About Julian Gray

Julian Gray is a geologist and executive director of the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals in Hillsboro, Oregon.

2016 Northwest Fossil Fest at the Rice Northwest Museum

2016 NW FOssil Fest PosterThe Northwest Fossil Fest sponsored by the North America Research Group (NARG) will take place at the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals on Saturday, August 13, 2016, from 10 AM to 5 PM.

The Theme for the 11th Annual Northwest Fossil Fest Fossil Teeth!

The event is free for families to learn about fossils, fossil collecting, preparation, identification, hands on demonstrations, and educational displays. There will also be two great talks.  The first will be Dr. John Bershaw of the Geology Department at Portland State University. He will be talking about how he uses fossil teeth to measure changes in chemistry that tell us something about how the past environment changed.  Victor Perez of the University of Florida will present a talk entitled “The Giant Megalodon and what we know about it from Teeth.”

Paleontologists will be on hand identify fossils and to show kids of all ages how to clean and prepare fossils.  There will be lots of hands on activities and this is a great event for families and fossil fans.  Attendance for the Fossil Fest includes free admission to the museum.

For more information and up-to-the-minute information see Northwest Fossil Fest.

There is still time to make your 2015 contribution to help the Rice NW Museum

Without you, the educational programs of the Rice NW Museum would not be possible. If you have not yet made your contributions to the Rice NW Museum this year, there is still time.

Cash contributions by mail

All cash contributions are 100% deductible.  You can mail your check to the museum and as long as the letter is post marked by December 31, 2015 you can deduct the donation for 2015.

Cash contributions online

Making your contribution is easy and safe to do online.  Just click our DONATE button on any page of our website.

In person

We love to see our supporters. Stop by the museum Gift Shop and make your contribution in person.  You  can also call and we can take your contribution over the phone.

IRA transfer

If you are at least 70-1/2 years old, you can make a charitable contribution to the Rice NW Museum by rolling over any amount of an IRA up to $100,000 tax free. Contact your investment adviser to ask how to do this.  This is retroactive to January 1, 2015 and is now permanent so consider doing this in 2016 as well.

Shop and contribute

If you shop at Fred Meyers, register your shopping card online through their Community Rewards Program. You can also shop through the Amazon Smile program. Doing either of these things cost you nothing extra and Fred Meyers and Amazon will contribute a portion of your purchase to the Rice NW Museum.

Membership

Become a member of the Rice NW Museum. You will get unlimited free admission to the museum and other museums in the Portland area (details will be announced next week). You will also get invited to special events at the museum that will be announced throughout 2016.  Already a members?  Renew, extend your membership, or upgrade your membership level.

Other ways to support us

There are many other ways to support us:

  • In-kind donations of rocks and minerals
  • Volunteer your time or services
  • Adopt-a-mineral
  • Sponsor an exhibit or event

2015 has been a great year of growth for the museum and 2016 looks even brighter. Please consider supporting us so that we can further our mission.

Veterans and Active Military receive FREE admission Veteran’s Day

To honor those who have or are serving in our nation’s military, the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks an Minerals will admit all veterans and active military free of charge on Veteran’s Day (Wednesday, November 11, 2015).  We thank all the brave men and women who serve our country to preserve the freedoms we enjoy.

The museum will be open to the public regular business hours, which are 1:00 to 5:00 PM.  Please remember to bring your military ID with you.

New York Times article calls attention to the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals

In a November 1, 2015 article in the New York Times, Quentin Hardy calls attention to five noteworthy museums around the United States.  The Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals is one of the museums highlighted in the article.  Other unique museums mentioned include the George Eastman Museum in Rochester, New York; the Philbrook Museum of Art in Tulsa, Oklahoma; the Ringling in Sarasota, Florida; the National Music Museum in Vermillion, South Dakota; and Walt’s Barn in Los Angeles, California.

Image of the New York Times article featuring the Rice NW MUseum

35th Annual Portland Regional Gem and Mineral Show in Hillsboro

The 2015 Portland Regional Gem Mineral Show Association is the 35th Annual event hosted by the Portland Regional Gem and Mineral Association October 9-11, 2015.

This is one of the largest rock, gem, and mineral shows in the Pacific Northwest, bringing together over 40 dealers and hundreds of exhibits. There will be demonstrations, lectures, workshops, educational programs, specimens, and more through out the entire weekend.

Admission is $5 per day for adults. Children 12 and under are free accompanied by an adult.

The event will be at the Washington County Fair Complex across from the Hillsboro Airport in Hillsboro, Oregon.

For more information, see the 2015 Portland Regional Gem Mineral Show Association announcements and news.

FREE admission during Smithsonian magazine’s annual Museum Day Live! September 26, 2015

Smithsonian-Magazine-Museum-Day-LiveThe Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals will open its doors free of charge on Saturday, September 26, 2015, as part of the Smithsonian magazine’s eleventh annual Museum Day Live! A nationwide event, Museum Day Live! offers free admission to visitors who present a Museum Day Live! ticket at a participating museum or cultural institution.

Get your Museum Day Live! ticket at Smithsonian.com/museumdaylive Each ticket will allow two guest to be admitted at no charge. One ticket is permitted per household, per email address. The Rice NW Museum is just one of 29 participating Oregon Museums.  For more information about Museum Day Live! 2015 and a list of other participating museums and cultural institutions, please visit: Smithsonian.com/museumdaylive/venues. And remember, the Rice Northwest Museum is open Saturdays from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM.

Faceting Classes 2015 – 2016 Schedule

Columbia-Willamette_Faceters_Guild_logo.

