Surname Series Published on the RootsTech Blog

This past Friday RootsTech began publishing my three-part series about surnames, surname distribution maps, and where to find surname distribution maps online. Since I’ve been a bit preoccupied with spring activities, including a photo op with these cute creatures, I thought I’d share the link to part 1 of the series titled, “What is a Surname?

The Calico Kid

Ole Blue Eyes

Such a good mother to her 3-day old kid.

This Kid Has Attitude!

“Here’s looking at you, kid!”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

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RootsTech 2018: “Connect. Belong.” Another Year in the Books.

Dalton and Caitlin are cousins who live on different continents but converge at RootsTech!

As a genealogy technology conference, RootsTech 2018, with live-streaming, social media interaction, and a global emphasis, delivered once again. The theme was “Connect. Belong.” and from many accounts this is exactly what happened as we close the book on another year.

“Relatives at RootsTech” was a big hit with attendees connecting with many cousins! The success of the app depended on how deeply an attendee was connected to the FamilySearch Family Tree so while some had a plethora of cousins, others had none. A few that thought that they would not find any cousins, found at least one or two. Some messages were sent, some contact information was exchanged, some screen shots were captured for later consideration. “Relatives at RootsTech” was a benefit for those in attendance, but the program upon which it is based, Relatives Around Me, is a relatively new feature on the FamilySearch Family Tree app that you may want to experiment with at your next genealogy event or maybe just at a neighborhood gathering. There is one caveat—the results are only as accurate as the FamilySearch Family Tree.

For those #NotAtRootsTech, I am starting to see posts containing photos of items won by virtual attendees. The #NotAtRootsTech experience may not be the same, but it is the next best thing to being at the conference. For those who missed the live-streamed sessions, they’re now available at RootsTech.org. Other sessions were recorded, but not live-streamed, and are also available.

As I mentioned in a post leading up to RootsTech, attending this conference can be overwhelming. There is so much to hear, see, and do. It is impossible to do it all. Knowing your “why” for attending can make all the difference. It is a strategy that I use each year and it works. I have never been disappointed.

One of my goals this year was to connect with my genealogy community of friends—the ones who share a passion for family history, love to hear the latest ancestral stories, and brainstorm ways to break down brick walls. Many of us know each other online but we’ve never met in person. It can be quite humorous to see someone and remember their handle but not their name. Jenna Mills, a.k.a., @SeekingSurnames, suggested that I wear my trademark as a mask so that I would be easily recognized. I never thought about it before, but it could be fun. Maybe next year. :-)

Since I am the self-proclaimed “Human in Salt Lake City Reporting on RootsTech,” I would like to introduce you to some of those in attendance this year:

What would a genealogy conference be without at tree? Seriously, I met RootsFinder in 2017, but this year I insisted on a photo capturing his roots. Look around on social media and you will find that most photographs cut off his roots. This is totally contrary to the purpose of a conference like RootsTech. :-/

When I caught up with Scott Fisher, of @ExtremeGenes, and Judy Russell, a.k.a., @legalgen, they were discussing their plans for the Innovation Showcase. I may have overheard a word or two about the predictions but I was sworn to secrecy.

I connected with Hilary, a.k.a., @Genemeet, Cheri Hudson Passey, a.k.a., @CarolinaGirlGen, Marie, a.k.a., @histfamilles, and Melanie, a.k.a, @ShamrockGen at the Media Dinner. We welcomed Melanie as a new RootsTech Ambassador this year!

It is great to schedule time to sit and chat. This particular chat included Cheri, @JasonHewlett, who is incredibly entertaining and MC’ed RootsTech, and @LauraLHedgecock. Cheri and Laura are also on the board for the @GeneaBloggersTribe.

I also connected with Angie, a.k.a., @arodesky, and Ruth, a.k.a @PassionateGenea, at the @Living_DNA booth. Living DNA was a platinum sponsor this year with announcements that included an incredible conference price and an upcoming feature, Family Networks, using DNA results, gender, and birthdate to populate the family tree. Angie is a Living DNA U.S. ambassador. Ruth is the Ontario Genealogical Society Conference Program Chair this year. The conference will be held June 1-3, 2018 in Guelph, Ontario.

One of the wonderful aspects of RootsTech is that it attracts family historians from all 50 of the United States as well as 42 countries this year. @JennyAJoyce, from Australia, brought Jaffas to share. Thank you, Jenny! Yum!

Although we’ve had plenty of interaction on Twitter, this was the first time I had the opportunity to meet Jenna, a.k.a., @SeekingSurnames (and a @Chiefs and @Royals fan), and Beth, @BGWylie. Just an FYI, #genchat will be held tonight on Twitter at 8 p.m. MT. Follow the hashtag and @_genchat, too! Join us!

