Saturday, 11 August 2018

Could a Conference BE Any More Fun?

Today was the second and final day of the Celtic Connections Conference in Boston. People were slower to fill the breakfast room this morning. But that didn't lower the din of discussion about all that was learned yesterday, the connections made or the stories being shared. 

I had two talks today so the day went by in a bit of a whirlwind. I started out by attending Kyle Betit's talk on Finding Irish Ancestors in Canadian Records. It was really well done and in the hallway after there was lots of chatter about "I never thought of looking in..." Right after that, it was my turn to present. I spoke on the historical events that led to waves of migration of Scottish Highlanders to the US. 

Then it was lunch time. We were entertained by Sharon Kennedy relaying the tale of the Strike for Bread and Roses. It was brilliantly done. From lunch I was at a book signing along with John Grenham. And before I knew it, it was the last time slot of the day and I was up once again. The crowds had certainly waned and we were a very small intimate group to hear about the wealth of records available for Scottish research if you just Step Away From Your Computer. The genealogy gems in the libraries, archives and family history centres is proof that your Scottish ancestors really are waiting on the shelves for you to discover them. 

The conference concluded with the announcement that no final decision has been made for the location of the 2020 conference, with both Chicago (a clear favourite) and Minnesota being considered and explored. 

The conference wound up with a pub quiz night. And what a fun evening it was. We were divided into teams to answer 5 rounds of questions about all things Celtic. Our team came in third. Not a shabby showing at all. 

 The Celtic Queen

The judges adjudicate

The winning team were the "Undecideds" with Audrey Collins and Donna Moughty. 


Second place went to "Ireland's Best" with John Grenham. 

The final round was a one question, each to their own round. All of the people who had the correct answer were put into the bin and the winning name was drawn from there. YAY ME!! 


Once again, thank you to TIARA and the IGSI and the combined committee for a job well done. Not only did people come together to learn and to connect, as they do with every conference, but in true Celtic fashion, they came together to have fun and enjoy life. As the Scottish saying goes "you're a long time dead". Enjoying the moments and the kinship is the fuel of life and I was so blessed to be with a group of people who were able to do just that. Laughter was abundant over the course of the weekend and is the one thing I will remember most about my time in Boston at the Celtic Connections Conference. 

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