The Columbia Willamette Faceters Guild has released its schedule of classes for Beginning Gemstone Faceting at the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals for the 2015-2016 year. If you would like information on these and future classes, please contact the museum directly.

Participants and students are introduced to the theory and techniques of faceting gemstones. During the course, students will facet one or two gemstones with material and equipment provided by the Faceter’s Guild. Students gain sufficient knowledge to continue faceting on their own.

The classes are held in the Rice Northwest Museum’s Faceting Lab. The classes offer 20 hours of instruction across 4 or 5 classes (depending on session chosen) with 5 day  sessions taught from 1 to 5 PM and 4 day sessions from 12 PM until 5 PM. All equipment and materials are provided and students get to keep all stones completed in the class. Continue reading

Northwest Fossil Fest at the Rice Northwest Museum

2015 NW Fossil Fest FlierThe Northwest Fossil Fest sponsored by the North America Research Group (NARG) will take place at the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals on Saturday, August 8, 2015, from 10 AM to 5 PM.

The Theme for the 10th Annual Northwest Fossil Fest is The Pleistocene Epoch!

The event is free for families to learn about fossils, fossil collecting, preparation, identification, and display. The event includes lectures and demonstrations, including presentations by Mike Full and Dave Ellingson.  Mike will discuss some of his recent important discoveries from the Yamhill River Pleistocene Project and will have some of his Ice Age mammal bone discoveries on display.  Dave, a science teacher at Woodburn High School, will talk about major fossil discoveries from a bog deposit on grounds of the Woodburn Campus.  The Woodburn discoveries are part of the exciting Willamette Valley Pleistocene Project.  The lecture schedule will be published soon.

Paleontologists will be on hand identify fossils and to show kids of all ages how to clean and prepare fossils.  There will be lots of hands on activities and this is a great event for families and fossil fans.  Attendance for the Fossil Fest includes free admission to the museum.

For more information and up-to-the-minute information see Northwest Fossil Fest.

IMPORTANT ROAD CONSTRUCTION ALERT:  Please note that Helvetia Road will be closed August 8, 2015 because of construction.  Please follow our detour instructions and be alert for detour signs to guide you to the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals and the 2015 NW Fossil Fest.

2015 Summer Festival August 1-2

2015 Summer Fest FlierJoin us for the 12th Annual Summer Festival on Saturday and Sunday, August 1-2, 2015, 10AM to 5PM, at the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals. The weekend event includes vendors with minerals, fossils, gems, jewelry, gold panning, lapidary demonstrations, geode cutting, and a variety of activities for the young and old.

There will be local food available for purchase and live music, and the famous Flintstones Mobile will make an appearance. On Saturday only, from 11 AM to 1 PM, Mrs. Delicia Wistrand, Mrs Oregon America will be attending Summer Fest.

A silent auction, raffles, and door prizes will be held throughout the day.

Admission is $5 for adults, free for students 17 years old and under. A great experience for the whole family!

Bring your inner rock hound and join us for a fabulous Summer Festival.

Belong to a local school or rock club? Download and print and share the Rice NW Museum 2015 Summer Fest Flyer.

IMPORTANT ROAD CONSTRUCTION ALERT:  Please note that Helvetia Road will be closed August 8, 2015 because of construction.  Not to worry!  Just follow our detour instructions and be alert for detour signs to guide you to the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals and the 2015 Summer Festival.

Rice Museum wins Educational Award at 2015 Tucson Gem & Mineral Show

The national organization Friends of Mineralogy awarded the Rice Museum with a top honors for “Best Educational Exhibit by an Institution” at the 2015 Tucson Gem and Mineral Show® (TGMS) for our display, “Lead Minerals.”

FM President awards Rice Museum Edcuational Case Award

Friends of Mineralogy President Alex Schauss presents Rice Museum Curator Leslie Moclock with the award for Best Educational Exhibit by at Institution during the Tucson Gem and Mineral Show Banquet February 14, 2015. (Photo by Al Leibetrau)

The Tucson Gem and Mineral Show®, the World’s largest such show, draws an estimated 50,000 visitors each year. The show invites museums, private collectors, and clubs from around the world to create display cases with their best specimens related to the annual theme. The TGMS began as a club show housed in a local elementary school in 1954, and today is a premiere international event that gives visitors a chance to view specimens from some of the world’s finest mineral collections.

This year’s show theme was “Minerals of Western Europe.” Mineral science as we know it today has its roots in European scholarship and mining development, and this theme inspired many displays focused on historical collections and famous European localities.

The Rice Museum display combined superb mineral specimens from well-known localities with mineral science education. The display theme, minerals containing the element lead, was chosen to demonstrate how useful and beautiful lead minerals can be. The vibrant green pyromorphite, yellow mimetite, and lustrous red wulfenite on display contrast with the popular notion of lead as nothing but a dull metal. The display also discussed how the crystal structures in some lead minerals contribute to their crystal shapes, and the importance of lead ores and mining in ancient history.

Rice Museum Tucson Educational Case

Rice Museum exhibit case at the 2015 Tucson Gem & Mineral Show featuring lead minerals.

Tying in with the show theme, European specimens in the display included a green pyromorphite plate from Les Farges Mine, France (center); green and brown pyromorphite from Friedrichssegen Mine, Germany; green pyromorphite from Chaillac Mine, France; vitreous white anglesite from Monteponi Mine, Italy; and one of the world’s largest phosgenite crystals, also from Monteponi Mine, Italy.

Education is at the heart of all that we do at the Rice Museum, and we are thrilled to be recognized for our efforts at the 2015 TGMS.