Another Arkansas state park visitor has hit it big! A Washington state man on a cross-country journey to create an engagement ring for his future fiancée found a 2.2 carat diamond at Arkansas' famed Crater of Diamonds State Park.

Mix 93.1 logo
Get our free mobile app

According to Arkansas State Parks, 26-year-old Christian Liden set a goal for himself to create an engagement ring for his future wife made of stones he mined himself. After his Crater of Diamonds State Park find, his dream will come true.

Liden told Crater of Diamonds park rangers that he and a friend traveled to the park on May 7.

“We spent about an hour in the field that afternoon and returned early the next morning to mine all day,” Liden said.

Liden didn't find his valued treasure on the first day of their trip. However, by day 3 and after long hours of mining, Liden says he knew the diamond when he spotted it.

“I saw it shining as soon as I turned the screen over and immediately knew it was a diamond," Liden told park officials. "I was shaking so bad, I asked my buddy to grab it out of the gravel for me!”

The diamond had to be taken to the park's Diamond Discovery Center in order to be verified. After processing, it was confirmed that Liden's find was in fact a large, yellow diamond coming in at 2.2 carats.

Liden says that his original plan was to find smaller stones for the engagement ring and to add a center stone later on. Looks like he's totally got that one covered now!

Many park visitors that find diamonds get the opportunity to name them. Liden decided to name his diamond the Washington Sunshine, “because it's got a nice, light yellow color, just like sunlight in Washington.”

The 2.2 carat find is the largest diamond found in the park since last October when 35-year-old Steven McCool cashed in the third-largest diamond found in 2020 at the park with a 4.49-carat canary yellow diamond.

The biggest find at the park was in 1975 where an incredible 16.37-carat white diamond named the "Amarillo Starlight," was found. As of today, 121 diamonds have been registered at Crater of Diamonds State Park in 2021, weighing more than 20 carats.

LOOK: Here are the 25 best places to live in Texas

Stacker compiled a list of the best places to live in Texas using data from Niche. Niche ranks places to live based on a variety of factors including cost of living, schools, health care, recreation, and weather. Cities, suburbs, and towns were included. Listings and images are from

On the list, there's a robust mix of offerings from great schools and nightlife to high walkability and public parks. Some areas have enjoyed rapid growth thanks to new businesses moving to the area, while others offer glimpses into area history with well-preserved architecture and museums. Keep reading to see if your hometown made the list.

LOOK: Here are the 50 best beach towns in America

Every beach town has its share of pluses and minuses, which got us thinking about what makes a beach town the best one to live in. To find out, Stacker consulted data from WalletHub, released June 17, 2020, that compares U.S. beach towns. Ratings are based on six categories: affordability, weather, safety, economy, education and health, and quality of life. The cities ranged in population from 10,000 to 150,000, but they had to have at least one local beach listed on TripAdvisor. Read the full methodology here. From those rankings, we selected the top 50. Readers who live in California and Florida will be unsurprised to learn that many of towns featured here are in one of those two states.

Keep reading to see if your favorite beach town made the cut.


More From Mix 93.1