Long over due, I finally connected with my good friend True Lewis, a.k.a., @MyTrueRoots. True is a former U.S. Army Veteran and co-host of @BlackProGen.

Unlike those who blog or who are active on social media, Debbie and Glen serve as writers for FamilySearch. They also double as bouncers for the Media Hub so when I took this photo they had their eye on someone. Glen’s most recent post for the FamilySearch Newsroom is titled, “Quest to Find the Painting of the Ship Brooklyn.”

When I was sitting by Ellen, I had no idea who she was! But then as we began to talk I realized that we were Twitter friends. Meet the Family History Hound! She a “Hound on the Hunt” and she doesn’t want you to “bark up the wrong tree”.

Marian Pierre-Louis attended RootsTech for the first time this year! I know Marian from her blog, Marian’s Roots & Rambles, the fact that she solved Geoff Rasmussen’s “Cracking the Case of Nathan Brown’s Parents” and as a current host of Legacy Family Tree Webinars. It was great to connect!

Michelle, @SoSleuth, and I met back in 2015 when she was an ambassador for the Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference held in Salt Lake City in conjunction with RootsTech. It was great to see her again. Meeting up at conferences is like a family reunion. This year RootsTech was on its way to verifying this simile as fact with “Relatives At RootsTech.” I may not be related to Michelle by DNA, but I claim her as family anyway!

In the final hours of the conference I was wrapping up the conference with these wonderful women: @MichelleGoodrum, Tierra Kellow, a.k.a. @Pressingback, @AmyJohnsonCrow, Lara Diamond, @larasgenealogy, and Kenyatta Berry, @kenyatadb. Although I can name the year that I connected with each of these women, whether an old acquaintance or new, the important fact is that we each belong to the family history and genealogy community. :-)

And, where would we be without the RootsTech team! They work hard each year to put together this conference, striving to improve that which needs improvement. The 2018 statistics are in and there were 17,210 registrations, 111,699 unique live-stream views, 38,288 unique households that watched the live stream, 125 unique countries that watched the live stream, 11,237 tweets using #RootsTech, and over 26,000 Family Discovery Day participants!

Participants could not help but be aware of some of the challenges this team faced this year with the changes and growth, but they’re on it! They’re working toward a better onsite and virtual experience for everyone next year! RootsTech will be held February 27-March 2, 2019 at the Salt Palace Convention Center. Early bird registration will open September 2018. Hope to see you at RootsTech 2019!

FYI: I have identified Twitter handles for many that I mention in this post, but the highlighted handles are linked to their respective blogs or other relevant information.

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services & opportunities to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

Henry Louis Gates, Jr. To Keynote The Saturday General Session At RootsTech

Henry Louis Gates, Jr. will keynote the final General Session at RootsTech today at 8:30 a.m. Gates is the host of the popular PBS series, Finding Your Roots, which highlights the genealogy of 3 guests each themed episode chosen from diverse, but noted, fields and provides with a “Book of Life” of each guest’s family history.

Natalia Lafourcade will also perform “Remember Me” from the movie, Coco, which has been nominated for an Academy Award. In fact, Lafourcade will leave RootsTech to fly to California to perform this song on the stage of the Academy Awards the next day, Sunday, March 4.

Here are the live-streamed sessions for today available at RootsTech.org:

Also today is Family Discovery Day at the Salt Palace Convention Center. This general session, featuring President Dallin H. Oaks and Sister Kristen Oaks, will begin at 1pm MST. Earlier at 11 a.m. popular LDS speaker Hank Smith and entertainer Jason Hewlett will take the stage. Evie Clair, Kenya Clark, and Alex Melecio will perform.

This event is sold out, but it will be live-streamed at lds.org. If you would still like to attend Family Discovery Day, contact me. I am aware of some individuals who will be unable to use their entry bands and I would be happy to leave them at the check-in desk with your name on them.

 

 

 

Here are some highlights from Friday:

There are quite a few conference participants that commute. Roger Flick and his wife met Phyllis and David Walch early in the morning on the platform waiting for FrontRunner.

Dan J. Debenham provided the audience with a sneak peak of Season 3 of Relative Race!

I heard many comments throughout the day that Scott Hamilton’s keynote address is one of the best ever! If you missed it, here it is!

I found these conference participants waiting for the Relative Race session held at 1:30 p.m. Do you know what time it was? 11:45 a.m. The woman in the middle and the woman to the right were waiting since 10:30 a.m. to obtain their chosen seat for this session. Now that’s dedication!

Later in the day I had the opportunity to interview, Dan J. Debenham, host of Relative Race, and Season 3’s Team Green, Jamie Harper and her older sister, Morgan Harper Nichols. More to come, but don’t forget to watch the 90 minute premiere of Relative Race Sunday, March 4th at 7 p.m. MST on BYUtv.

