As a child I had a natural curiosity about my environment. I hungered to understand how and why processes that shaped our world occurred. My scientific mind was already in search of answers to the many questions I had. I remember the first time I found a fossil in the creek at the park in my hometown; I was six years old. I was so excited. I knew I had found a fossil because I had learned what a fossil was in elementary school, but I didn’t know the beautiful rocky shell I had found probably came from right here in Indiana. I still have that fossil. Now I know what kind it is. Needless to say, my interest in becoming an amateur geologist began at an early age.
Many of you are loyal patrons of the Crawfordsville District Public Library. We strive to bring to you educational and creative programming, both in person and virtually. Some of you may remember before the pandemic, that we had a nature series on Patterns in Nature. It was a three-part series on symmetry in nature. It was met with enthusiasm and so, this fall, we are pleased to announce another nature series: Geology. Some of you may find a casual interest in rocks and minerals, but have you ever wanted to learn to identify what you are seeing or holding in your hand (or wearing on your finger)? Do you want to know how scientists go about determining what types of minerals comprise different kinds of rocks? Do you want to know what kinds of rocks and minerals are found in Indiana? What about an interest in fossils? Did you know that many different kinds of fossils can be found right here, along Sugar Creek? Did you know that there is an earthquake zone in Indiana?
If you found your curiosity peaked with a desire to learn more, stay tuned, as the series begins in August and runs through November. Each month, a different aspect of geology will be presented. The first program in the series will be over mineral identification; the second program will focus on types of rocks; the third program on geologic time and fossils of Indiana; and the concluding program will discuss plate tectonics and the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone.
Whew. That sounds complicated. I promise these programs will be presented with the same excitement and enthusiasm as all our programs. Science is fun, and so are rocks. They may not seem like they have a lot of personality, but by the time the series is finished, you will have gained a deeper appreciation for the ground under your feet and that fossil you found in the creek. We will be able to claim the title of amateur geologist. See you in August, Crawfordsville.
Please note, this program may be postponed or canceled on short notice due to the severity of the COVID-19 pandemic in our community.
Stephanie Morrissette is a reference assistant at the Crawfordsville District Public Library.