Sunday, June 04, 2006

Help Wanted

That's right, these conferences don't just happen, they take hours of time and effort. You probably already knew that, having attended them before. We ask that you please read on...
See How You Can Help!

A couple of hours (or minutes) of your time will help make this conference a success. There are a few holes in our scheduling. Will you take a look and see if you can help us out? Perhaps you are already signed up for a luncheon that doesn't yet have a ticket taker. A few minutes taking tickets and you will have contributed to the conference. Maybe there is a session you plan to attend where a door monitor is needed. You will still get to hear the lecture. Your task will be to guide folks to their seats if need be, and let them know they are in the right room. Take a peek at what the CGC has left, and see if you can help us out.

Wednesday Needs
Registration Desk: Noon-3pm
Volunteer Room: 11am-3pm
Ticket Taker at the ICAPGEN Luncheon
Volunteers are needed in the following sessions:
11am- W105, W107, W109
12:15pm- W112
2:30pm- W114, W117, W119
4pm- W123, W126, W129, W121

Thursday Needs
Registration: 7:15am- Noon (2), Noon - 3pm (2)
Hospitality: 11-2 and 2-5
Ask Me: Many openings
BCG Luncheon T226, Ticket takers
8am T208, T209
9:30am T214, T209
11am T220, T222
12:15pm T226, T228
2:30pm T235, T237
4pm T239, T243, T244, T245, T237

Friday Needs
Registration: 10:45- Noon , Noon-1:30, 1:30-3pm
Volunteer Room: 7:30-9:45am
Hospitality: 7:45am-11am, 11am-2pm, 2pm-5pm
Ask Me: all areas
APG Luncheon F325- Ticket taker
FHL/GSU Luncheon F326- Ticket taker
8am F302, F306, F308, F309
9:30am F310, F311, F306, F309
11am F318
12:15pm F325, F327
2:30pm F329, F311, F332
4pm F337, F338, F332, F341

Saturday Needs
Registration: 7:15am-9am
Ask Me: All areas
Exhibit Support: 11am-2pm, 2pm-4:30pm
Volunteer Room: 2:15-4:15
8am S401, S403, S404, S408, S409
9:30am S410, S411, S412, S413, S414, S415, S409
11am S424, S425
2:30pm S431, S432
4pm S437, S438, S440, S441, S442, S443

To volunteer for one or more of the available slots contact Peg Gleich at the conference or on her cell phone at 608-289-1180. The CGC thanks you! We will be busy Monday arriving at the hotel and making preparations for the conference... the countdown begins.

See you in Chicago!

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Hospitality and Volunteers

The Hospitality Committee of the Chicagoland Genealogical Consortium (CGC), the local host organization, looks forward to welcoming attendees to the NGS 2006 conference and the Chicago area. Hospitality members can be recognized by their neon green, yellow, pink and orange hats.
Keep Reading!

The Hospitality Committee will have an information desk set up near the Exhibitor Hall. Make this your first stop with questions about the conference, local research facilities, restaurants and tourist attractions. These volunteers will have plenty of resources on hand to help answer your questions. The Hyatt’s concierge desk is also ready to help with directions, provide tourist brochures, etc.

In addition to the Hospitality desk, other volunteers will be stationed at key locations throughout the conference area of the hotel to answer questions. If you need help finding the Exhibitor Hall, a luncheon location, the computer labs, or have other questions, look for the volunteers wearing “Ask Me!” buttons.

A message board will be set up near the Exhibitor Hall. Attendees can leave messages about carpooling, arranging outings, buying or selling meal tickets, finding missing friends, or seeking long lost cousins. There will also be a message board in the Volunteer Office.

There are still volunteer opportunities available. Your help would be appreciated no matter what your level of experience at conferences or with volunteering. As an added incentive, volunteers will be entered in daily drawings for cash awards and other prizes.

To volunteer call Peggy Gleich, 608-289-1180 (cell) or contact her at the conference.