We gathered for an impromptu session of #GenChat, this time LIVE at RootsTech! Seated here are @GenealogyJen, @thesingleleaf, @caitieamanda, @CarolinaGirlGen, @SeekingSurnames, @BGWylie who were thinking of all of you #NotAtRootsTech!

There is so much to see in the Expo Hall and there is still time to come to the Salt Palace Convention Center to participate in this year’s conference. One-day passes are available at check-in. More information can be found here. Expo Hall only classes are not listed, but are available at check-in for $10.

Whatever you’ll be doing today, make it fabulous!

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services & opportunities to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

RootsTech: An Olympic Feat in Family History & Genealogy

For those of you #NotAtRootsTech I thought I’d share with you that I’m hearing from your #RootsTech friends and colleagues that they’re exhausted and we just finished day 2! It reminds me that a 4-day conference is a marathon and that pacing is everything!

Today Scott Hamilton will keynote the General Session. Scott Hamilton is a 1984 Olympic champion winning gold in figure skating. He is also a broadcaster, cancer survivor, and the author of the book, Finish First.

Before Scott speaks, Dan J. Debenham, host of the BYUtv show Relative Race, will surprise us ??? I don’t know. Dan said Tuesday night at the Media Dinner that his is a small part of the General Session.

Afterwards I would recommend that those at RootsTech stop by the Relative Race booth to complete a challenge, take a photo, and then post it to social media with the hashtag #RelativeRace. You will have already won a prize. :-)

Today’s RootsTech live-streaming schedule is as follows:As far as Thursday’s RootsTech activity, here are some of the highlights I captured:

In the photo above is the first photo Brandon Stanton sold to a friend for $300 to have enough cash to move to New York. How much do you think this photo is worth now? Moral of the story: invest in friends and friendship.

David Rencher, Chief Genealogical Officer at FamilySearch, introduced Brandon to some of his ancestors. It is said about his ancestor,

Men of this type are rare in any city and the future of Green Bay will be promoted as a result of the life and work of William Perry Wagner.

It was said of Gilbert Huson,

[He] is a wide-awake young business man, identified with whatever promises to be of the advantage to the community in which he lives. He is well and favorably known …as an honorable and upright man.

After the General Session, RootsTech ambassadors met with Brandon. Here is Cheri Hudson Passey taking a photo that includes Maureen Taylor, Amy Johnson Crow, Caitlyn Gow, Brandon Stanton, Sharn White, Diana Elder, Nicole Dyer, and Amy Archibald.

A photographer was catching Brandon in an off-camera moment, and I captured that moment. :-)

This is a t-shirt by Living DNA. Are you your ancestors’ wildest dreams?

Later in the day I had the opportunity to interview Jason Hewlett with my friends and colleagues Cheri Hudson Passey and Laura Hedgecock. There is more to come about this interview. Until then check out Jason’s site.

Yesterday Jason Hewlett sang “Sherry” and I posted a picture of Cheri on Instagram and Twitter. Today I captured them in a photo together.

RootsTech has a lot to offer. Passes are still available and an exclusive pass to the Expo Hall is available for $10 onsite. With all that RootsTech has to offer, it would be impossible to see, hear, and do it all! Come to the Salt Palace Convention Center and see for yourself!

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services & opportunities to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

Human in Salt Lake City Reporting From RootsTech 2018

Whether you are at RootsTech or NotAtRootsTech, today is a great day to hear from Brandon Stanton, founder of Humans of New York! He’s been on the road for about 6 weeks and Jen Allen reported that when he arrived in Salt Lake City the team was given a “do not disturb sign” hopefully to get some sleep.  After the first day of RootsTech, I am sure everyone who attended knows the feeling! It was a delightful yet full day of family history opportunities.

Here is the live-stream schedule for Thursday:Note that there are “RootsTech Rewind” sessions throughout the day: Buddy “Cake Boss” Valastro, LeVar Burton, and A.J. Jacobs. Who can forget LeVar Burton’s powerful keynote that only recently became available online? Although A.J. Jacobs book, It’s All Relative: Adventures Up and Down the World’s Family Tree was released last Fall, A.J. is not here at RootsTech this year. We will miss him, Julie and their sons.

If you are #NotAtRootsTech, we hope that you are following along on Twitter. It is a challenge to keep up with the avalanche of tweets coming through about the conference, but it can be informative and fun. I still haven’t found my match for AncestryDNA’s RootsTech connect adventure.

Since I am a human in Salt Lake City reporting on the RootsTech conference, and I need sleep as well, here are some highlights of Day 1:

The “Access & Preservation” session offered a continental breakfast—a welcomed surprise!

Lunchtime at #RootsTech *after* the crowds have cleared!

Okay, the spelling is different but Jason Hewlett is singing “Sherry,” as recorded by Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons, as his opening number at the #RootsTech General Session. #NotAtRootsTech? This is @CarolinaGirlGen, “Cheri” Hudson Passey! Spelling doesn’t count in genealogy, right?

Steve Rockwood, CEO of FamilySearch International, gave a touching keynote that I would like to address more completely in an individual post. In the interest of time I will share just a couple of quotes;

When we connect and belong, we treat each other differently.

We must gather and connect records before it’s too late—too late for the records themselves and before its’s too late for the people on those records.”

David Nicholson and Hannah Morden of Living DNA announced some exciting news about their 3-1 ancestry kit—Family Networks! Also, the kit is available at the never-before-seen price of $49 for the next 4 days at the conference! Although I interviewed Hannah at the Media Hub, I could not get near the booth to purchase a kit, only to snap this photo. :-/

There is so much more happening at RootsTech! DNA Painter won the $50K DNA Technology Contest. More about that later. But, now it’s time to head to the conference for another full day at RootsTech!

The opportunity to attend RootsTech is still available. Hope to see you there!

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services & opportunities to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

It’s A New Day For RootsTech!

RootsTech now begins on Wednesday! As the conference evolves, RootsTech continues to expand its offerings to the #NotAtRootsTech audience, including 5 live-streamed sessions today (up from 3 sessions last year) and an opportunity to participate via Twitter with the hashtag #NotAtRootsTech with a chance to win #RootsTech prizes! After looking over the sessions to be live-streamed, it was so tempting to stay home rather than make the trip to Salt Lake City … lol :-) Here’s Wednesday’s live-streaming schedule found at RootsTech.org:Is anyone with me on staying home this year? It looks like a great lineup!

Okay, Okay, I have no excuse for *not* being there. Besides the plethora of sessions offered, the Expo Hall has expanded and the highlight of any conference is seeing old friends and meeting new ones! This year is especially fun as I connect with the Twitter crowd. If you haven’t joined us for #genchat, #genchatDNA or #AncestryHour check out these hashtags on Twitter and join the fun!

The Media Banquet was held last night and Jen Allen shared some statistics about this year’s conference:

  • all 50 of the United States will be represented
  • 42 countries will be represented
  • as of Tuesday, 14, 200 passes have been sold
  • 197 exhibitors will be on display in the Expo Hall with 60 new companies & 65 companies that have exhibited at RootsTech four or more years

Even if you have been to RootsTech before, there is plenty new to see! Those at the banquet got a sneak peak of the conference theme, “Connect.Belong.” Dan J. Debenham shared a preview of Relative Race. As I mentioned in my last post, “I know of no better team to connect with or belong to on television than Relative Race!” Nevertheless, the best part of the evening was seeing old friends, connecting with social media friends, and meeting new people destined to become friends. Relationships are what family history and genealogy are all about!

As far as those who will be at #RootsTech, one session that I’d like to point out is a 3-hour session titled, Access & Preservation (RT7953). It will be held in Ballroom I of the Salt Palace Convention Center beginning at 9:30 a.m. Who will be speaking?

Welcome & Introduction—David Rencher, CGO, Family Search International

Keynote—Brewster Kahle, Internet Archives

Digital Preservation Presenters—

Laura Stone, Arizona State Library

Ken Williams, Utah State Archives

Wendy Hanamura, Internet Archives

Internet Archives Record Access Presenters—

Hollis Gentry, Smithsonian

Curt Witcher, Allen County Public Library

Stephen Valentine, FamilySearch International

It’s a mini-conference within the conference! Also, there is no accompanying handout for this session so if you are onsite it will be worth your attendance.

Not quite interested in access and preservation at this time? Do you have other genealogy goals? There are many other sessions from which to choose so download the app via the App Store or Google Play Store and take a look. If you are #NotAtRootsTech you still have the handouts available for many sessions that can provide an overview and allow you to glean some new information that will benefit your family history pursuits. Don’t forget to provide feedback for any session you attend onsite or virtually. This information is important to the RootsTech team in planning next year’s conference!

For those at RootsTech, the Expo Hall will be open from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Interested in DNA testing? I learned this evening that 23and Me is offering their ancestry service for $69 and their ancestry + health test for $99 for conference participants. AncestryDNA is offering their autosomal test for $59. I have not received word yet from the other 3 DNA companies. I just thought I’d let you know if you have decided to use one or more of these services.

Near Salt Lake City and would like to join us? RootsTech passes are still available. Check them out! There is an Expo Hall only pass for $10 at the registration desk after the keynote concludes.

Once again I invited you to follow me on Twitter @thesingleleaf. You may also follow me on Instagram @thesingleleaf.

Have a wonderful day!

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services & opportunities to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

The Relative Race Continues … On BYUtv

Have you heard? Relative Race continues on BYUtv one week from tonight, March 4th at 7 p.m. MST, with a 90-minute premiere and our family could not be more excited!

