A warm Spring Break invitation to hunt for real diamonds
By Margi Jenks
As I write this, the snow that dusted the Crater of Diamonds State Park recently has almost completely melted. Other places in Arkansas and the eastern United States have had tough winters, so all of us are looking forward to warmer March temperatures and Spring Break. At the diamond mine we spend lots of time planning for our March and April, Spring Break visitors. In addition to our regular daily demonstrations and programs, we have planned special programs for the Fridays and Saturdays in March.
Each March Saturday we have scheduled one of our most popular programs—Visit with an Expert Diamond Miner. This hour long program at 2:00 PM in our visitor center theater showcases the experiences of our “regular” diamond miners. They share their diamond mining stories, the diamonds that they have found, and the reasons that they come back time after time to search for diamonds. One of the speakers is a second generation diamond searcher. He came as a child with his parents when they visited the mine several times each year. Now, he and his wife have moved to the Little Rock area, and come down fairly frequently to look for those elusive gems. All of these programs are free and open to the public.
Also each Friday and Saturday night in March we will be giving evening programs at our park amphitheater, next to the campground. We are offering a variety of programs: spooky southern style campfire stories, making pine cone bird feeders, our early 1900’s mining history, diamond finding hints and tips, a campfire sing-a-long, and a reenactment of the investment pitch by an early 1900’s diamond prospector. We do not charge for these programs and anyone, not just our campground visitors, can attend.
All of our demonstration and event times are listed in several places. Look on the Arkansas State Park or our Crater of Diamonds State Park website for the event calendar or calendar of events. We also post our events on the park bulletin boards as both a program list and as flyers for the special and evening events. Finally, each day’s events are listed on the program board next to the tool rental window in the lower level of the Diamond Discovery Center.
While you are on the general state park website events calendar, look for the Spring Break events scheduled at all the southwest Arkansas state parks. Historic Washington State Park, only 35 miles southwest of the diamond mine, will be holding their annual Jonquil Festival on March 14th-16th. Craftspeople and entertainers will celebrate the coming of spring. From roughing it at Cossatot River State Park, 70 miles northwest, to enjoying all the luxuries at DeGray Lake Resort State Park, 55 miles northeast, all Arkansas state parks near the Crater of Diamonds have fun and exciting Spring Break special events scheduled for every member of your family.
Presently, our diamond field is in prime condition for hunting diamonds. The last week in January our maintenance department took advantage of the dry weather to plow almost the entire field. Then, over the first four days of February over 4” of rain, ice pellets and snow fell on it. That combination--turning over and then washing off the search field dirt--is the best way to reveal and concentrate the diamonds.
So, make memories with a special Spring Break trip to the Crater of Diamonds State Park. We are looking forward to extending our best southern welcome to you and your family.
Search area last plowed: Field is recently plowed; Most recent significant rainstorms: over 4” total, February 1-4, 2014
Total diamonds found in 2014: 19
Diamonds registered for February 2-February 8, 2014 (100 points = 1 carat):
February 2 to 5 – No diamonds were registered
February 6 – Adam Hardin, Norton, OH, 4 pt. white
February 7 and 8 – No diamonds were registered