2009 Meeting Minutes

Please feel free to contact us with any questions or additions... Thank you!


 November 1st, 2009:

Dave's Falling Rocks Collection
Meeting was called to order at 3:00 p.m.

  • MAG Duties:
    Anita requested assistance with maintaining the MAG duties she covers as president (Taking minutes, finding speakers, finding places to meet, creating agendas, etc.) We discussed spreading the responsibilities to other active members.

  • Calendar Proposal:
    Anita volunteered to create a "Calendar of Events" listing things we're involved in on a yearly basis: Norcross Show in December, Astronomy Day at Tellus, etc. We may also want to consider some of the events GMS participates in: Mother's Day gem show in May, GSTA in Savannah/Jekyl Island, Stone Mountain rock day, Earth Day at Zoo Atlanta, Olympic Park in downtown Atlanta, Shade Tree Festival in Grant Park, etc.

  • Volunteers:
    Anita asked for volunteers to help her staff the MAG booth at the North Atlanta Trade Center in December.

  • Membership Outreach:
    Dave Gheesling agreed to take on "Member Outreach" and see how we could get more people to attend our meetings, with Carl's help and input. Carl suggested we start listing MAG events in the GMS newsletter and e-blasts.

  • Treasury report:
    Wayne reported our current balances and will remain as treasurer for MAG.

  • New VP position:
    Sean is doing a great job as our WebMaster. He asked that we all look over our website and send any corrections, ideas, etc. to him. Sean agreed to serve as the unofficial VP (we're currently defining his duties as VP). He will continue to create certificates and frame them for our members and guest speakers, provide name badges, etc.

  • Secretary position available:
    Anita will continue to take meeting minutes and create the calendar until someone else volunteers.

  • Newsletter:
    We briefly talked about creating a newsletter to go out between formal MAG meetings (3 times a year) to keep the enthusiasm going. Along with meteorite-related articles, we could do a write-up of the upcoming speaker, have cartoons, puzzles, recap of past events/mtgs. feature a member with their picture and describe their interests, etc. Have door prizes and highlight the winner with a picture and a "see what you missed at the meeting" theme.

  • Events Schedule:
    We agreed to go back to our original meeting scheudle: Jan, Apr, Jul, Oct. An occasional field trip or other event can be added in as needed.

  • Show/Tell/Trade:
    At the conclusion of the meeting, BUYING, TRADING AND VISITING with Dave Gheesling's Falling Rocks collection commenced.

  • Subsequent discussion notes... :
    On Nov 23rd, at Anita's house, Carl, Dave, Sean and Anita reviewed the new positions formed at the Nov. 1st meeting.

    • Meetings:
      We're going to have four "Formal Meetings" in 2010, scheduled in the second Sunday of January, April, July and October. First meeting is scheduled for January 10, 2010, at Dave's offices in Marietta. For the April, July and October meetings, a holiday audit needs to take place before we run with the second Sundays of those months. We will run with this schedule in the first newsletter and reaffirm the schedule at the January meeting, and we will try to secure locations as well (Tellus should be one, etc).
    • Outreach:
      We are currently leaving educational outreach for now with those members who already do this in schools. As for public Outreach, Carl suggests that a MAG article (or better, series of articles) for GMS and other rock club newsletters might be a good idea for free publicity. Each article could be sent to several clubs. Also, we may be able to book meeting space in a public library, Tellus, Fernbank or other venues which might allow for more people? With more space, we might want to work on getting free meeting notices listed in various publications. One place could be the same rock club newsletters where we plan to write articles.
    • Newsletter:
      We plan to distribute these in printed form via a mailing to all members prior to the then-forthcoming meeting, and they will include highlights of the upcoming meeting's agenda. Other ideas included: a four-page "magazine" appearance (I might suggest a black background with white or off-white font and images overlaid directly onto the black so we don't get a "choppy" look that club newsletters tend to have), a current event or breakthrough ("Meteoritenow?"), a Featured Member section, a cartoon from Jerry, a photo of the winner of the last door prize (with the door prize... might ask Noah to take one of himself from the last one I recall from 2009?), a puzzle, an image from Tom Bopp, etc.
    • Website:
      Sean asked that we audit the website and come back with comments. We can investigate using a blog page with the ability to add/post comments. This could potentially fill in that blank as far as a MAG-only maining "list," so to speak. Sean will check with Wayne about potentially adding a PayPal feature to our site for membership fees.
    • Membership:
      Dave Gheesling will focus on our membership drive, and will work with Carl. Phase One: reinvigorating the existing membership. Phase Two: growing the membership. The key here will be to announce meetings with agendas well in advance of meetings, be sure that the agenda has value in it, and then individually market the meeting to members to be sure that we're driving attendance.