What is Relative Race?
Once compared to the award-winning television show Amazing Race, Relative Race has become popular in its own right. The show uses DNA to identify and connect each team to a trail of 10 of their living relatives discovered through this process. Each new relative has something to share as the teams race to a final destination for the $50,000 prize. Of course, each team wins by gaining the knowledge and relationships of these new found or confirmed relationships.

Relative Race previewed their show at RootsTech 2016. I had the opportunity at that time to sit down with the Relative Race team and discuss the premise of the show. As Dan J. Debenham outlined the specifics, I was surprised to learn that each couple would stay the night at the home of the new found relative. What Dan did not reveal was that one couple in particular would have a difficult time having Season 1’s Team Red stay the night. When that particular episode debuted, viewers were left asking, what? As an audience we had the opportunity to get to know Team Red through a number of episodes. Our omniscient view left us wondering why. Since I don’t want to spoil it if you haven’t seen Relative Race Season 1, I’ll refrain from expounding. Relative Race is a great show to binge-watch!

On February 8, 2017, Relative Race won the award for Best New Reality Show at the National Cynopsis TV Awards. As Lenzworks, the video company that produces the show, explains on their website, “The Cynopsis Awards is a national competition and is judged by industry professionals including programming executives and media developers.”

By the time Relative Race received this award, Season 2 was set to debut and Relative Race returned to RootsTech to preview the show and meet two of the teams. One of those teams was Team Blue, the couple who had difficulty having their Team Red Season 1 cousins stay in their home. I had the opportunity to talk with Team Blue about that defining moment of Season 1. I met their adorable children. I completely understood why they would prefer to not have strangers stay in their home, but I asked the brazen question—Would Season 2 “redeem” this husband and father?

Relative Race Season 2 also introduced us to Joe of Team Black. His story is compelling and demonstrates the power of DNA to answer questions about family and bring situations to resolution.

Relative Race Season 3 continues the race.  This time Joe from Season 2 was one of the photographers who accompanied a team on their personal journey. This season the teams will begin in Washington D.C. and introduces a new dynamic—different combinations of family members! In the past the teams have always been married couples but this type of race can accommodate other family situations. Seeing such potential, I even tweeted a request during Season 1 to include such family dynamics as parent-child. My request has been granted! Although Season 3 consists two married couples, it also hosts two sisters representing Team Green and a father and son representing Team Blue.

Additionally there have been changes in the direction of the race. Season 1 led teams through 10 stops from San Francisco to New York. Season 2 led teams from Miami to Boston. No one but Relative Race  knows where Season 3 will lead! Nevertheless, here are the teams and their assigned colors:

Team Red—Troy & Nicole Hitt, a married couple from Humble, Texas
Team Green—Jaime Grace Harper & Morgan Harper Nichols, sisters from Los Angles, California
Team Blue—Michael & Dylan Anderson, a father and son team from Concord, North Carolina
Team Black—Rebecca & Johnathon Hoyt, a married couple from McAllen, Texas

One week from tonight Season 3 will debut on BYUtv, but if you want a sneak peek, come to RootsTech on Friday, March 2nd at the Salt Palace Convention Center. Dan J. Debenham will keynote along with 1984 Olympic champion, Scott Hamilton. Later on Friday, at 1:30 p.m., Relative Race will highlight Season 3 in Room 254A with a panel consisting of Dan J. Debenham and Teams Red and Green.

Have a conflict in your schedule? Relative Race will be at booth 734 in the Expo Hall each day and display an interactive Relative Race screen that will be located in the North Foyer from Thursday, March 1st through Saturday, March 3rd.

Whether you find yourself at RootsTech or Not-At-RootsTech, join in watching Season 3 of Relative Race beginning March 4, 2018 at 7 p.m. MST! There are multiple ways to access the show, including the BYUtv app. When you download the app, you’ll always have an episode at your fingertips. You may also “like” Relative Race on Facebook, follow Relative Race on Instagram, and/or follow @RelativeRace on Twitter and when you tweet use the hashtag #RelativeRace. During the Sunday night broadcast of each episode there are a number of us on Twitter. I invite you to follow us, join the conversation, and have some fun! This year’s RootsTech theme is “Connect. Belong.” and I know of no better team to connect with or belong to on television than Relative Race!

About RootsTech

RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services & opportunities to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

 

Have You Heard About “Relatives At RootsTech”?

FamilySearch announced a new venture for this year’s annual RootsTech conference—Relatives at RootsTech. For your information, here is the full announcement:

Thousands of people gather from countries around the world to attend RootsTech, the world’s largest genealogy conference. With so many family history enthusiasts under the same roof, it’s only a matter of time before someone looks around and wonders, “Is anyone here related to me?”

Now they—and you—can find out who’s related by using your phones and the FamilySearch Family Tree mobile app.

