Be sure to come to Tucson when the Orchid dinner is being held.
There are many hotel in the down town area.
The only show that charges an entry fee is the Tucson Gem and Mineral
show. It is basically a retail show open to the public. Unfortunately
it is held at the end of many of the other shows. By the time the
TG&MS starts most visitors from out of state have left Tucson.
The TG&MS has some display cases of excellent jewelry from around the
world and mineral collections that are very good.
The AGTA show is mainly for gem dealers and as Sam said they are for
serious buyers only therefore it is harder to get into.
The GLDA show is also for more serious gem buyers. the GLDA show is
slightly easier to get into.
Some shows are easier to register with. You will need business cards
and a copy of your business license. Most of the other show will give
a badge to anyone with any type of business license. You might find
the wife of a gas station owner buying jewelry wholesale.
It could take you two days just to go through the massive G&LW show.
They have maybe 300 to 400 dealers at the Holidome alone. The
Roadway Inn has another section. This show carries everything.
Be prepared for massive crowds. Especially at the beginning of the
main shows. There are many independent organizations holding shows.
Some shows run for a week or two and other shows run longer. There
are rock dealers set up at a gas station. Other dealers are set up
along the freeway access road.
There are shuttles routes that will take you to any of the many
Bring a back pack or something to carry all your new found
treasures. It is difficult to look while holding a paper bag full of
A BIG SUGGESTION: If you find something you like but are not sure you
want to buy it without looking at other things make a detailed note
where the item is. The shows are so massive that if you don't mark
where to return to buy a selected item you may never find it's
location again. The show catalog has maps of all the shows. This is a
good place to make location notes.
The weather is usually warm during the show. The biggest
disappointment you will have is when you go home and look at all the
treasures you bought and see so little compared to what you have see
at the shows. You will thing surely you must have bought more stuff.
Hope to see you at the Orchid show.
Lee Epperson, Phoenix