2004 FIELD COLLECTOR'S AWARD WINNER
To celebrate the 5th year anniversary of the Field Collector’s Award, trophys were given to the past winner’s.And a trophy will be given to future winners of the Field Collector’s and Sponsor’s award. This was prompted by the
anguish expressed from past winners when they had to give up the award shovel.About the Award shovel plaque. The plaque acknowledges that year’s winner. It is a personalized area that the winner can express what they want on it. I will put just about anything on it you want (I don’t encourage modesty).
Ernie Schlichter of Sudbury, Ma, won this year’s Field Collectors award. Ernie took possession of the Collector’s trophy shovel for his 2nd time and it will include his 2nd personalized plaque. He also won the $200.00 cash prize.
Chris Wong of Millbury Ma. won the Sponsor’s award.
This year’s competition had five contestants. They shared their super passionate stories and their prized mineral specimens from their collecting adventures. This years presentations as well as all previous years presentations emphasize how interesting and entertaining rock-hounds can be.
The five rock-hounds were:
Dana M.Jewell of Melrose MA. Quartz
Ernie Schlichter of Sudbury, Ma.
Pink Fluorite and Smoky Quartz, (Field Collectors Winner)
Chris Wong of Millbury Ma. Herkimer Diamond, (sponsor winner)
Don Swenson, Merrimack NH. Staurolite Cross
Brad Jackson of Keene. NH. Stilbite
Ernie becomes the first 2-time winner and his 2nd plaque on the shovel clearly illustrates this achievement. Ernie’s display of pink fluorite specimens, and gem stones accompanied by smoky quartz specimens were a treat in themselves. Ernie starts us off by showing us the alpine town of Chamonix, France. From there we join the master collector on a trip that definitely had a few surprises and kept them all on their toes. He hooked up with some French collecting guides… and proceeded by helicopter to a collecting site high in the Alps. But the helicopter did not land… he had to jump out of the helicopter onto a very small ledge on the side of the mountain. From their landing site, they hiked (mountain climbed) to the collecting area. The area was a small work site on the side of the mountain with 1000 ft cliff drop offs. Ernie’s 1st job was to get rid of a 3ft block of ice (in July) that was blocking the pocket. They worked the pocket for about 4 hours and then they had to pack up to get back to the helicopter pick up sight. Ernie’s had some major weight concerns anticipating the upcoming leap to the helicopter adventure which made him want to keep his pack as light as possible. They made there way to the helicopter pick up site but the helicopter was late (3 hr’s late). During that time Ernie asked (not in a concerned manner) to his French collecting pals what would happen if the helicopter couldn’t make the pick up. It went something like this. French collecting pal: “we will climb down.” Ernie: “how long will it take me. “ French collecting pal: “I was referring to myself and my colleagues, you are not able or capable to climb down.” Well you guessed it the helicopter showed up just before dark and Ernie lost some of his youth while jumping off the ledge onto the hovering helicopter.
Sponsors Trophy Chris Wong of Millbury Ma. won the Sponsors award.
He displayed his first “big” self- collected specimen, a Herkimer Diamond. His story recounting this first major mineral specimen find was one we all could relate to. The excitement of opening that crystal pocket and the life long pursuit, ( obsession ) it started, made a great entertaining story.
About the event.
The Field Collectors Award is held annually during the October Sunapee Gem & Mineral Show in Sunapee New Hampshire. It is opened to anyone that wants to enter. Just present a self-collected specimen with a story (no time limitation on when it was collected). Just register at the booth of Toveco Specimen Mining at the Sunapee Gem & Mineral Show. There is also a Judges and contestant social get together with a desert and beverage buffet. First prizes is $200.00 cash prize with there personalized name plaque placed on the award shovel and Field Collectors Award Trophy. 2nd prize-The sponsor’s Trophy.