I’ll be in Arizona from Jan 12 to 30 for eye surgery. (Cataract
replacement lens exchange–I’d be happy to share the whole sad story
privately…) If all goes well and I can see to solder again, I want
to check out some of the Gem Show. I’ve been surfing around and it’s
quite confusing to a newbie. Catalog-in-Motion is no more Is there
anything else that offers instruction, demos, workshops, etc. Is
there a better website than Tucson's Gem Shows Events Guide for info?
How long you stay in Tucson, I guess would depend upon how much you
are planning on spending and how well you want to do (price wise) in
your purchases. I am usually there for 10 - 14 days.
Bring csah, checks, credit cards, debit cards. If you are not very
careful " you will spend it all (cash) and max out all of your cards
and use all of your checks.
It would take about a whole day just to do a cursory pass through at
one of the many shows. I doubt that you could see my whole show (GJX)
in one day.
You should have or print out Business cards. Bring a bunch of them
On the links above - when a show is “wholesale” only - they will
tell you what credentials are necessary for registering for the
show. You can usually click on the show and pre-register - so your
badge will be waiting (at least theoretically) for you when you get
to the registration desk at the show. They will all demand a
business card and a picture ID for you to receive your Buyer’s
The three really hard to get in “wholesale” only shows are the:
The Gem & Lapidary Wholesalers at Gem Mall 2011 and Gem & Lapidary
Wholesalers at the Holiday Inn/Holidome 2011 say it is a “wholesale”
show - but I have never had any problems just walking in " of course
I always have an Exhibitors Badge on when I go.
You should probably also go to:
J.O.G.S. International Exhibits at the Tucson Expo Center
Tucson Electric Park Gem & Mineral Show
Tucson Electric Park RV Gem Show
And you will probably spend at least a whole day visiting the shows
on the service road on the other side of the Freeway from the GJX -
all in walking (long walks) distance from my show (GJX) and the AGTA
show. Some of them aRe:
Rapa River Gem & Mineral Show
Pueblo Gem & Mineral Show at Riverpark Inn
Howard Johnson Gem and Mineral Show
La Quinta Gem and Mineral Show
Plus several more:
Also see the Jewelry, Gem and Mineral Exposition 2011/Simpson Street
(on the same side of the freeway as the GJX show) - probably free
parking here and maybe a shuttle to some of the other shows)
If you are in Tucson from the 1st through the 6th come by the GJX
show and say hello to us in Booth # 205. If all works out right this
year we will have a whole booth filled with collector gems and
Robert P. Lowe Jr.
Tucson - Feb 1 - 6, 2011 - GJX booth # 205
Hi all - I have an odd question. I don’t always get to Tucson for
the gem shows, but this year my husband will be working there all of
Feb., and is flying me out to stay with him. I would really love to
work one of the (wholesale) shows, doing retail or whatever. Does
anyone have a suggestion for finding a temp job there? I have show
experience (13 shows last year for myself), excellent customer
service and an extensive knowledge of gem ID and jewelry
construction. Thank you in advance for anyone taking the time to
shoot me a thought.
tucson here you come! here are some tips that have worked for us
over the years of tucson trips:
take canvas/denim bags with straps that fit over your shoulders -
your arms will thank you.
even better is to use one of those small roller bags that doubles
as your carry on.
best of all is a backpack/roller bag with padded straps and belt
that fold away and a pull handle to roll it when the straps are
take a water bottle in a holder and keep it filled. also lotion.
the tucson/pima library, a block north of congress/broadway, the
main east-west road (congress turns into broadway east of main
downtown section but some maps are confusing) at corner of stone ave.
and pennington, a block north of congress, there you can sign up to
use a computer. take i.d. there’s a bankofamerica across from the
a block east of the library is the best, most generous and
reasonably priced breakfasts and lunches in tucson, Dizzy G’s. it’s
open mon-fri with the world’s best staff for ages - if you go tell
connie or irene that their long time fans, the couple with the
walking staff from florida, say ‘hello’.
a reasonable dinner place is the kettle restaurant, corner of
starr pass blvd and freeway st (freeway runs along I-10) - just below
the row of hotel venues on freeway - across from the kettle is a
clothing: we learned from backpacking that layering is the way to
do tucson. we can swelter one day and then wake up to freezing the
next morning and by afternoon it was warm again.
a few days after the first show opens there will be free copies of
’colored stone’ magazines all over tucson. get one! it’s by far the
biggest, best and most complete source of show there is
a smaller pub for physic shoppers - don’t confuse the two.
the show shuttles will get you to every venue - pick up the
shuttle schedules, shuttle vans run only to open show venues. the
vans hold 13 and have room behind the back seat to stow your roller
bag, etc. and don’t forget to regularly give a little tip to the
drivers as you exit their vans. *caveat: keep in mind that most of
the hotels I-10 have changed names more often than my father changed
wives (8 times).
wholesale shows will not allow you in without a state sales tax
certificate or federal tax number. save yourself embarrassment and
don’t get turned away. the ‘colored stone’ show issue tags each
’wholesale only show’. if you have a tax certificate and can hit only
one venue, the gem mall/holidome venue is best - it’s next to the
electric/edison park (great for those seeking tools/equipment and/or
flying? don’t wear hightop lace-up boots to the airport - you’ll
hold up the line to un-lace them and might miss your flight
re-lacing them. don’t have a soda, etc. in your carryon - dry snacks
only - airlines now charge for those used-to-be-free bags of 13
peanuts or 6 pretzels. check that your laptop, carryon bag, and purse
don’t count as three pieces of luggage and you get charged 2 extra
fees. we always fly southwest to tucson - it’s the only airline with
reasonable fares without extra fees for any luggage. if you want a
blanket or pillow, wear your coat onto the plane to fold and use -
airlines now charge for who-knows-whose-head-was-on-it pillows and
blankets. (so far no ‘pay to use’ meter on the loo door)
there are several orchid-ites living in tucson, so check out the
ones who might be able to fill you in on other stuff.
people, wisdom is buying what you like when you find it - it might
not be there when you go back. (think more now, regret less later)
I have never been to Tucson, but have heard a great deal about the
event and would love to go. Since I still haven’t taken the big step
of starting my own jewelry business, I’d like to go and learn as much
as I can. Is there anyone (female) who would be interested in sharing
lodging? I live in San Antonio; is there anyone from here who is
going? I’d be interested in sharing gas costs if you are driving.
I love to be in Tucson but we have other travel plan and this I like
to ask is there any supply store or gems store I can visit when we in
Benson, MS or Nashville TN, we will be there first 2 weeks of March
would nice to see a gem show anyone have info for me ?
Super cold morning (Still sunny)in Tucson! AGTA was somewhat quiet.
Got to see some fabulous work for the AGTA Spectrum Awards. Also
Some great pieces from the Smithsonian on display including the
Cullinan Blue Necklace, an Edwardian masterpiece. Lots of high
quality but not allot of Buyers. Prices seemed a bit up
but everyone seemed willing to negotiate. Mel Bohler at BK Bros had
some great diamond slices and rose cut diamonds at really good
prices. GJX had some incredible stones -Nomad’s Co had suites and
sets of Spinel, Topaz and Tourmalines not seen anywhere else.They are
incredible! Got to see the MJSA Innovation award winning mill by
Artisan CNC- really nice machine with push the button walk away ease
of use. Day did warm up, about 55 when the shows closed at 6.
Supposed to be our regularly seasonal temperatures as the weekend
progresses. We will see what tomorrow brings at the Show.