RootsTech 2019–the giant genealogy conference in Salt Lake City sponsored by Family Search–is just around the corner, February 27 to March 2. Alas, I’m not attending this year. I’ve decided to spend those dollars on a research trip instead.
I’ve attended four RootsTech conferences (2014, 2015, 2017 and 2018) and even spoke at the 2017 conference. I really enjoy RootsTech because of the great keynote speeches and classes and the opportunity to learn about new services and products in the Expo. I also like meeting up with blog readers and doing research at the Family History Library while I’m in Salt Lake.
So, yes, I really like RootsTech, but I admit that it is exhausting. Last year there were some 17,000 attendees and there were some really long lines. I’m not much for crowds, so I have to be sure and schedule down time during the conference.
The folks who organize RootsTech have created a Survival Guide to RootsTech 2019. If you’re going, I encourage you to check it out. Here are a few things you can do now to make the conference easier once you’re there:
- Download the RootsTech app (or update it if it’s already on your phone from a previous year)
- Select the classes you think you’ll want to take
- Watch the Road to RootsTech video series, which shows behind-the-scenes peek at the planning for the event. I admire their transparency. In episode 1 they addressed the complaints about lines at the 2018 conference and how they’re addressing that problem in 2019. (No more badge scanning!)
I’m sure I’ll have serious FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) this year as I look at social media during the conference, but some of the conference will be available to those of us who aren’t there.
- Free Live Stream. Each day of the conference five or six sessions will be streamed live, free of charge. You can view the Streaming Schedule in advance and then on the day just go to rootstech.org to watch.
- This year, they’re offering a Virtual Pass for $129 that gives you access to 18 classes for a full year after the conference, starting 10-15 days after it ends. (If you’re attending RootsTech in person, you can buy the Virtual Pass as an add on to your conference registration for $79.)
If you’re going, I hope you have an amazing time. It sounds like the organizers are working hard to make the conference less overwhelming and less exhausting, which is fantastic.
I’m sorry I won’t get a chance to meet any readers of this blog at RootsTech, but I will be attending the NGS conference May 8 to 11 in St. Charles, Missouri. So perhaps we can meet there!