The members of the CGC and the many volunteers are eagerly awaiting your arrival. We are sure it will be a great conference!

Chicago Museums Update

Two of Chicago’s favorite destinations are having free admission days the week of NGS 2006, and a third is offering free evenings!
Read About the Museums

Shedd Aquarium - Discount Week: June 4th - 9th
Shedd Aquarium, located on the shores of Lake Michigan at Chicago’s Museum Campus is the world's largest indoor aquarium. During this discount week, general admission is free, and admission to both the Oceanarium and Wild Reef is available for an additional fee. Favorite exhibits at Shedd Aquarium include:

The Oceanarium - Follow the call of the whales through a spruce and cedar rain forest to the water’s edge. Dolphins leap and splash in the harbor while playful otters tumble in a nearby cove. Colorful sea stars cling to rocks in tidal pools. And the beluga whales chirp a welcome.

Lizards and the Komodo King - In this exhibit, guests can explore the world of lizards and learn through several interactive features, including a texture-rubbing station. They can even listen to recordings of geckos barking. This visual exhibit will connect you to more than 25 lizard species, including the crocodile monitor – the world’s longest lizard – the bearded dragon, green tree monitor, caiman lizards, shield-tail agamas and much more. The highlight of Lizards and the Komodo King is certainly Faust, the Komodo dragon. Shedd guests will come face to face with all 8 feet and 120 pounds of him. With his forked tongue, unbelievable size, and ability to take down water buffalo, Faust will show guests why the Komodo is a ferocious predator. The highly visual exhibit will be a feast for the eyes, with larger-than-life images, spectacular video of lizard behavior, and dozens of lizards on display!

For more information, please call 312-939-2438 or visit Advance tickets are recommended and are on sale through Ticketmaster at 312-559-0200 or

Museum of Science and Industry - Discount Week: June 4th - 9th
General admission will be free on these days. Visitor favorites include a coal mine exhibit, Colleen Moore’s Fairy Castle and a real U-505 submarine. Current exhibits include Leonardo da Vinci: Man, Inventor, Genius, and opening June 9, Frogs: A Chorus of Color. Some exhibits require the purchase of special tickets, in addition to the general admission. For details, contact the museum's call center at (773) 684-1414 or see the museum’s website:

Art Institute – Free Evenings
The Art Institute of Chicago has announced new summer and free hours. As of June 3, the galleries will be open Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays until 5:00 p.m. Admission is free on Thursday and Friday evenings from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m., featuring live music and museum tours at 5:30 and 7:00 p.m. Current Exhibitions include: Honoring Heroes in History: Illustrations from the Coretta Scott King Award Books, 2001-2005, Great American Drawings, The Concerned Photographer, Casas Grandes and the Ceramic Art of the Ancient Southwest. For further information, phone 312-443-3600 or see:

Field Museum - No summer discount days.
The Field Museum is located on Chicago’s Museum Campus. It was founded to house the biological and anthropological collections assembled for the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893. These objects form the core of the Museum's collections which have grown to more than twenty million specimens.

General Admission entitles you to entry into the Museum, which includes SUE (the biggest T. rex skeleton ever found,) Evolving Planet (which requires a separate timed-entry ticket) and Inside Ancient Egypt as well as exhibitions on many different cultures, mammals, birds, gems, minerals, and plants! Temporary exhibits currently open include:

Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs, which includes more than 130 priceless artifacts, including treasures from the tomb of the celebrated “boy king” Tutankhamun. All the artifacts in the exhibition are 3,300 to 3,500 years old.

From Fins to Feet. This exhibit features a 375 million year old fossil fish known as Tiktaalik, a “missing link” in the story of how fishes evolved into land-living animals.

The Auschwitz Album: The Story of a Transport. This is an exhibit of black-and-white photographs taken by Nazi S.S. officers of the arrival and imprisonment of Hungarian Jews in the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.

Some exhibits may be in high demand and/or require the purchase of tickets in addition to the price of general admission. For information, see or call 312-922-9410.

