FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  October 15, 2012
Contact: Sebastian D’Elia, 908-527-4419
Tom Plante, 908-527-4746

Explore the World of Rocks, Minerals, Fossils & Gems at Trailside, Oct. 20-21;
Special Lecture, “Mastodons in NJ” on Sunday

MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ – The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the Department of Parks and Community Renewal invite you to explore the fascinating world of rocks, minerals, fossils and gems at Trailside Nature & Science Center on Saturday, Oct. 20, and Sunday, Oct. 21, from noon to 5 p.m. on both days. The weekend’s activities will also include a special lecture on Mastodons in New Jersey.

“This two-day event, open to the public, brings the world of rocks and gems to life with many exhibits and displays,” said Freeholder Chairman Alexander Mirabella. “And the featured lecture on Sunday ties in with our popular new Mastodon Exhibit at Trailside.”

Sponsored jointly with the New Jersey Mineralogical Society, the Rock, Gem & Mineral Show will host more than 25 vendors selling minerals, rocks, gemstones, jewelry, sea shells and fossils from around the world. Geologists young and old will be mesmerized by the variety of specimens on display and for sale.

Admission to the weekend Rocks and Gems event is free. On both days, vendors will be displaying and selling their specimens and there will be ongoing free children’s activities.

Sunday will feature a separate special presentation from 2:30 to 3:15 p.m. in Trailside’s Auditorium: a lecture on “Mastodons in New Jersey,” which celebrates Trailside’s new mastodon exhibit.

The lecture on Sunday, offered by Hofstra University faculty member and geologist, Steve Okulewicz, examines the lifestyle of the mastodons which roamed the forested lands and swamps during the Pleistocene epoch. In New Jersey, the remains of these six-ton, vegetarian browsing beasts have been found in several localities. The audience will enjoy the illustrated talk on these large elephant-like creatures and other extraordinary animals such as the giant sloth that once inhabited New Jersey.

Tickets for the lecture about Mastodons in New Jersey go on sale at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 21. The fee is $8 for Union County residents and $10 for out-of-county residents. This lecture is recommended for ages 9 and older.

For more information about the Rock, Mineral & Gem Show, or upcoming programs and special events at Trailside, call 908-789-3670 or visit www.ucnj.org/trailside.  Trailside Nature and Science Center is located at 452 New Providence Road (at Coles Avenue) in Mountainside and is a service of the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders.


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MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ – “Mastodons in New Jersey” is a feature presentation on Sunday, Oct. 21, at 2:30 p.m. during the two-day Rock, Mineral & Gem Show at Trailside Nature & Science Center in Mountainside. The lecture offered by Hofstra faculty member and geologist, Steve Okulewicz, examines the lifestyles of mastodons that roamed forested lands and swamps during the Pleistocene. This program ties in with the new Mastodon Exhibit at Trailside and is suitable for audiences aged 9 years and older. Admission to the lecture is $8 per person for Union County residents; $10 for out-of-county residents. Tickets go on sale at 12:30 p.m. Sunday.

Admission is free to the Rock, Mineral & Gem Show, open Saturday, Oct 20 and Sunday, Oct. 21 from noon to 5 p.m. with more than 25 vendors displaying and selling rocks, minerals, gems and fossils from around the world. There will be ongoing free children’s activities. Trailside is located at 452 New Providence Road in Mountainside and is a service of the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders. For additional information call 908-789-3670 or visit us on the web: www.ucnj.org/trailside.

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For more information on any Union County press release, please contact Sebastian D’Elia, Communications Director for the County of Union, or a designee listed at the top of this press release. Please join the County of Union online at www.ucnj.org, on Facebook at www.ucnj.org/facebook, and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/countyofunionnj .