The North American Sea Glass Association’s 10th Annual Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland will be held August 29-30th, 2015 and will feature three lectures on Saturday. Each of the lectures will offer attendees a unique look into the historical significance of objects found along the region’s DelMarVa shorelines, and we’ll also have a lecture on Greek Sea Glass.
Christeena H. Minopetros will feature a lecture on Greek sea glass on Saturday at 3pm titled, “Greece and Her Islands, A Sea Glass Lover’s Dream”. Join Christeena as she takes you on a sea glass journey through the Greek Islands. After spending the last 15 summers sailing and collecting sea glass in Greece, she will share her experiences, photos and maybe even some of her secret collecting sites.
Can you share what started your love of sea glass collecting and beach-combing?
Some of my first memories are long summer days on the beach with my family in New Jersey. Shells, driftwood and sea glass were abundant back in those days, and we brought them home by the bucket full. Even though I did not work with sea glass professionally until many years later, I am sure that those magical days influenced my love of shorelines and beachcombing.
We know that you are from New Jersey and lived in Greece. Tell us a little about what took you to Greece and your early collecting experiences there?
I had a wonderful life in New Jersey. But after visiting Greece the first time on a sailing trip by myself for my 40th birthday, I fell in love with the country. One year later I sold everything including my flower shop that I had owned for 15 years and never looked back. Every night I would go to the beach to watch the sunset, I remember running my hand through the sand one night and finding sea glass, my aha moment. By the time I met my husband 5 months later my lovely little Greek veranda was filled with bowls, bottles and jars of the incredible gems.
As collectors ourselves, we know how exciting it is to find a special piece of sea glass, ceramic pottery or fossilized items. Do you have a special piece that you cherish more than others you’ve found? Describe the piece and historical significance, if applicable?
This is a hard question because we have a massive unusual private collection. But many years ago on a bitter cold winter day in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey I spotted a small piece of clear/white sea glass peeking through the sand, and to my surprise it was this gorgeous deck prism. Used for centuries before electricity to radiate light below deck on sailing ships.
Is there a favorite beach that you like to frequent and refer to it as “your beach”?
Yes there is, and my hands start to shake as we approach it! To call it a “beach” is a stretch, as it is really a cove between two mountains in the Greek Islands. The winds and currents bring what floats into the cove trapping the debris, delivering sea glass in abundance, making it a serious treasure trove for a sea glass collector.
You’ve traveled to many different places and walked many beaches during your travels. Where is your favorite place to collect?
Yes, I have been fortunate to have traveled many places in my life, but none have compared to beauty of the Greek Islands.
Do you have any beaches on your “Bucket list”?
Yes, my travel days are not over. Would love to visit the Amalfi Coast, Italy and Seaham, England but wherever we are we are always in search of sea glass.
Do you have a memorable beach-combing experience you can share with us? And what did you find?
One year my husband and I took six weeks and drove from from Los Angeles to Seattle Washington leaving the coast only when we were forced too. Treasure hunting on every beach and cove the whole way. At that time glass beach in California was not well known, so as you can imagine we were thrilled when we happened upon it, and my husband found a gorgeous diamond. I thought about the poor woman that lost it…..
Aside from collecting and aside from your expert experiences, what are some of your other interests and hobbies?
Living in the Florida Keys has allowed me to acquire an amazing collection of orchids and other unusual plants that grow all year long, back to my floral designing days, I just love being surrounded by flowers. Sailing is a large part of our lives, nothing gives you the freedom and serenity of floating through the ocean…….
Christeena H. Minopetros will feature a lecture on Greek Sea Glass on Saturday at 3pm titled, “Greece and Her Islands, A Sea Glass Lover’s Dream” at the North American Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland on August, 29th – 30th.