Ribbon cutting for new business in Castle Dale
Rocks from all over the world have made their way to Emery County. Well, they may have had a little help from Patrick Braun. Braun is a rock enthusiast. He started collecting rocks when he was a young man and he hasn't stopped yet. His fascination with rocks has turned into a business on Main Street in Castle Dale, right next to the car wash.
A grand opening and ribbon cutting celebration was held on Oct. 27. The Emery County Business Chamber with president Tyler Jeffs hosted the ribbon cutting. Commissioner Laurie Pitchforth was also on hand and congratulated the Braun family on their new business. Braun said, "It's amazing what Mother Nature has to offer the world and how well preserved these items are. I am a silversmith and taught classes at the college. I make jewelry. Some of these rocks are millions of years old and they are preserved. These stones come from all over the world. We have our rock shop side of the business and also the monument business. My wife does the art work and I do the carving on the stone. We have monuments for graves and also do stones for private yards and businesses. Rocks make great gifts. Our business hours are 10:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and on Saturdays we are open from 11-3 p.m.
"I helped start the Castle Country gem and mineral show and it's been well received. People love the rocks. It's exciting. They like seeing the fossils and what nature has to offer. We have traveled the world gathering stones and gems. I am from Ferron. We have traveled the world meeting people and going to gem shows and gathering rocks from all parts of the world. One of our favorite stops is the show in Tokyo. The international shows have been very fun and educational," said Patrick.
Amber said on the design part of the business, she talks to the customers to see what they want on the stone and what type of stone they prefer. "I then draw up the design and create a stencil on the computer which Patrick uses to do the carving. We purchased the business from the Bunderson's and Sharon Bunderson helped train me on what I needed for the design work. Some of the stones come from local quarries, but some of the granite comes from as far away as China and India. Some of the marble headstones don't hold up, but the granite ones are hard to scratch and hold up well. We use special paint in the carvings to make them stand out. Some people want that, but others don't. Our stones can be cut to all shapes and sizes. People really can have whatever they want and we can work with any design they choose. We are naturally sympathetic when people are here picking out a headstone, it really is a trying time for people when they lose a loved one. We have a new baby on the way and we are really excited about this new business. This is what Patrick loves. He's always been fascinated with rocks and meeting people from all around the world and people who share the same interests as he does. One thing he wants to do more of is visit the local schools and give presentations on the rocks and bring displays for the children to learn more," said Amber.
The three sons also get involved in the business and they like all the rocks. The sons include Dallin, Landon and Jesse. Jesse has enjoyed his trips to Japan and says most people his age don't get that opportunity to go around the world. He has learned much from his mom and dad and traveling to meet new people and experience new adventures at the gem shows. Jesse lists his favorite rock as larimar.
The name of the new business is Braun and Bunderson Monument and Braun Lapidary.