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      Finders, keepers: is metal detecting worth it?

      A hip replacement kept Soo Hill resident Lynn Richards from golfing as a retirement sport. Now he says he's found something better that gets him exercise and a prize along the way. He's been metal detecting for nearly eight years.

      "Oh, I love it," said Richards. "I get with the guys, we go and we have a good time."

      Those guys are all part of the Yooper Coinshooters, a club that meets once per month and heads to local parks and beaches to find what's buried underground. Richards says he's found some keepers.

      "Last year I found an 1853 large cent," Richards said.

      And that's not all. He also has a collection of silver dimes, Canadian cents, tokens, and even some copper. Those are just some of the many things to find here in the U.P.

      "There's a lot of history buried in the ground," said Dave Myers, owner of Discount Vacuum in Marquette.

      At Discount Vacuum in Marquette, you can find a metal detector, but more money gets you more sophisticated equipment.

      Facebook fan Amanda Stenson Johnson writes, "I bought one for my husband for Christmas. He has just lately started to tinker around with it. I came home the other day and there was the ugliest rock I had ever seen--that was his treasure from his first day using it."

      Myers says don't underestimate those rocks. Some meteorites are rare in quantity but high in value. Around the world, they've been sold for thousands of dollars.

      "There's a special crystalization that's formed in the rock due to the tremendously slow rate of cooling that has to take place in outer space," Myers said. "That crystalization cannot form in our atmosphere."

      Finders, keepers is the motto for the hobby. Parks and beaches are the best places to explore, but be sure to check with city officials on the rules and regulations before you head out. For more information on the Yooper Coinshooters Club, visit their website.