The Rock Shop

The Rock Shop
One of the most popular destinations in Thermopolis is a small unassuming store; the Rock Shop. Owned and operated by Ava and Eddy Cole, the Rock Shop has attracted visitors from all over the world and the couple have contributed personally to major museums in the United States, England, Germany and Japan.
It all started in 1969 with their own personal gold rush in the Black Hills. After finding only “flecks and specks”, Ava Cole had discovered a pan full of yellow. She and husband, Eddy, quickly filed their first claim on the spot and soon, it wasn’t only gold they were collecting. Ava kept finding pretty rocks and began bringing them to the local rock shop for identification.
A passion for geology was born – soon followed by a love of paleontology.
They left South Dakota for the Utah desert in their pursuit of these pretty rocks. In 1992, Eddy was driving home from a fossil scouting trip in Montana when their rock adventures took another turn. From the highway, he spotted a familiar formation and realized he had found dinosaurs – in Thermopolis, Wyoming. He eventually moved his family to the area and helped start the Wyoming Dinosaur Center, finding 53 dinosaurs on the ridge he had first seen from the highway.
Fifty years later, Eddy says that they have been “in school” ever since and are still learning all they can about the rocks they collect, polish and sell.
Today, you can find Ava and Eddy six days a week at the Rock Shop. Ava sells a full line of jewelry and Eddy is constantly busy polishing up the stones. None of their products are available on-line and can only be bought in person so be sure to stop by Thermopolis’ “hidden gem”. Bring along your own rocks for identification and see if you can be the first one to “stump the geologist.”