Adler Planetarium – No summer discount days.
The Adler Planetarium, located at Chicago’s Museum Campus, is home to more than 35,000 square feet of exhibits, including scale models of the Solar System, ancient astronomical instruments, and interactive adventures. Currently running shows include:

Stars of the Pharaohs, a unique look into the grandeur of ancient Egypt on a giant 360-degree dome screen that is 55-wide and three stories tall.

TimeSpace...Time Travel Only at the Adler, a new show that turns the Adler's StarRider theater into a time machine! See and experience the Big Bang, the Doom of the Dinosaurs, the sudden appearance of Halley's Comet in the Yucatán Sky, Apollo 11's moonlanding and man's first steps on the moon, and a leap into the future to 3001.

Egyptian Nights: Secrets of the Sky Gods. Journey back more than 5000 years to see the sky as the ancient Egyptians did from the banks of the Nile River. Learn about how ancient Egyptians incorporated the sky into their daily lives, civic culture, and spiritual belief system.

For admission prices, show times and other information, phone 312-922-STAR or see

Friday, June 02, 2006

Speaker Spotlight: Cecile Wendt Jensen

Cecile (Ceil) Wendt Jensen was given a family history writing assignment in grade school. She interviewed her father Frank J. Wendt. He took a brown canvas pouch imprinted with F. Missler from the top dresser drawer and removed three small pieces of paper written in German. They were the birth certificates that her great grandfather Franz Wendt and his sons Franz and Adolph used for their passage to America. She was hooked!
Read More About Ceil Wendt Jensen

Her father's untimely death several months later cloaked her family history in a mystique that lingers today. She was determined to continue her research and find out where the documents came from. At that time she was perplexed that the certificates were in German yet the family was Polish. Ceil is now a Certified Genealogist who has documented her ancestry back to the 1600s. She has done on-site research in Poland and now understands how a Polish family once carried documentation written in German.

Arcadia recently published Ceil's book Detroit's Polonia. She is working on two more publications: Detroit's Mt. Elliott Cemetery and Detroit's Mt. Olivet Cemetery. She has a forthcoming book for the Polish Genealogical Society of America, Sot Lat - A Modern Guide to Polish Genealogy. Ceil presents practical examples and suggestions on how to use records, databases and archives to start or advance your genealogical research while dispeling the myth that records were destroyed during the World Wars and that language barriers make European research difficult. She delights in helping researchers find their ancestral villages.

Her NGS lectures include Researching Your Polish Heritage Online and Polish Archives: Behind the Scenes, complete with digital video.

Ceil taught in public schools for 30 years in traditional and electronic art, art history, and social studies. She transitioned to professional genealogy in 1999. Her studio now develops websites, video, CDs, DVDs and databases for genealogists of all ages. For additional information see:

APG Roundtable

The APG Roundtable is an informal discussion meeting that is open to APG members only. It is a great place to network, learn, and share ideas. The topic of this Roundtable is Vive la Difference! What makes the difference? A special look at Ethnic Research. Beverly Rice will moderate. For more information see

The APG Roundtable will be on Tuesday in the Ozark AB room at the hotel. The meeting starts at 7pm. See you there!

Thursday, June 01, 2006

RTA Trip Planner Makes Visiting Chicago A Breeze

This is a repeat but the info will be very helpful for those who want to travel in the city.

Looking for a way to get around Chicago? Try the online RTA Trip Planner.
Read More About the RTA Trip Planner

Just plug in a starting and ending address, cross street, or an already named destination (see the drop down box for the pre-selected locations). If you are staying at the event hotel, use the Rosemont Convention Center choice as your start and/or end point. The Rosemont Convention Center is right across the road from our event hotel. Add approximate times that you would like to travel and the trip planner will give you specific directions to the subway, bus, or train. They also tell the time of the stop and how much it will cost to ride.

The trip planner will take some of the stress out of visiting a new city, and be helpful to you if you want to explore some of Chicago's destinations.