GemLand Newsletter

  Facets of the Natural World Around Us ....

September 2015

   Dear Subscriber,

  Everyone had enough of the Monsoon, already? If you don't live in Phoenix, you might not understand this question. But for those of us who do live here, I think we are all waiting for the dry, golden days of Autumn.
I know I am!
  Speaking of Autumn, the Equinox is just around the corner. The days are already getting noticeably shorter, and after the 23rd, nighttime will be longer than daytime.
  Some of our best stargazing nights are just around the corner, too, when the Monsoon clouds clear out. The average day of the end of the Monsoon is September 13.
  Speaking of STARGAZING, it is not too early to start thinking about bookings for this Winter and Spring of 2016. We will get very busy then.
  We are entering our 20th year of professional astronomy events in the Phoenix and Scottsdale areas, having entertained and enlightened literally tens of thousands of people!
  Along those lines, I have placed below a fantastic image of the Earth, taken from the other side of the Moon (yes), along with a short explanation.
  Our feature GeoStory in this issue concerns those strangely-shaped orange rocks in Papago Park -- something every Phoenician should know about.
  This issue of our newsletter is bringing along more new design features, and over time you will notice the transition in both these messages and our website.
  And, in case you don't want to go through any of the other material in this newsletter, here is a link to a randomly chosen page (by me) from my website.
      Image above of GemLand's Sky Jewels               Stargazing Event.


  Our World 4 U:   On the Far Side of the Moon.

  Look, and look again!
  The video above is a real view of the Earth, and the Far Side of the Moon, taken from about a million miles (1.6 million km) away.
  There are five points, in and near Earth's orbit around the Sun, which are kind of "gravity wells". In each of these spots, an object, whether natural (e.g. asteroids) or man-made, can just sort of "hang out".
  This is because, in these cases, Earth's gravity and the Sun's gravity cancel out. They are called "Lagrange points", and the one where this picture was taken from is called "L1".
  In this spot, NASA has placed a satellite named DSCOVR, which, when fully operational next month, will send back live, streaming imagery of the fully lit side of Earth.
  You will be able to log on to their website and see some of this imagery. For now, they have released the above video, taken on July 16.
  Occasionally, our Moon passes directly between Earth and the Sun, and this is what you are seeing here.
  Note how dark the Moon seems. That is because its surface, surprisingly, on the average, has about the same reflectivity as an asphalt highway. This amazes a lot of people, because it looks so bright in the nighttime sky.
  And that is because its brightness is the combined result of zillions of reflections, of sunlight, off the soil particles on its surface. Earth's brightness is actually much greater, as you can see.
  Our Moon keeps the same side facing us, all of the time. No one even knew what the Far Side looked like until 1959, when the USSR sent a probe looping around it.
  What you are seeing here is the "Far Side", or "Back Side", or "Other Side" of the Moon. There is no such thing as the "Dark Side", as during its orbit around Earth, ALL of its surface gets lit up, for some time, in its roughly 29 day period.
  The "Dark Side" exists only in the minds, and collections, of "Pink Floyd" fans!
  You can read more about it here.
  Image above courtesy of NASA.


  Feature GeoStory™:  " Full Tilt "

  Forget all the holes. They are the least interesting things about these rocks in Papago Park.

  You'll probably not know why, unless you read this.   Read the whole story (archived)....
  You can also download and print any of our other GeoStories™ about Arizona and the Southwest for FREE....


  Discover the Superstition Mountains:

  You can explore an interactive map similar to our other very popular maps.

  Simply open GemLand's Map of the Superstition Mountains, and click on any name in color for scenic views and geological explanations.
  See more....


  FREE MAP of the Geology of the Phoenix area:

  Visit the Geology section of our website, from which you can download The Rocks of the Valley of the Sun.

  Easy to read and understand, this page-sized map can be carried in your car, used for school reports, or consulted to simply discover how those mountains down the street were created!
  Or you can discover the fascinating GeoHistory of the Valley of the Sun in one of our most popular sections....


