A Workshop on Volcanic Blasts, sponsored by the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth's Interior (IAVCEI) Working Group on Explosive Volcanism and the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Cascade Volcano Observatory, was held at Mount St. Helens, August 13–17, 1984. In spite of its modest title, “workshop,” the meeting was really an international conference. Among its 65 participants were prominent volcanologists from the United States, Italy, New Zealand, Germany, Britain, Martinique, Japan, and even one formerly from Kamchatka, U.S.S.R. The conference was organized in an unusual way, not as a series of meetings with boring reports but as excursions to deposits erupted by Mount St. Helens during 1980. Technical sessions with reports were held at the beginning and end of the workshop. Another innovative feature of the workshop was the combination of volcanology/ petrology with physical and mathematical models of eruptive processes. This reflects a trend in geological sciences today. Authors from the different fields may not always understand each other, but the trend itself is important.