Australian Opal Centre

G’Day Mob,

I live a good life.

Keeping fit, staying close to nature through farming, and sharing the stories of rural Australia are three things for which I am most grateful.

This week I have indulged in all of them, starting with a hockey carnival on the weekend that saw six games, a couple of late nights and endless hours of laughter with good friends. Coming home it was straight into farm work – drafting cattle, checking paddocks and enjoying the sun on my face and a good dog by my side. Then there were a couple of interviews for my writing, which brings me in contact with extraordinary people and sees me travel to extraordinary places.

One story I was particularly proud to be a part of was on the Australian Opal Centre, published in the current edition of Outback magazine.

"A Vision Splendid"; Issue 96; Aug/Sept 2014

“A Vision Splendid”; Issue 96; Aug/Sept 2014

This story saw Brian and I travel to Lightning Ridge to research the new Opal Centre, which once complete will be a mecca for opal enthusiasts the world over. The building itself will be an environmental marvel – heated and cooled by artesian water, producing its own electricity and using natural ventilation and lighting.

Well, the building will need to be impressive to match the collection it will hold: mining artifacts (including a set of opal dentures), striking opal specimens from across Australia and opalised fossils. That’s right, there are dinosaur bones and Gondwana pine cones, snail shells and turtle shells – all encased in the spectacular colour of opal.

113 pinecnes

113 bone

The Australian Opal Centre will truly be a remarkable place and Rebel and Jenni and the team are working hard to make it a reality.

Read an excerpt of my article here and then visit the Australian Opal Centre website.

Maybe you could even come away with a dinosaur medallion!



2 responses to “Australian Opal Centre

  1. Opal dentures…now there’s a colorful smile! At one point I thought opal might make good guitar inlay material, but they might be too soft, and I’m sure far too expensive. I don’t know how thin they can be cut compared to Abalam. What do you think, Mandy?

    • I imagine an opal inlay would be quite expensive but those abalam inlays are impressive. We used to dive for abalone and I have some of the shells polished and hanging on our wall. Send me pics if you ever find an opal one!

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