  Event and Meeting Planners please take note:
  We have unique, intelligent, and entertaining programs to offer to your clients and guests.  There is no other tour like our "Rocks & Ruins™" adventure.  Two separate programs are available.
  For those moonlit evening dinners and parties, we have also added a Lunar Program to our Sky Jewels™ repertoire.  This is only possible for part of each month, though, depending on the phase of the moon.  Schedule your event(s) around the dates below.
  All times and dates are MST (= UTC-07).
  Astrology (Vedic) Today, September 10, 2015:
    Sun is in Leo
    Moon is in Cancer
    Mercury is in Virgo
    Venus is in Cancer
    Mars is in Cancer
    Jupiter is in Leo
    Saturn is in Scorpius
    Rahu is in Virgo
    Ketu is in Pisces
    Where are you?
    Find out here.  
  Upcoming Best Lunar Viewing dates:
    September 17 - September 30
    October 17 - October 29
    November 15 - November 28
    December 15 - December 27
  Celestial Events to watch for:
    SATURN visible - into October
    Full Harvest Moon - Sept 27
    AUTUMNAL EQUINOX - September 23, 1:20 am MST
    Full Hunters Moon - October 27
    Full Beaver Moon - November 25
    WINTER SOLSTICE - December 21, 9:48 pm MST
    Full Cold Moon - December 25
  And please remember, evenings for stargazing get taken up very rapidly in season, even months in advance, so booking early is recommended!
  Please contact us for scheduling or for more information....

Meeting &
Event Planners
See Below
for Suggestions

What's Happening
in Gem Land ....

�  Our World 4 U:
  Is anybody out there?
�  Feature GeoStory™:
  Full Tilt
  Always available -- Geology and GeoHistory of the Valley of the Sun in PDF format.  It's our most popular download!
  Geology of the Superstition Mountains.  Check it out!

Why "GemLand"?

  Well, Arizona is America's leading gem mining state, and we have been in the gemstone business for a long time.
  But now, we offer much more, too! You could say "gems in the sky", "gems of places", even "gems of wisdom" -- you decide.
  Whatever the case, there is something inside GemLand for you.
  Gemstones are rocks, and rocks are our love and our specialty. There are over 300 pages on our website for you to explore. Discover the many worlds of rocks!

  This free newsletter is sent only
to those who want it.  You are receiving it because you signed up for it at one of our events, are an industry contact, have given us your permission by email or verbally, or are an existing client.
  You can stop receiving it anytime you like. Simply UNSUBSCRIBE BELOW.

  Besides the subjects of this month's newsletter, GemLand also features:
  � Some of the Phoenix area's amazing rock gardens and museums (you have to see some of these!)
  � Architecture utilizing rocks
  � Hollywood Movies featuring rocks
  � Recommended books
  � Links to other websites that involve rocks
  � Geological definitions
  � And even local prehistory and archaeology!
  There are hundreds of pages, in English and Spanish, featuring over 150 views around the Valley of the Sun, and Sedona, and you can send any of them to your friends as E-Postcards for FREE.

  If this newsletter displays strangely, and some colors are hard to see, it may be because you are using web-based email, such as AOL, Hotmail, Gmail, or Yahoo, and it is not possible for us to override their settings. 
  Please try using your regular email client instead (e.g. Office or Office Express).


We are members of:
American Institute of
Professional Geologists
Dark-Sky Association
Southern Utah
Wilderness Alliance
This newsletter and all images, except where otherwise noted: 
� 2015 by Richard Allen. 
All rights reserved.


  The goal of this newsletter? To bridge the gap between the world of rocks and the world of everyday life, and to show the connections between rocks and all other living things.


Our clients include:

 � The Boulders Resort
 � Four Seasons Resort
 � The Phoenician
 � JW Marriott at Desert Ridge
 � Marriott's Camelback Inn
 � Sanctuary on Camelback Mtn
 � Royal Palms Hotel
 � Montelucia Resort
 � Desert Botanical Garden
 � City of Phoenix
 � City of Scottsdale
 � SW Conference Planners
 � Desert Mountain Community
 � AlliedPRA Arizona
 � The Rocks
 � University Club of Phoenix
 � Camelback Adventures
 � Canto Event Management
 � Merestone
 � AZA Events
 � TBA Global Events
 � Kuoni Destination Mgmt
 � Epic International
 � Scottsdale Music & Ent.
 � Stellar Adventures
 � Sky Safari / James Ashley
 � Adventures 2000
 � Fort McDowell Adventures
 � Pacific Event Productions
 � White Star Concierge
 � Pointe Hilton Tapatio Cliffs
 � St. Olaf College Elderhostel










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