Terri-Jane Yuzda

A Night to Dig Up Some Information

Public Relations Coordinator

On Nov. 4 Calgary's geoscience community turned out for an informative and entertaining evening as the Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists, the Education Trust Fund, and the Canadian Society of Exploration Geophysicists presented their annual Honourary Address at the Jubilee Auditorium. A crowd of about 800 was treated to a variety of presentations based on the evening's theme, Discovery - Maps that Changed the World.

The event was a tribute to the importance of geosciences in understanding the past, the present and the future.

The night's keynote speaker was Dr. Kirk Johnson, curator of paleontology and head of the Department of Earth Sciences at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science. He spoke of finding proof of the existence of dinosaurs and tropical rainforests in the Rocky Mountains.

Dr. Johnson's speech was of particular interest because of the geographical similarities between Denver and Calgary. He further captivated the audience by announcing his fondness for an Alberta treasure, the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Drumheller.

Dr. Johnson entertained the crowd with stories of his recent archaeological discoveries in the Denver area. Because of the rapid population growth in and around Denver (about 80,000 people per year move there), new housing developments are bringing about many new potential digging sites.

Dr. Johnson described how his work has helped uncover evidence that the great dinosaurs once roamed the land now occupied by urban Denver. Recent excavations led to the discovery of Colorado's first Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton. (Baseball fans may be interested to know that the Colorado Rockies mascot is a dinosaur because of the Triceratops skull found at home plate while Coors Field was being built.)

The evening featured two additional presentations by APEGGA members. Pamela Strand, P.Geol., president and CEO of Shear Minerals, discussed her experiences in Northern Canada where a lot of land remains unexplored, including many kimberlite sites where diamonds are found.

Dr. Robert Stewart, P.Geoph., an APEGGA councillor and a geophysics professor at the University of Calgary, gave a presentation on his work in Belize studying the Mayan ruins. He described the role geophysics has played in understanding this technologically advanced society.

APEGGA was a sponsor of this entertaining evening. The presentations demonstrated the important role geology and geophysics play in everyday lives. Congratulations to the organizers and all who attended for their strong support of the geoscience community.

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