Anita D. Westlake,
MAG President


 August 15th, 2009:

Cartersville, GA
Tellus Museum
Event began at 9:00 a.m. with registration and refreshments

Tellus Museum
The Annual Mineral Symposium
  • Meteorites:
    The Annual Mineral Symposium - Meteorites was held at the Tellus Museum in Cartersville, in conjunction with the Southeast Gem and Mineral Show at the Holiday inn adjacent to Tellus.

    The symposium started at 10am with 3 great speakers:
    • Robert Ward, meteorite hunter
    • Scott Harris, impact structures expert
    • and our own Dave Gheesling with his "Meteorite 101" talk.

    Thanks to those who attended! It was a great symposium, and very well received.

Anita D. Westlake,
MAG President


 July 26th, 2009:

McDonough, GA
David Hardy's Collection
Meeting was called to order at 2:00 p.m.

6.26.09 MAG Meeting picture
Happy 2nd birthday MAG!
  • David Hardy collection:
    Visit w/David Hardy and his collection. [Awesome! Makes Anita's look like construction debris.]

  • Meeting Frequency:
    Still meet 6 times a year but not all of them should be formal w/an agenda, etc. Have some just for fun!

  • Vote for new President:
    No nominations from the floor. Dave Gheesling suggested Anita serve a second 2-year term. Motion carried, Hal P. started to object, but thought better of it.

  • Memberships:
    We have a new Student Membership category: $10 a year w/student ID.

  • Treasurer's Report:
    Wayne Dodd reports no additional activity since the last MAG meeting.

  • Website:
    Sean reports that We can pursue creating a mail listserv for the group if we register another domain name. Sean suggested www.maofga.org and will work on setting up the domain and the Linux mail list application. He also requested that any members with meteorite related photos send them in for the gallery. If you have written any articles, we can post them on the website as well.

  • Meteorite Symposium:
    Julian Gray talked about the upcoming symposium in conjunction with the Marty Zinn Gem and Mineral Show in Cartersville. The symposium will be August 15th at Tellus. Arrive at 9am. Symposium starts at 10am with 3 great speakers: Robert Ward, meteorite hunter, Scott Harris, crater expert and our own Dave Gheesling with his "Meteorite 101" talk. Don't miss it! Log on to the Tellus website for info. on how to register.

  • General news:
    There's a new book just out called "The Fallen Sky: An Intimate History of Shooting Stars". It's looks like a good one. You can get it 1/2 price from Strand Bookstore in NY (via the internet).

  • Auction:
    Dave Gheesling donated some very fine material for the auction as always. This time he brought a Lunar meteorite to tempt us. It sold for a goodly sum, but still not as much as it was worth. There's a special place for Dave in the Asteroid Belt! (Sorry to single you out Dave, but "facts is facts.") Others brought goodies including a Pultusk commemorative coin, a nickel test kit, a first day issue stamped envelope of the 20th anniversary of the moon landing, a Sikhote-Alin meteorite in a Riker Mount, a chondrulicious NWA 869 in a Riker Mount, and some high-energy drinks. Forgive me if I have forgotten your donation. The auction produced income for MAG of $335.00!! Thanks to all of the donors. Please help us continue this success at our next meeting!

  • Show/Tell/Trade:
    At the conclusion of the meeting, BUYING, TRADING AND VISITING commenced.

  • Carrot Cake and General Frivolity Followed...

Anita D. Westlake,
MAG President


 May 2nd, 2009:

Cartersville, GA
Tellus Museum meeting room #2
Meeting was called to order at 10:00 a.m.

Anita Westlake talking to kids about meteorites
  • National Astronomy Day:
    At the invitation of Tellus, MAG members were invited to participate in National Astronomy Day. Those attending were treated to free admission to the museum that day.

