Background and History of the NERGC Conference
The Thirteenth New England Regional Genealogical Conference (NERGC) (www.nergc.org) will be in Providence, Rhode Island, from Thursday, April 16 through Sunday, April 19, 2015. There will be pre-conference activities (Technology, Teacher and Librarian Days, as well as tours) on Wednesday, April 15.
The NERGC conference is held in the Northeast every two years. It is the largest genealogy conference regularly held in this area. NERGC has a significant history, and its attendance figures show consistent growth. The conference has developed a national reputation. Attendees, speakers, and bloggers have very high opinions of its quality and actively recommend it. The conference attracts attendees principally from New England and New York, but 15 percent of registrants live outside the Northeast. For forty percent of the attendees, NERGC is their first conference. Seventy percent fill out the attendee surveys and routinely report very high levels of satisfaction with the conference, and state that they plan to return again.
The Conference will be in the Rhode Island Convention Center. Many people will remember that facility from the Joint NGS/NERGC conference in 2000. It is a modern and attractive space, favorable to exhibitors and attendees (www.riconvention.com). The conference hotels will be the Providence Biltmore (www.providencebiltmore.com) and the Providence Courtyard by Marriott (www.marriott.com). Restaurants and a large mall are within walking distance of the Convention Center. Public transportation and parking are both conveniently placed. Please look at our website (www.nergc.org) for full information.
We are very excited about using the space again, and the options it will give us. In past conferences, we have been limited by the size of the facility. That will no longer be an issue. We are working on several special options to encourage conference attendees and guests to make more active use of the Exhibit Hall. We think you will be very pleased.
We are pleased to announce that our nationally recognized speakers for this conference will include Judy Russell, the “Legal Genealogist”, and Lisa Louise Cooke, Genealogy Gems. They are both prominent bloggers and speakers. We anticipate that attendance will exceed last year's registration of over 870 enthusiastic genealogists. Be sure to check out our web page at www.nergc.org, and blog at http://nergc.blogspot.com/ for more information about the conference as it becomes available.
Booths in the Exhibit Hall cost $170 for the first booth, and $120 for all additional booths. The booth space may be configured in accordance with the needs of the exhibitor. Utilities (ex. electricity, internet, telephone, etc.) are available at an additional cost. The Exhibit Hall will be open to vendors for set-up during the day on Thursday, April 16 from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Vehicles will be able to pull into the loading area at the rear of the Exhibit Hall, and unload directly. Only large exhibits that require staff assistance (ex. a forklift) to move items will have to hire Convention Center employees. The Hall will open to attendees and guests from 5:15 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Thursday, and will be free to the public, in addition to conference attendees, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Friday, and 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Saturday.
The $170 cost for Non-NERGC organizations entitles you to a single 10 x 10 foot booth set with an 8 ft high back wall, 3 foot high side rails, one 8 foot skirted table, two folding chairs, one wastebasket with liner, one 7 x 44 inch Exhibitor ID sign with booth number, and one full-conference registration. If you need more space, additional 10 x 10 foot booths are available for $120.00 per booth space. Every two additional booths purchased will come with a full-conference registration.
As in the past, our conferences are planned to be exhibitor-friendly. The generous unopposed exhibitor time between lectures is one of the reasons many vendors experience more success at a NERGC conference than at national events. We feature these special benefits:
|• One full-conference registration for your initial booth and one additional full-conference registration for each additional two booths. The full-conference registration will be made in the name of the Exhibiting organization, and any member of the Exhibitor team may use it. (Note that meals are not included. Watch our web page and E-zine for information on ordering meals).|
|• Unopposed Exhibitor times: Generous time slots with no lectures or other events conflicting with exhibition time. No other events are scheduled during Thursday night's Grand Opening of the Exhibit Hall.||• One half hour between lectures: Allows our attendees more casual time to get from one lecture to another, while also allowing more time to visit exhibitors. The lectures will be on the floor above the Exhibit Hall. There are escalators and elevators between floors.|
|• Two-hour lunch breaks: Allows still more time for product discussion and sales.|
|• Exhibit Hall is open to the general public: Free access to the general public to be advertised for increased sales.|
|• Lecture area in the Exhibit Hall: There will be a curtained area at the rear of the Exhibit Hall for additional specialized lectures sponsored by Exhibitors. These lectures will be either 50 or 25 minutes long, and may be a general genealogy topic or very specific to the sponsoring organization. These lectures will be additional to the conference lectures, and free to anyone who comes to the Exhibit Hall. It will be another attraction for conference attendees and visitors. Proposals for Exhibit Hall presentations should be sent to the Exhibit Hall Chair (firstname.lastname@example.org).|
|• Concession Area: There will be a food and drink concession area in the rear of the Exhibit Hall.|
|• Exhibit Area: A space is allocated in the middle of the Hall for exhibits and special events.||• Optional: Please consider showcasing your booth by providing door prizes. NERGC provides tickets to conference attendees in the registration packets with a list of participating vendors and their respective prizes. Attendees who are interested in your prize will place their door prize tickets in a container at your Exhibit Booth. Make sure you bring an interesting container with you. Drawings take place at preset times during Friday and Saturday. Winners names are posted and winners are asked to collect their prize from you. Should a winner be unable to collect their prize, vendors are asked to forward to prize to the winner.|
Exhibitor Space Reservations and Assignment
With all these exciting opportunities to spotlight your organization, it's important to reserve your space early. Exhibitor space will be assigned first to NERGC Participating Societies and exhibitors who have been involved in previous NERGC conferences who submit their applications by the 30 June 2014 early registration deadline. However, all Exhibitors with a focus on genealogy and history are welcome to participate and may submit their application at any time.
There is an additional $25 charge for any registration postmarked after 31 December 2014. We urge you to make your selection and to return the signed Exhibitor's Application Form, the signed Exhibitor’s Agreement, and your check as soon as possible to get the best possible location for your booth. We will actively with all of our vendors to ensure that their space requests are met.
The Exhibitor’s Application, Exhibitor’s Agreement, and the Floor Plan are also on this site.
Questions? Contact information for the Exhibit Hall:
Mary Ellen Grogan, Exhibit Hall Co-Chair
Sharon Sergeant, Exhibit Hall Co-Chair