The Digging Contest wiill be held in late September, 2021.
Participating Mines so far are the Twin Creeks Mine, upper and lower portion.
Come & Dig in an Actual Working Quartz Crystal Mine in the Heart of the Ouachita Mountains in the Quartz Crystal Capital of the World – MOUNT IDA, ARKANSAS!!!
Test Your Skills
Meet other Miners
KEEP ALL YOU FIND!
Maybe Even Win a Prize!!
Prize Money Donated by
First National Bank, and other businesses and individuals in the Mount Ida Area.
Prize Money divided between the top 3 winners in each division.
Crystal Trophies and Cash Prize to First, 2nd and 3rd place winners in each division. PLUS, each entrant is a guest and receives a dinner at the banquet, and a digging contest t-shirt.
BE FAMOUS!! Winners usually have their pictures posted online, placed in the local newspaper and, of course, they are posted on the Mount Ida Area Chamber of Commerce Facebook site and the official Website: www.mtidachamber.com!
HEY!, YOU WILL STILL BE ABLE TO DIG AS INDIVIDUALS OR GROUPS AT AREA MINES!!! It is just the digging areas set aside for the contest that are unavailable, from Wednesday before the Dig, until Monday, after the Dig.
THIS IS AN AMATUER DIGGING CONTEST TO SEE WHO THE BEST AMATEUR DIGGER IS THIS YEAR. YES!!! THIS IS A PUBLICITY STUNT TO ATTRACT PEOPLE and TOURISM TO THE AREA, as tourism is our main industry.
***THIS IS NOT FOR PROFESSIONAL DIGGERS. We ‘know’ who you are… IF YOU WANT TO ‘LOAD UP’ ON CRYSTALS IN THE POCKETS OPENED UP FOR THE CONTEST AND TAKE THEM AWAY FROM THE MT IDA AREA AND SELL THEM SOMEWHERE ELSE, like Maumelle, Quartzsite or Washington State, LIKE SOME OF YOU with NO MORALS and NO HONOR, HAVE BEEN DOING FOR YEARS, THEN PAY THE $25/day FEES TO DIG PRIVATELY, OR GO BUY IT, LIKE EVERYONE ELSE WHO IS HONEST. THE MOUNT IDA CHAMBER AND THE PARTICIPATING MINES ARE ACTIVELY WORKING TOGETHER TO WEED OUT ALL THE KNOWN PROFESSIONAL DIGGERS, WHO ARE, IN ESSENCE, CHEATING, STEALING AND LYING. IF YOU FIND THIS OFFENSIVE, THEN TOO BAD- you’ve earned it. IT IS ALSO NOT A MEASURE OF WHO HAS THE BEST MINE. ALL THE MINES HAVE WONDERFUL MATERIAL, OR ELSE THEY WOULD NOT HAVE A MINE THERE!***
Of course, we always need VOLUNTEERS to help with the various aspects of putting on a show and contest like this. We would much rather have your help than have you stealing crystals under false pretenses. That being said…
Please note: there are only 150 spots to fill, which are filling fast! After that the contest is full.
Keep all you dig. Crystals turned in for judging will be returned to you at the conclusion of the contest. Please note: If one or more of the crystals you have dug for each day is one of the top three in either category, points or clusters, then it will be on public display until the end of the awards ceremony.
As stated before: THIS IS A PUBLICITY STUNT, to attract people to the tourist area, and also, designed so people could see and understand how quartz is graded and how much it is worth. The World wants and needs to see the winning crystals! Photos are welcome and encouraged!
Use only hand tools – picks, shovels, hammers, screwdrivers, digger bars, carts, wheelbarrows, bottle jacks, etc. Any human ‘helpers’ must also be registered and paid. You must provide your own tools, buckets and wrapping material for crystals. You will be provided with a bag with your entrant number on it for each day for your entries into the contest. These will be returned to you after the awards ceremony.
Contestants will not be allowed to ‘practice dig’ in the participating mines on Wednesday before the dig.
You MUST be in good physical shape to enter this contest. Digging is very strenuous. If you have a pacemaker or any other physical condition that prevents you from performing strenuous exercise, the PLEASE do not enter this contest. This is only common sense. Thank you.
Contestants MUST NOT be engaged in the quartz crystal mining business. (like me and other professional full time dealers and miners)
Ages 10-16 may enter with adult contestant supervision and will fall into the ‘young miners’ division..
Contestants must assemble in the Assay Office each morning before proceeding to the mine they choose to dig in for that day. You may only dig in one mine per day. Each mine has its own advantages and disadvantages for the diggers. As far as crystal quality is concerned, all the mines have great crystals, or else they would not have created a mine there.
Contestants can choose which mine, or mines, they want to dig in during each day of the contest. Contestants may not ‘switch’ mines during the allotted time frame for each day. You must stay in the mine you chose that day, for the whole day, for as long as you choose during the hours of the contest. Dig as many or as few hours in this time frame as you choose.
After the crystals are turned in for final judging, there will be a banquet for the diggers, which is included in your entrance fee. It is $15 for everyone else. Immediately following the banquet, the winners will be announced and awards will be given. Then the winning specimens will be returned to the respective diggers.
By entering this contest:
Diggers understand that any and all specimens that are daily winners will be put on public display for all to see, and returned to the respective diggers after the awards ceremony. The Chamber will take extreme care in handling each specimen, though the Chamber will not be liable for any damage. They will be returned after the Awards Ceremony.
Confirmation of your registration will be sent to you as soon as your registration form and fee are received and processed .If you have a problem with that, then you may want to re-consider entering this contest. Your banquet ticket and t-shirt will be presented on orientation day.
You are also invited to come and see my beautiful crystal yard, garden and processing center here at the World Headquarters by private appointment. PLEASE FEEL FREE TO EMAIL ME WITH ANY QUESTIONS YOU MAY HAVE, AS I HAVE BEEN WITH INVOLVED IN VARIOUS WAYS SINCE 1993.
Click “Learn More” below to enter the Chamber’s website- www.mtidachamber.com