RootsTech genealogy conference will be online only, and free, in 2021

(Francisco Kjolseth | The Salt Lake Tribune) The RootsTech Conference attracts thousands to the Salt Palace Convention Center on Wednesday, Feb. 28, 2018. The 2021 event will be held online only, held Feb. 25-27.

The family history conference RootsTech is canceling its in-person conference in February because of the COVID-19 pandemic and instead will host a free, online-only event.

FamilySearch, the genealogical arm of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, announced Tuesday that the online RootsTech Connect 2021 conference will be Feb. 25-27.

The in-person conference had been slated for the Salt Palace Convention Center in downtown Salt Lake City from Feb. 3 to Feb. 6.

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

Some of the conference’s classes and speakers will be livestreamed. Others will be prerecorded, available for viewing on demand. The livestreamed events also will be recorded for later viewing. Dozens of classes will be offered in multiple languages.

The 2020 edition of RootsTech featured such speakers as civil rights advocate Martin Luther King III and NFL Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith.