Live from the 4th Annual Family History Expo, St George UT

The cream of the genealogy world is in St George Utah today for the My Ancestors Found 4th Annual Family History Expo–it was called the Genealogy and Family History Jamboree. Just got too big. So this year it is “The Expo.”

Kip Sperry called it “An exciting place to be–a lot of fun. With a variety of topics delivered by the most popular, nationally recognized speakers, providing something for everyone.”

Every classroom was full to the brim and and some overflowed into the atrium area. The opening session attracted more than 1,000 at 8:00am. The Dixie Center got hundreds of calls every hour and had to bring in reinforcements just to answer calls from prospective attendees who wanted to know if they could still get in.

And tall, strapping pirates of the pedigree roamed the halls, looking for booty and helping old ladies in and out of their classrooms.

A Pirate of the Pedigree poses for the cameraA Pirate of the Pedigree helps with registration(click for larger view)

And buyers rushed into the vendors exhibit hall between classes to register for prizes, collect chocolate candy, gather collectibles from (did you know that is one of the principal purveyors of free, branded, trinkets at the conferenced–from clocks to cell phone covers to stress balls to tote bags to pens?)

And the weather girl and guy gave away two tickets each evening on the 5:30pm and 9:00pm KCSG News, one of the sponsors of the event–contributing to the more than 4,000 avid genealogists who showed up!

If you are not here, you are missing one big, amazing event. When polled, people who came into my booth #203, described their favorite thing about the conference–prizes in every classroom. Vendors got goody bags, speakers got goody bags, VIP’s and volunteers got goody bags–filled with genealogically useful stuff.

The banquet featured Jean Wilcox Hibben, “Come Away With Me,” a musical journey through time examining highlights of American history.

Put 27-28 February 2009 on your 16 month calendar–and PLAN to attend the Family History Expo next year. Get your registration in early, so your place is reserved:

In Memoriam–

  1. James LeVoy Sorenson, 1921-2008. He established Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation ( utilizing DNA plus your pedigree chart to connect familes worldwide. The process is safe, convenient, confidental, and completely free of charge (and to my knowledge, is the only free DNA program).
  2. President Gordon B. Hinckley, 1910-2008. He served the members of the LDS Church for more than 50 years, and during his Presidency the membership of the Church grew 33%–for the first time more members reside outside the United States–speaking more than 80 languages. He launched the Perpetual Education Fund to encourage and support LDS members in Third World countries to graduate from college. Once employed, these graduates repay the fund so that someone else can attend college. And is launching a new recording and data access system for genealogy, with its partner, FamilySearch Indexing. This integrated system is about to revolutionize the way you trace your family tree
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