175,000 attend temple open house

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. — The open house at the Newport Beach California Temple was described by the media as the "hottest ticket for an Orange County summer's day excursion" — and free as well.

President Robert E. Greene, second counselor in the temple presidency, said turnout for the open house was outstanding, with a total of 175,165 people attending from July 23 to Aug. 20, 2005, except for Sundays. The temple will be dedicated Aug. 28.

Daily attendance climbed steadily during the last week, topping at 10,076 on the final Saturday.

"We are thrilled with the excitement and interest the open house generated," President Greene said. "We are even more thrilled with the spiritual response indicated by the number of requests for family history kits and referrals."

At the open house, visitors who were interested could receive assistance. Nearly 8,000 requests were received and more are expected as people mail in response cards. Nearly 1,000 missionary referrals were also received and more are expected.

Among those requesting family history information was Michele Marr, religion writer for the Huntington Beach Independent.

"Browsing through the 'Our Family History' guidebook in the reception area after touring the temple stirred up all my wishful thinking about getting to know my own ancestors," she wrote.

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