This month, guests at Arkansas’s Crater of Diamonds State Park are invited to celebrate the park’s golden anniversary on April 22 and 23.
At 4 p.m. on Friday, April 22, retired Executive Director of Parks and Tourism Richard Davies and retired Park Superintendent Jim Cannon will speak on the early days of the park. Immediately following, the park will unveil a new wayside exhibit on the 8.52-carat Esperanza Diamond, discovered at the park in June 2015. Attendees may bring chairs or blankets to sit on during these activities.
On Saturday, April 23, the park will host its 26th Annual Prospector’s Treasure Hunt for painted bottles and rocks hidden throughout the diamond search area, redeemable for a variety of prizes from area businesses. Park staff will also host fun games during the day for visitors of all ages to play.
From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, park guests can meet Crater diamond finders and see dozens of beautiful diamonds during the 14th Annual Famous Crater Diamonds Exhibit in the Diamond Discovery Center classroom. The following exhibitors and collections at this year’s event:
The Houran Diamond Collection – Private Collection
The Esperanza Diamond – Presented by Loyd Stanley, retired jeweler and owner of Stanley Jewelers Gemologist, North Little Rock
Dawn Barnes – Daughter of longtime park visitors and diamond finders Donald and Mollie Mayes, Springdale
Sam Jones – Regular Crater diamond finder, Fayetteville
Kevin Kinard – Finder of the 9.04-carat Kinard Friendship Diamond, Maumelle
Scott Kreykes – Regular Crater diamond finder, Dierks
Kenny and Melissa Oliver – Finders of many Crater diamonds, including the 2.44-carat Silver Moon Diamond in March 2011, Rosston
Jason Rigdon – Regular park visitor and Crater diamond finder, Freeburg, IL
Troy Savage – Regular park visitor and Crater diamond finder, Antlers, OK
Louella Terrell – Collector of Crater diamonds, Murfreesboro
All event activities are free with the purchase of admission to the diamond search area ($10 for ages 13 & up; $6 for ages 6-12; ages 5 & under are free). For more information, contact Crater of Diamonds State Park at 870-285-3113 or email CraterofDiamonds@arkansas.com.