It’s Time for the NFL Super Bowl! Now What About Your Family History Bowl?

Warning: Participating in family history and genealogy while watching the NFL Super Bowl with your significant other may cause side effects including distraction, interference with relational bonding, and failure to fully enjoy chips, salsa, and guacamole. Research responsibly.

It’s time for the NFL Super Bowl! The winner of the Lombardi trophy will soon be determined on the field. The New England Patriots secured the AFC Championship and the Philadelphia Eagles beat the Minnesota Vikings to win the NFC Championship. Sunday will be the final game of the year—Super Bowl LII!

As the big game approaches, I think of another “big game,” RootsTech, to be held at the Salt Palace Convention Center this month, beginning Wednesday, February 28 through Saturday, March 3, 2018. This year’s headliners includes Brandon StantonScott Hamilton, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and Natalia Lafourcade. Although their keynotes may inspire and motivate us to pursue our heritage, the actual routes we run for our genealogy touchdowns will be as individual as the ancestors we pursue.

To assist us, RootsTech offers approximately 300 sessions from which to choose to customize a plan of attack to avoid fumbles and interceptions when pursuing our family history goals. Whether you attend the conference onsite or virtually you can download the RootsTech app either from the App Store or Google Play. Once you have downloaded the app you will have access to information about each session and any of the accompanying handouts to enhance your training.

So how can RootsTech assist you? How can you make the most of your time at the conference and in Salt Lake City? Here are a couple of suggestions:

Know why you are attending. This may seem like a strange recommendation but it will make all of the difference because everything you do will center on the why. RootsTech is an amazing conference, but it is impossible to see, hear, and do everything. Knowing your why will help you manage the all the possibilities.

Make SMART—Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound— family history and genealogy goals for RootsTech. The more specific you are, the greater the opportunity to achieve your goals during the conference. These goals determine which sessions to choose or if it would be best to skip a session and head to the Expo Hall or Family History Library. The assistance available at RootsTech and the neighboring Family History Library can easily move you closer to a genealogical touchdown, to winning your game, and ultimately to achieving the [insert your ancestral surname here] trophy of your Family History and Genealogy Bowl.

To the players and coaches of the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots who play this year’s Super Bowl, the genealogists and family historians who struggle to find time to play the game (i.e., research), to our ancestors whose lives were rarely blessed more than ours, I close with a quote that I first posted for Super Bowl XLVIII and is known as The Man in the Arena[1]:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Cheering you on in your game to win your Family History and Genealogy Bowl!

1.Roosevelt, Theodore. “Citizenship In A Republic.” Delivered at the Sorbonne, in Paris, France on April 23, 1910. Accessed January 4, 2014. [For a copy of the complete speech in PDF format click here.]

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, and meals 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.

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