Simply open the Family Tree app on your phone, and at the top of the screen, tap the Find Relatives at RootsTech banner. To allow the app to show how you’re related to other conference attendees, tap Yes, Opt In.

Once the app has finished searching, you’ll see a list of RootsTech attendees who are related to you, with their name, photo, and relationship to you. Tap on any person from the list to see more details about how you’re related. You’ll be able to see people on your list right away, but note that it may take up to 20 minutes for you to appear on the lists of other conference attendees.

If you want to send a message, go to the top right corner of the screen, and click the Message button. Then you’ll be able to write a subject line and message to get in touch with your relatives. You can chat about your common ancestors, arrange a time to meet up between classes, or just say hi. It’s up to you!

And as an extra bonus, FamilySearch has a special gift for every RootsTech attendee who meets a distant relative using the app, takes a photo together, and adds it to the wall of the FamilySearch booth in the Expo Hall.

RootsTech is all about making connections with family, and this is a great way to do that. You might have more in common with the person next to you than just your class schedule. Download the Family Tree app now, and find out!

In order to participate, you must register for a free FamilySearch account and uploaded your GEDCOM if you do not have a pedigree on FamilySearch Family Tree. These preparatory steps are best accomplished before you arrive at RootsTech but can be completed onsite. Any questions? Let’s Talk. If not, I look forward to seeing you at RootsTech!

Not at RootsTech? The live-stream schedule has been announced and you can follow the hashtags, #RootsTech and #NotAtRootsTech, on Twitter to enter to win great prizes!

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services & opportunities to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

Connect. Belong. Play. RootsTech :-)

In preparation for RootsTech, the largest genealogy conference in the world, I just have to tell you about a couple of family history games that you’ll want to check out as you stroll the Expo Hall. This year’s RootsTech theme is “Connect. Belong.” and these items are sure to carry this theme back into your home to the enjoyment of your family!

The first game is geared towards young adults as a “getting to know you” game titled, “Did You Know …” Just imagine saying that title with a Minnesota accent! It’s in our family’s DNA. :-) This game comes as a pack of cards with questions covering five different categories: Bon-Appétit, Dating, Nice 2 Know, Adventure, and Pop Culture. The one question that stays with me is, Which do you prefer—Star Wars or Harry Potter?, and in our family we discovered a defector among us … lol :-)

The second game is titled, “Roots & Branches,” formerly called “Your Family Tree—The Game.” It’s a cute tree with roots and branches exposed revealing the path from start to finish. A player rolls the dice and moves the determined spaces. If time is an issue, you can speed up the game by using more dice. There are gophers and squirrels involved in this game, which I love, and here’s why:

When a player lands on a gopher, that player says something about everyone else playing the game. When a player lands on a squirrel, every player says something nice about you!

The game is over after each person crosses the finish point, but the first one to cross receives a larger portion of the family dessert. The game came with a small packet of M&M’s that never made it to the first time we played in our family. [I just don’t know what happened.]

The card categories are: About You, Our Family, Our Ancestors, Nice to Know. I highly recommend that you sort through the cards for those applicable to your family members’ ages and your family situation.

Sample questions from each category include:

About You:

“What sport would you like to eliminate from the world and why? [Definitely not football … lol :-)]

Our Family:

“If your siblings reminded you of animals, which animals would they be and why?” [You can only imagine the responses!]

Our Ancestors:

“What is a story of an ancestor which has strengthened your faith in God?” [Although questions in this category cover many topics, the question I just shared reminded me of a story President Russell M. Nelson told at RootsTech 2017. The story can be found beginning at 15:50.]

Nice to Know:

“What are some good family rules for using the internet?” [Other questions involve safety, preparedness, favorites, traditions, etc.]

Roots & Branches is a board game targeted for ages 4-Adult and can be played with 2-6 Players. My children described the game as a family history “Chutes and Ladders” or “Candy Land.” This game has the potential to become a game board classic!

Here’s just one other idea to use from time to time. The game board can be mounted to a vertical magnetic surface, such as the front of a refrigerator, and played with magnet dots purchased from your local office supply store. Families tend to congregate in the kitchen and these questions can be great for conversation before, during, or after dinner. It doesn’t need to be played all in one sitting. At the end of the week, the family members that complete the path can receive a special treat.

If you have young children, if you like playing games, if you want to pique your family’s interest in their history, these games are for you!

Stop by The Connections Games booth (1647 & 1746 noted on the above map) in the RootsTech Expo Hall February 28 – March 3 during regular hours. Not at RootsTech this year? You can order online at The Connections Games, LLC.

About RootsTech
RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: Doug & Carol Ladle gave me a complimentary copy of each of these games, but the review is written just because family history is my game and I like to play. I also like these games so I recommend them for your consideration. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.

