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Colorado woman finds 8.52 carat diamond at Arkansas park

Colorado woman finds 8.52 carat diamond at Arkansas park
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An 8.52 carat diamond has been found by a Colorado woman at Arkansas’ Crater of Diamonds State Park at Murfreesboro.

Park officials said Friday that the gem found by Bobbie Oskarson of Longmont, Colorado, is the fifth largest diamond found since the park was established in 1972. The park does not provide an estimate of the diamond’s potential value.

Park visitor Bobbie Oskarson of Longmont, Colorado, discovered the diamond while digging around the Pig Pen, a 37-acre search field inside the park named for its muddy terrain after rainfall.

At first she thought the diamond was a quartz crystal because of its size and shape, but a park staffer confirmed later that it was indeed a diamond.

“Ms. Oskarson and her boyfriend Travis Dillon saw the Crater of Diamonds State Park on an Arkansas highway map while in the nearby town of Hot Springs and decided to visit the park. And what a lucky first visit it was for her!” park interpreter Waymon Cox said in a press release.

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Oskarson named her find the Esperanza Diamond, after her niece, and plans to keep the gem.

More than 30 diamonds have been discovered in the park’s search area this year. Cox said above-normal rainfall this year is one reason for the frequent finds.

“Rain, plus the regular plowing of the search field by our maintenance staff, increases visitors’ chances of finding diamonds in the search area,” he said.

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