23 March 2013
Free popcorn and chocolates are available in the demo lounge to sustain hard-working family history delegates.
Have you been watching the Rootstech live streamed lectures and wishing you were there? Alec Tritton is lucky enough to attend Rootstech 2013 - found out how he got on.
Rootstech 2013 has to be by far the largest conference I have ever attended with over 6,700 delegates from all over the world and every State in America except Delaware!
I was lucky to attend the first Rootstech in 2011 and this year has to be twice as big and the Expo Hall hugely bigger with over 250 vendors.
So how does this compare with Who Do You Think You Are Live? Well I think of WDYTYAL as an exhibition with some lectures whereas Rootstech is a conference with an expo added. With 250 vendors though and FREE entry (you don't have to be a conference delegate to visit) means there is plenty for anyone and for those who are just curious about family history an opportunity to see what is available. In the expo hall there is a demo theatre area with seating that has to be the best I have ever seen. Sat in a comfy armchair with free popcorn and chocolates, I listened to Lisa Louise Cooke talk about American newspapers online. A pleasant way to spend twenty minutes between lectures and a welcome break from walking the expo hall.
The day started with a 90 minute keynote presentation giving an insight into what this year's Rootstech is all about. The concept of preserving our own stories for our great grandchildren is central to the conference and connecting the generations with the power of story.
After the keynote, the exhibition opened giving delegates an hour to browse before the next session. With 15 lectures to choose from, it can be a little overwhelming but helpfully each one is streamed into a track so that you can avoid any that are not to your taste such as beginners sessions or those developer ones for the really techy!
The day positively flew by and before I knew it, it was time to head over the Leonardo art gallery for the findmypast reception and then back to the Tabernacle for a free concert by the Tabernacle choir specially commissioned for Rootstech delegates.
Alec Tritton is the blogger and a key organiser of the Exodus conference, being organised by the Halsted Trust for September 2013. Themed with lectures and presentations on migration, this exciting 3-day event is a must for your diary if you had ancestors on the move. Find out more details at www.exodus2013.co.uk