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Popular Rock & Mineral Program Coming This Weekend

The York County Department of Parks and Recreation will present the popular Rock and Mineral Weekend at Nixon County Park on September 29 and 30. Hours will be 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Saturday and noon until 4 p.m. on Sunday.

There will be a number of activities and programs for the entire family. There is a $2 admission fee per person, which is good for the entire weekend. Additional costs may apply for participations in certain programs, though most are free.

The always-popular fossil pit will return, giving participants the opportunity to break their own fossils and take specimens home. These petrified wood and fern fossils are from the world-famous St. Clair, Schuylkill County site. Participants can bring a hammer, goggles and collecting bag, but the Parks will furnish them if needed.

Several rock, gem and fossils dealers will be setup inside the Nature Center.

Featured will be the Take the Time Line Walk, where participants can appreciate the Earth’s age and what has occurred along the way. The walk is laid out to a scale.

Also, going from the large crystals to very small specimens, Larry Eisenberger of Hanover will be present to show everyone spectacular crystals under a microscope.

There will be a drawing board where children can draw their favorite mineral or fossil. A sand pit will be available to the youngsters to search for gemstones.

Below are the special programs scheduled for the weekend. All programs are free unless otherwise noted:


Saturday, September 29th

10:45 a.m.: "Earthquakes and Volcanoes" with geologist Jeri Jones. Learn the hows and where earthquakes are and volcanoes occur. Chances are good that “earthquakes” will occur during this program and all participants will have a chance to erupt volcanoes.

11:45 a.m.: "Dinosaurs and other Fossils" with geologist Jeri Jones. See fossils of dinosaurs and other cool fossils, some of which are from Pennsylvania. You will walk up the geologic time scale with fossil examples and participate in several activities.

12:30 p.m.: "Fox Story Time: Prospecting for Gold" with Parks volunteer Brenda Miller. She reads a story about a young man who lives his dream on becoming a gold prospector. For children ages 4-7.

1:30 p.m.: "Let’s Go Mining" with mining historian Johnny Johnsson. This will be a fun and educational program held in one of the mine shafts at Raab County Park. Learn what tools were used in mining and the difficulty of the work. All Participants must bring a flashlight to access the shaft. $5 fee per person, register by calling Nixon Park.

3:30 p.m.: "Fun with Minerals" with geologist Jeri Jones. Take a look at minerals using hands-on activities and understand their importance and what makes them fun to collect. Program is free and is for ages 5 and up.

Sunday, September 30th

12:30 p.m.: "Fox Story Time: Prospecting for Gold" with Parks volunteer Sandy Decker. She reads a story about a young man who lives his dream on becoming a gold prospector. For children ages 4-7.

1:15 p.m.: "So, you want to be a Geologist" with geologist Jeri Jones. Find out how a geologist identifies rocks and minerals. Find out how the age of a fossil is determined. Learn where volcanoes and earthquakes have occurred in the area. Using hands-on activities and a PowerPoint program, participants will become “Junior Geologists.” For ages 8 and older.

2:45 p.m.: "Earthquakes and Volcanoes" with geologist Jeri Jones. Learn how, and where, earthquakes and volcanoes occur. Chances are good that “earthquakes” will occur during this program and all participants will have a chance to erupt volcanoes.

For more information on this weekend, contact the Nixon County Parks Nixon Center at (717) 428-1961.

For information on this and other programs, go to www.yorkcountyparks.org.

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Media Contact: Jeri Jones, JLJones@yorkcountypa.gov

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