The showcases and events at the annual Tucson Gem and Mineral show attract visitors from around the globe. In the case of science writer and explorer Geoff Notkin, the financial opportunities of the gem show motivated him to make Tucson his home.

“This is my sixteenth consecutive Gem Show and have lived in Tucson now for ten years,” Notkin said. “It’s all because of the gem show that I moved to Tucson.”

Notkin, co-host of the science channel program “Meteorite Men,” is part of the hotel and tent shows that operate around the big showcase events like the one at the Tucson Convention Center.

“A lot of collectors, and even a lot of Tucsonans, are not fully aware of this amazing phenomenon that takes place here in these hotels,” Notkin said. “Every single room here becomes a showroom for about two weeks.”

“It’s like a miniature United Nations that functions perfectly,” Notkin added.