Thursday, October 23, 2014

FGS Ambassador: Do As I Say

The Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City will be THE place to be February 11-14, 2015.  The Federation of Genealogical Societies and RootsTech are planning a special event:  2 conferences in 1.  It promises to be the Mac-Daddy of conferences combining methodology and technology for both amateur and professional genealogists.

And I’m going to miss it. 

Chalk it up to poor timing.

Here’s what I’ll be missing:

A chance to Connect
·         With bloggers – It’ll be a regular homecoming, a family reunion of “best friends” who have never met except online; they’ll be wearing their blogger beads, taking selfies, congratulating each other on creating such interesting blogs.  But without me!
·         With societies – Historical and genealogical societies will be sharing exciting projects and programs to inspire the next generation of family historians. 

A chance to Explore
·         New topics – Missionaries and Settlers; Ethnic Groups in the West; Wagon Trains and Railroads.  These are just 3 of the tracks and frankly, I can’t think of one of my ancestors for whom any of these apply but I KNOW from past experience that the strategies or techniques the speakers bring to such topics can be applied to my research too.  Besides, they just sound interesting in their own right.
·         New technology – I always feel at least two steps behind when it comes to technology, so a conference is the perfect place to see what’s new and to see it in practice.
·         Vendors – Book sellers, publishers, genealogy jewelry, genealogy gifts, tombstone cleaner, data backup services, you name it and they will be in the exhibition hall.  It’s the family historian’s candy store!
·         Education opportunities – I have no ambitions to become a professional genealogist, but I do want to improve my skills.  I imagine there will be SOMEONE there promoting SLIG, NIGR, and IGHR.  But what else? 

A chance to Refresh
·         I’ve been to ONE genealogy conference, and even then I missed the first two days.  Yet with the few sessions I attended, I already feel like a better researcher and a more focused blogger.  That’s the power of attending a conference.  Moments of self-doubt, thoughts of “why am I doing this research when my family doesn’t care,” and frustration with the whole genealogy thing magically vanish.  The enthusiasm of like-minded people is truly contagious.

So I hope you’ll “Do as I say, not as I do” and make plans to be in Utah in February for FGS and RootsTech.

© 2014, Wendy Mathias.  All rights reserved.


  1. Wendy, one year we will have to go together!

  2. Wow, thanks for sharing this, it does sound like something worthy of making if possible.

    1. The combination with RootsTech makes it really a once-in-a-lifetime event.

  3. Wendy you are missing one more thing---a chance for us to meet! I am so sad you won't be there in 2015.

    1. Believe me, I started to make that a bullet point.

  4. It does sound like the mega-event of the century! I've been wondering how it all will turn out. Guaranteed to be something for everyone, with a size that huge, plus the combo with RootsTech.

    1. Exactly -- too good to miss because when will there be such an opportunity again?

  5. Sigh...I won't be there either. Maybe someday.

  6. Wendy,

    I want to let you know that your blog post is listed in today's Fab Finds post at

    Have a great weekend!