Ready-for-RootsTech Guide to DNA 2.0

Preparation is a key to success. When it comes to RootsTech, the largest genealogy conference in the world, it can make all the difference, especially if you’ve set specific goals you want to achieve at the conference. If one of your goals is to learn more about DNA testing and genetic genealogy, this guide is for you.

Why DNA?

There are three reasons individuals test their DNA for genetic genealogy: 1) to learn ethnicity estimates, 2) to connect with genetic cousins for reunions or for information about their common heritage paper trail, and 3) to discover personal health information. There will be opportunities at this year’s RootsTech conference to learn all you need to make informed decisions for each of these scenarios.

RootsTech will offer over 40 sessions covering genetic genealogy ranging from beginning to advanced, some of which are pre-registration lab classes, to inform and educate participants on this timely topic. The Expo Hall will host five genetic genealogy companies who will have representatives available to answer your questions: 23andMe, AncestryDNA, Family Tree DNA, LivingDNA, and MyHeritage DNA. 23andMe is sponsoring the Demo Theater this year and will host a special presentation, “DNA User Experience Stories” with Angie Bush and Diane Southard on Thursday, March 1, 2018 at noon. Something new this year is the GeneRosity Registry, which is part of Intermountain Healthcare and a major sponsor this year. They seek to accelerate “genetic discoveries for future medical breakthroughs.” If you have already taken a direct-to-consumer DNA test and you are interested in advancing medical science, stop by Booth 2247 in the Expo Hall.

To maximize time at RootsTech, PREPARE NOW!

1. Create a list of your questions. First, write down any DNA questions you have at this point. When you have finished reading this post and its associated links, review your questions to see if you have discovered your answers. If not, organize them and bring them to RootsTech. You will then be prepared to ask these questions in any session where the presenter offers a question-and-answer period, or you can bring your questions to the Expo Hall to have your questions answered by representatives of the different DNA companies. Clear, concise, and thoughtful questions are always easier for the experts to answer.

2. Define your goals. For example, if you purchased a Getting Started pass, there are only 2 sessions that you may attend: “DNA User Experience Stories,” held Thursday at noon in the 23andMe Demo Theater and “Before You Test: DNA Basics You Need To Know” that also will be held on Thursday at 4:30 p.m. in 155B. If you consider yourself technologically advanced, “Update to Third Party Autosomal DNA Analysis Tools” will be offered at 11 a.m. on Thursday. For the beginner and intermediate family historians, there are many sessions spread throughout the 4-day conference. (See the charts, one for each day, listing the DNA sessions at the end of this post.) Pre-registration for DNA lab sessions and sponsored lunches is required. There are still a few spots left in various sessions.

3. Become familiar with the 5 DNA companies represented in the Expo Hall. If you are planning to test your DNA as a result of what you learn at this conference, become familiar with the 5 DNA companies and what DNA tests are offered by each. Also learn about the legal notices for each company, such as their terms of service and privacy policies. Each company’s legal notices are different. Presenters have their own vested interests as employees, affiliates, and business owners and may only cover a portion of relevant material in any given session. Time is limited. Not all companies may be represented in each session you attend. Understanding the legal notices before coming to RootsTech frees you to make informed decisions at the conference. Most, if not all, companies will offer special pricing on their kits at the conference. Many individuals test with more than one company.

A Note About DNA Test Terms and Conditions

As individuals learn more about genetic genealogy, questions arise. Some of them are legal and are best answered by an attorney without a vested interest in the business of genetic genealogy or even within the genealogy community. Opinions vary throughout the genealogy community and beyond. Each company has its own terms of service and opportunities to opt in or opt out of research studies and to allow degrees for sharing your genetic information. One common question is, Who obtains the rights to my genetic information? It is a good question to ask each company you consider testing with because you must be comfortable with their answer.

For example, one company states,

“We do not claim any ownership rights in the DNA samples, the DNA Results and/or the genetic information in the DNA Reports. Any genetic information derived from the DNA samples, the DNA Results and/or appears in the DNA Reports continues to belong to the person from whom the DNA was collected, subject only to the rights granted to MyHeritage in this Agreement. In addition, you understand that by providing DNA samples and/or DNA Results to us, you acquire no rights in any research or commercial products that may be developed by us that may relate to your DNA.

We will, if requested by you, destroy the DNA sample provided by you. To request destruction of your DNA sample, please contact us using the contact details indicated in the “Contact Us” Section below. In addition, you can, at any time, delete your DNA Results and DNA Reports from the Website by using the delete function from the “Manage DNA kits” page on the Website, or request MyHeritage Customer Support to do this for you.