    MAG members who attended and gave their time to talk to the public were: Dave Gheesling, Barry Gheesling, Hal Povenmire, Sean Murrary, John Iacullo, Richard Graveline, John Krebs and son, Jerry Armstrong and Judy, Anita Westlake, and probably others I have forgotten! Fellow member David Dundee was there doing his thing with the Planetarium and the Tellus telescopes. I want to personally thank everyone for coming and showing the world (or at least Cartersville, GA.) how committed we are to educating the public.

    We set up two tables in one of the museum's labs and brought meteorites and flyers about MAG. Richard brought candy which was a big hit with the children. We showed off pieces of our collections and talked about why we thought meteorites are so fascinating. I believe the public really enjoyed our being there, and many thanked us for our time.

    We had no formal business meeting. Anita announced that MAG had a little over $1,000 in the bank.

  • Part time staff and explainer/volunteer schedule
  • Event Overview, TELLUS National Astronomy Day, May 2, 2009
Anita D. Westlake,
MAG President


 March 22nd, 2009:

Atlanta, GA
Emory's Math/Science Library
Meeting was called to order at 12:00 p.m.

Dave Gheesling
  • Guest Speaker:
    Our guest speaker was our own Dave Gheesling. He gave a talk and slide presentation on "Meteorites 101" which was geared towards the beginner enthusiast but covered all the bases in a fascinating and humorous way. Dave is a great speaker, who brings along specimens from his own collection to make us drool.

  • Visitor:
    Visitor "Shane" and his daughter were guests. Shane thought he had found a Georgiaite but it turned out to be quartz.

  • New members:
    New members attending were Bill Hart and his wife.

  • Annual dues:
    If you have not paid your annual dues by this meeting, you are past due and will no longer receive minutes and notices of future meetings.

  • Treasurer's Report:
    Wayne Dodd announced that we had $661.00 in the bank. After today's successful auction, we made $479.00 so now our total is $921.00! Way to go! Thanks so much to everyone who brought something to auction off.

  • MAG T-shirts:
    Anita announced that we still have MAG T-shirts for sale for $10.00

  • Friends of Mineralogy:
    She also announced that the Friends of Mineralogy, annual Fall Symposium will be held again this year at the Tellus: NW Georgia Science Museum on August 15, 2009 in conjunction with the Marty Zinn mineral and gem show. The symposium will be on Meteorites!

  • Tellus Museum Report:
    Julian Gray, curator of Tellus, and fellow MAG member announced that the museum was celebrating National Astronomy Day on May 2nd and asked MAG if we would like to participate. We would give two 10-minute talks out in the museum as well as staff a MAG information table all day. We all agreed that both Tellus and MAG would benefit from such an arrangement and thanked Julian for the offer.

  • Auction:
    Our 2nd MAG AUCTION was a great success. The March auction raised $479.00. Please help us continue this success at our next meeting!

  • Show/Tell/Trade:
    At the conclusion of the meeting, BUYING, TRADING AND VISITING commenced.

Anita D. Westlake,
MAG President


 January 25th, 2009:

Atlanta, GA
Emory's Math/Science Library
Meeting was called to order at 1:00 p.m.

Susanna Widicus-Weaver
  • Please share this with others who may not be on the MAG list, or others who may be interested in what we're up to!

  • Guest Speaker:
    Our GUEST SPEAKER was Susanna Widicus-Weaver, Asst. Professor of Chemistry at Emory University, and 1st winner of the Shoemaker Crating & Impact Award. She gave a great presentation on her research at Emory. She is studying what happens in the star cloud after the star explodes but before it begins to spin into a planetary disc. Her talk was quite interesting and engaging. Many members said it was the best talk ever. (Sorry some of you missed it!).

  • Dues & Membership:
    We had several NEW MEMBERS in attendance: Noah and Rhonda Daleo. We met them at the December 2008 North Atlanta Trade Center gem and mineral show where our MAG booth snagged unsuspecting new members. Alex Langoussis, Astronomy instructor at Emory University was also attending his first meeting.

