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Bidders break record at Sac State Rock Auction


Guest auctioneer Terry Wanless, far right, Sac State’s athletic director, checks out the green item of the green-and-gold pair of quartz auctioned off at the University’s annual Rock Auction. Ben McCovery holds the quartz aloft while Katherine Moss displays the gold half of the duo.

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Sacramento State’s annual Rock Auction was a rock-solid success this year. The Nov. 18 event raised $15,000, shattering the record of $11,000 it set last year.

About 350 rockhounds, gem-seekers and fossil enthusiasts from across Northern California converged on the Alumni Center for a dynamic evening that included many unique items in a fundraising event for the University’s Geology Club.

Three items fetched $900 or more. An ammonite slab went for $900, a hand-drawn map of America’s geological regions dating from the 1800s sold for $950, and an amethyst megavesicle drew a winning bid of $1,025.

Club adviser Lisa Hammersley thanked the many donors who have been extremely generous over the years, and noted the support from the alumni, community members and Geology Department friends who show up every year.

She also thanked the Geology Department students for their successful effort. “The students worked really hard all semester to put the auction together, and there was a huge turnout of student volunteers for this year’s event,” Hammersley says.

Proceeds from the event go directly toward the Geology Club, and help to offset the costs of field equipment, mapping trips, workshops and lab materials for students.

The club is also intensely involved with community outreach. Philanthropy from the Rock Auction allows Sacramento State geology students to collect specimens and assemble rock boxes for local elementary school classrooms, participate in American River cleanups, and promote community education and scientific discovery.

For more information about the Geology Club, visit For media assistance, call Sacramento State’s Public Affairs office at (916) 278-6156.

– Craig Koscho