By Tyler S. Stahle of FamilySearch.org
RootsTech 2017 is just around the corner. With more than 30,000 people expected to make the trek to Salt Lake City and the Salt Palace Convention Center, RootsTech has quickly grown to become one of the largest and most recognizable genealogy conferences in the world.
“RootsTech is Disneyland for anybody who loves photos and stories,” said popular blogger Stacy Julian at the 2016 conference.
In a blog post that was published a few weeks ago, we examined seven reasons that make RootsTech 2017 a can’t-miss event. Today, we’re adding to that list. Here are five more reasons you won’t want to skip out on RootsTech 2017:
1. World-Class EntertainmentRootsTech is more than keynote sessions and classes. The opening event for the 2017 conference will feature the music and stories of the Rodgers and Hammerstein legacy. The performance, which will held at the Conference Center at Temple Square on Thursday, February 9 from 8:00 to 9:00 p.m., will feature the world-renowned Mormon Tabernacle Choir and special guest soloist Dallyn Vail Bayles. In addition, Oscar Andy Hammerstein III will narrate and share memories of Rogers and Hammerstein at this event. This is a free event for all RootsTech attendees.
2. The Family History LibraryLocated a block north of the Salt Palace Convention Center, the Family History Library offers a host of records, genealogical publications, documents, and research guides from more than 100 countries. Bring your brick walls and unsolvable genealogy dilemmas, and spend some time with experienced genealogists who are willing to help you find that missing ancestor.
The library will be offering extended hours during RootsTech, which you can view here.
3. Innovator ShowdownThis event has quickly become one of the most popular attractions at RootsTech. The Innovator Showdown is a Shark-Tank-like competition that gives innovators and inventors an opportunity to present their creative ideas on stage before a panel of judges and industry leaders in front of a live audience. Prizes total $100,000 as well as bragging rights in the rapidly growing, multi-billion-dollar family history industry.
In 2016, TapGenes, a digital tool used to identify the genetic thread that ties families together, took first place in the judges’ choice category and netted $20,000. Coming in at second place in the judges’ choice category was Studio (by Legacy Republic), a technology hardware and software for digitizing hard copy photo albums. Studio took home $14,000.