Tuesday, September 20, 2016

October is Family History Month (Again)

Welcome back. I just returned from a week in West Virginia for work related training. It is always nice to get up there because it is cooler and they have topography. Here in Florida it is hot, humid and flat. While I was there I worked on adding another 200+ graves to BillionGraves. I try to add cemeteries when I travel. You might want to consider a random cemetery trip the next time you are on the road.

Now that I am back I have a bunch of projects to work on, least of which is the burned out compressor in our AC unit. But back to genealogy where I am organizing a conference for March, preparing my talks for several upcoming conferences, helping to organize a genealogy society in Second Life, starting a Facebook Group for our local Family History Center, and much more. With October being Family History Month, I hope to get a few more projects completed and hope to be posting a couple more articles to my blog (if all works out).

Here are some suggestions on what you can do in October to celebrate Family History Month:

  • Register for RootsTech 2017. Did you know that RootsTech registration is now open? RootsTech will be held February 8-11, 2017 in Salt Lake City. They have reduced early bird rates of $159 for the conference pass, $189 for the RootsTech + Innovators Summit pass, $69 for the Getting Started pass (Thursday-Saturday), one day passes for $49, and free Family Discovery Day passes for Saturday. This is an incredible conference and I plan on being there again in 2017.
  • Join in on a free live genealogy webinar conference. BCG will be hosting a day of free webinars on October 7 (9am - 5pm Mountain Time). Speakers will include Ann Staley, Judy Russell, Pamela Boyer Sawyer, Elizabeth Shown Mills, Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, and David McDonald. For more information click here
  • Do some sourcing. WikiTree is hosting a Source-a-thon on October 1-3. The purpose of the Source-a-thon is to focus on the trees that have been contributed without sources. Participants will be eligible for prizes during hourly random drawings. Currently, the prizes include annual subscriptions to MyHeritage, FindMyPast, Ancestry, Fold3, Newspapers.com, and GenealogyBank; DNA kits from FTDNA; subscriptions to online courses; books, magazines, gift certificates, t-shirts; a 4-day pass to RootsTech 2017, and many other items. WikiTree is a free community based family tree which offers you the ability to write wiki page profiles for each person in your tree. Register, get a number (I am #354) and join with the other Sourcerers for a fun weekend of random genealogy. For more information on this event, and to register, click here.
  • Record a cemetery. Find-a-grave is hosting their Find A Grave Community Days on October 7-9. Join Findagrave.com in helping to preserve your local cemetery information. Use their mobile app to record the headstones in your local cemetery, post stories to your social media sites, or join with a scheduled meetup. More information on this event can be found by clicking here
  • Win a vacation. Geneabloggers is sponsoring a free 7-night stay at Crystal Inn Hotel & Suites in Salt Lake City. Imagine winning a full week in Salt Lake to do your research and see the sights of the city. I love visiting Salt Lake but every time I have gone it has been in February. The registration is free, no purchase required. All registrations must be received by 2:00 am CDT, September 26, 2016, For more information click here
  • Join a Virtual Genealogy Society. We are starting an online genealogy society called the Second Life Virtual Genealogy Society (SLVGS) in Second Life. Second Life is a virtual world with free basic subscription fees. The SLVGS is meeting monthly with our next meeting on Sunday, September 25, at 8:30 pm Eastern Time (6:30 pm Mountain Time). We meet at the Just Genealogy fire pit. For more information about the organization, click here
  • Do your DNA. Have you thought about adding your DNA to one of the many sites out there? DNA can be a powerful tool in finding your cousins. With Ancestry.com's DNA kit you can see how you are related to the matches as well as seeing your ethnicity results. And you might just get included in the next season of BYU's Relative Race.  Use this link to get 10% off your DNA kit from Ancestry.com. 
  • Find out something new. If none of those things interest you, you could just spend some extra time getting to know your ancestors through additional research. FamilySearch's mobile Memories app now allows you to record an interview with your relatives. Use this app to record a conversation or scan your family's photo albums and then upload the information to FamilySearch.org. For more information on the Memories app click here.

With all of these ideas you won't have any time to do the other things around the house (cleaning, dishes, cooking, etc). Just tell your family you are celebrating Family History Month and if they get hungry give them the phone number for Pizza Hut. Have fun celebrating!

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