    If you did not pay your 2009 MAG DUES by the January meeting, this is the last newsletter you will get. You will miss out on some great talks, great friends and great collecting opportunities.

    We have added 10 NEW MEMBERS since our last meeting.

  • Treasurer's Report:
    Wayne Dodd presented the TREASURER'S REPORT. After paying off our debts, we are still in the black, but just barely. We need more income! The auction helped quite a bit and I hope we can do something similar at every meeting to raise money. David Hardy was kind enough to burn about 20 CD's containing several meteor/rite related videos. He donated all proceeds back to MAG. Jerry Armstrong has promised to donate one of his original cosmic paintings (yet to be painted) to a MAG auction. Believe me, you will want to be there when it goes on the auction block.

  • Advertising MAG:
    We discussed ways to get our message out there. We talked about putting an ad in Rocks & Minerals, and Mineralogical Record, as well as making flyers to leave at museums: Tellus, Fernbank and the Carlos museum to name a few. Anita will work on creating the flyers and seek permission to leave them at prominent points in the museums. I will also leave some in the Math/Science Library at Emory University where we meet since the Planetarium is just across the hall. All other ideas are welcomed and appreciated!

  • Tellus Museum Report:
    Julian Gray, Curator at the Tellus: Northwest Ga. Science Museum, and MAG member, made a wonderful announcement: The Friends of Mineralogy, in conjunction with Tellus will hold their annual symposium at Tellus again this year. The symposium will be held during the 2nd Annual Marty Zinn Gem and Mineral Show, August 15, 2009, right next to the museum. This year's theme: METEORITES! Tellus is seeking speakers who can talk on any meteorite-related topic to present at the symposium. Please contact Julian.

  • MAG Website:
    Sean Murray has done such a good job with our web site, we all owe him our gratitude and a pat (or slap) on the back. Check it out regularly, and see what's new. Sean is looking to develop a MAG listserv, but needs to find a Windows-based server, (not UNIX). If you know of one, please let Sean know.

  • Outreach:
    Dave Gheesling and Jerry Armstrong continue to speak to schools about meteorites. Our future scientists are in elementary and high schools now. We need to grab their attention before they go off and do something lame like become corporate lawyers! Stop the madness! Help a kid become an astronomer, meteoritist, planetary geologist, etc.

  • Awards:
    The 2008 "GAG AWARDS" from Dave Gheesling were a hammering success. Dave was kind enough to print up little award certificates for just about everyone in the association. We were acknowledged for "Most locations in a meteorite collection", "1st MAG member to find a meteorite", "Thin-Section Award" and a couple of "Nice Guy" awards as well as many other thoughtful and amusing honors. Something so little can mean so much! Thanks, Dave. Let's all try to come up with ideas for future awards/awardees so the burden isn't resting solely on Dave's broad shoulders.

  • Survey:
    A MAG SURVEY was distributed to all in attendance. A more detailed report can be submitted as an addendum to this newsletter if requested. The most outstanding themes were: Most people wanted to meet every other month (instead of 4 times a year.) I'm up for that! That means that our next MAG meeting will be in March. Do you want to keep it on a Sunday morning/afternoon?

    Most people thought the President should stay in office for 2 years. That means that come July 2009 we need to elect a new President. Do you want to be President? Do you someone who does? Be prepared to vote at the first July meeting we have in 2009. Let the campaigning and mud-slinging begin!

  • Door Prize:
    Noah Daleo won a complete slice of a chondrite as the door prize for just showing up! (hopefully we can continue doing this and hyping that something free gets raffled off...add it to the "driving attendance" file...

  • Auction:
    After the meeting, the 1st MAG AUCTION was held. Approximately 15 items were auctioned off, and MAG was able to add more money to its coffers. Our new member, Noah, said he'd like to have an auction at every meeting, and I don't see why this couldn't be done. We just need more members to bring items of interest to donate.

  • Show/Tell/Trade:
    The January MAG meeting was formally adjourned around 4pm and a lively period of BUYING, TRADING AND VISITING commenced. This is my favorite part of the meetings and I usually end up going home with some heavy new space objects.

  • Next Meeting:
    Tentative March 22nd, Speaker TBA.

Anita D. Westlake,
MAG President

Please feel free to contact us with any questions or additions... Thank you!

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