    Heather Hochrein
    John Kruzel
    Jim Parrish






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