By submitting DNA samples to us and/or DNA Results to the Website, you grant us a royalty-free, world-wide license to use your DNA samples, the DNA Results and the resulting DNA Reports, and any DNA samples and/or DNA Results you submit for any person from whom you obtained legal authorization as described in this Section and the resulting DNA Reports, and to use, host, sublicense and distribute the resulting analysis, to the extent and in the form or context we deem appropriate on or through any media or medium and with any technology or devices now known or hereafter developed or discovered. You hereby release us from any and all claims, liens, demands, actions or suits in connection with the DNA testing, DNA samples, DNA Results and/or DNA Reports, including, without limitation, errors, omissions, claims for defamation, invasion of privacy, right of publicity, emotional distress or economic loss. This section continues even if you stop using the Website or the DNA Services.” (“Terms and Conditions,” myheritage.com, emphasis added).[1]

4. Create a DNA testing plan. Creating a DNA testing plan will provide focus, save you money, and give you the best chance of answering your research questions. Be familiar with each of the three DNA tests used for genealogical purposes, and be confident that the kit you order will answer the family history question you want answered. There are 3 tests offered for genealogical purposes:

Autosomal DNA, atDNA, is the collaborative DNA from all of your ancestors, male and female, that recombined to define you. It is the DNA from which your ethnic origin estimates are derived as far as scientists and others in related fields can currently determine. These estimates are subject to modification as the reference panels on which the results are based are modified. All 5 companies offer this test. Some companies identify matches to the X chromosome. One good question to ask each company is, How many SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) are tested by your company? [2] The more SNPs, the more comprehensive the results. This is the DNA test that assists you in finding living cousin matches with others who have tested.

 Y-DNA is the DNA that defines paternal lineage and is inherited only by males; it is passed down from father to son. It provides positive identification of the biological paternal family and outlines the migration pattern of direct paternal ancestors (from son to father, etc.) as far as science can currently identify. It is defined on the top line of your traditional pedigree chart. It is a male-only test, so females must find a brother, father, brother of their father, or son of a brother to test for this information. Family Tree DNA is the only major company to offer this as an independent test for genealogical purposes. There are also many surname projects administered through Family Tree DNA.

Mitochondrial DNA, mtDNA, is the DNA inherited by all of a mother’s children, but passed on only to the next generation by females. It identifies the maternal migration pattern (from son or daughter to mother, etc.) as far as science can currently identify. It is defined on the bottom line of your traditional pedigree chart. Family Tree DNA is the only major company to offer full sequencing of the mitochondrial genome for genealogical purposes.

DNA results are just another source, like vital records, censuses, probate or land records. They can assist in extracting one’s biological heritage. It is important to note that a DNA test may or may not provide the answer to your question, or it may provide an answer that leaves you or others in your family uncomfortable. Expectations of extending your lineage must be managed. Not all individuals who take a DNA test find generations of ancestors. Many online trees contain misinformation, and DNA testing is not a short cut to obtain a verified pedigree. In addition, an individual must be prepared to accept that an identified living cousin through DNA may not want to have contact or establish a relationship with the one tested.

Not all individuals need DNA testing to answer their family history questions. But, DNA testing offers those who have unanswered questions, such as adoptees, amazing results in extending their biological pedigree. It is a source that relies on the permission of family members to obtain. All people who test must agree to the legal notices, such as terms of service and privacy policy, of the company they select for testing. These policies are different for each company and are best read in an environment conducive to understanding the terms.

Genetic genealogy is an exciting and developing field. It can provide answers to family mysteries. It has brought joy to many and sorrow to a few. It is a topic worth learning about so you can make an educated decision about how DNA testing can potentially help you strengthen your family relationships among the living and add to your family tree.

Not registered for RootsTech? There’s still time. Check out the website.

Appendix:

Disclaimer: The purpose of this article is for information only. The final decision to act upon this information is your own and you take sole responsibility for all outcomes.

[1] MyHeritage. “Terms and Conditions”. (https://www.myheritage.com/FP/Company/popup-terms-conditions.php: accessed February 12, 2018)
[2]“A single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP, pronounced snip) is a DNA sequence variation occurring when a single nucleotide adenine (A), thymine (T), cytosine (C), or guanine (G]) in the genome (or other shared sequence) differs between members of a species or paired chromosomes in an individual.” International Society of Genetic Genealogy. “Single-nucleotide polymorphism”. (http://isogg.org/wiki/Single-nucleotide_polymorphism: accessed February 12, 2018).

About RootsTech

RootsTech, hosted by FamilySearch, is a global conference celebrating families across generations, where people of all ages are inspired to discover and share their memories and connections. This annual event has become the largest of its kind in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants worldwide.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I am designated as an official ambassador to the RootsTech Conference and, as such, I am provided complimentary admission and other services & opportunities to accomplish my duties. Nevertheless, I have been with RootsTech since its inception and with its predecessor for many years as a paid participant. As always, my coverage and opinions are my own and are not affected by my current status. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Copyright © 2018. Lynn Broderick, a.k.a., the Single Leaf. All Rights Reserved.