FGS 2011 – A Geneablogger’s Packing List

suitcases

As over 50 members of GeneaBloggers prepare to descend on Springfield, IL next week for the FGS 2011 conference, ever wonder what they’re packing? The list of bloggers keeps growing day-by-day and some of them I’ve never met in person while others I know too well and I might just disavow even knowing them while in Springfield.

So what does a member of GeneaBloggers bring with him or her to what will likely be the second largest genealogy conference in 2011 and the second most connected/tech-oriented conference behind RootsTech? Here’s an idea:

  • Return address labels: a little known door prize trick of conference veterans. Bring your return address labels to affix to door prize entries at each booth.  Saves time spent filling out those pesky forms.  Or print up sheets of labels (include your phone number and email) on your home printer.
  • A GeneaBloggers button: if you’ve attended a conference in the past where there were organized GeneaBloggers events, you probably already have a GeneaBloggers button.  Please bring it if you can – I have a limited number of buttons that I hope to hand out to the “first timers.”
  • A sense of wonder and fun: even if you’ve been to many conferences, I don’t think there is a jaded blogger among us. Being the researchers that we are, there is always a sense of wonder at new products at the vendor booths, a sense of fun in being able to connect in person with a fellow blogger.
  • A reporter’s nose: your blog is a “channel” just like any other media. Your followers who can’t attend FGS 2011 are counting on you to report the latest news, the hot new genealogy product and more. Even letting them know about the speakers and sessions will help entice your readers to attend a genealogy conference on their own.
  • Business cards: get those cards ready to hand out to vendors and others. Tip: print your surnames on the reverse!
  • Your GeneaBloggers beads:   if you’ve received a set of the famed GeneaBloggers beads at past conferences (and yes, they are different at every conference), bring them along! A highly-decorated genealogist is a sight to see!

Finally, even if you can’t remember any or all of the items above, get ready to have a fun week, even if you aren’t attending FGS 2011.  Through the many members of GeneaBloggers in attendance, you’ll get a front row “virtual” seat to a great genealogy conference.

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Disclosure:  I serve as the National Publicity Chair for the FGS 2011 Conference. Please see Disclosure Statements for more information on my material connection with genealogy vendors and organizations.

Photo: Suitcases-1.jpg at WikiMedia Commons used via Creative Commons license.

©2011, Thomas MacEntee

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