RootsTech Connect 2021 to be a free, virtual conference for a worldwide audience

FamilySearch has announced that a free, virtual RootsTech will be held in late February — catering to a worldwide audience with dozens of classes in multiple languages. 

The RootsTech 2021 conference previously planned for Feb. 3-6, 2021, in Salt Lake City, Utah, will now be held Feb. 25-27, 2021, and called “RootsTech Connect 2021.” RootsTech is the world’s largest genealogy and technology conference of its kind.

“The pandemic is giving us the opportunity to bring RootsTech to a broader audience worldwide,” said FamilySearch International CEO Steve Rockwood in a Sept. 1 press release. “A virtual event also allows us to expand our planning to truly make this a global celebration of family and connection.” 

Presenters will teach from several international locations. In addition to classes, the online event will feature keynote speakers and a virtual expo hall. Live chats and question and answer sessions will allow attendees to interact with presents, exhibitors and other attendees. 

A promotional video for RootsTech Connect 2021 titled “One makes all the difference” accompanied the FamilySearch announcement. The video features voices from around the world and highlights the global story of humanity.

“We will celebrate cultures and traditions from around the world, with activities that the audience can participate in from home — such as homeland cooking demonstrations, storytelling and music performances,” Rockwood said.

Both livestream and on-demand content will be offered to accommodate participants’ time zones. Sessions will be available to watch on-demand after the event concludes, according to the release.

Registration for RootsTech Connect 2021 is now open at RootsTech.org.

RootsTech celebrated its 10th year in February 2020. Since its first conference in 2011, RootsTech in Salt Lake City grew from 3,000 participants to an estimated 32,000 in 2020. About 10,000 people attended RootsTech London in October 2019.

FamilySearch announced in March that RootsTech London planned for Nov. 5-7 will be postponed until fall 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

In Tuesday’s announcement, RootsTech organizers said they hope participants can gather in-person again in the future, but they anticipate the RootsTech Connect virtual opportunity will become a regular addition to the conference.