Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Calling All Snowbirds!

Have you been in Florida for two months and are just so tired of laying on the beach all day? Can't stand one more sunset cocktail party by the pool? Been to all the Flea Markets? All the Outlet Malls?

Hello! There are a lot of genealogical societies in Florida. Think about it. Where else can you find a bunch of people from all over the United States with time on their hands. The greatest thing about these societies is that although they have people who are researching the local history, they also attract people from other parts of the country and all over the world who have information to share. It is like one huge genealogy melting pot.

I have found that most people who set off on their winter vacation down I-75 don't think sun, sand, sunset, and family research. We usually figure that the summer months are the time to plan a research trip to Virginia or Indiana. That's true, but did you every think that a lot of your long lost family members might be vacationing in Florida in the condo a couple of blocks away.

This is a small sample of what is available in a state where most visitors don't "think" genealogy:

The Villages (near Ocala, Florida) - They have monthly meetings plus special interest groups. You can attend these activities as a guest. 

Florida State Genealogical Society Their website will give you a list of Florida genealogical societies by county.

Lee Count Genealogical Society The Fort Myers area draws a lot of mid-western retirees. If you are from Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, or Michigan you have a good chance of running into people you knew in high school. Their meetings are open to snowbirds. Be sure to check out this website if you will be hitting the beaches of southwest Florida.

Also, Florida history is quite interesting and there are a lot of books at the local libraries about "old Florida",crackers, Micanopy, the Keys and the Everglades. Many of the libraries have temporary cards for snowbirds. The Sunshine State is much more than high rise condos and t-shirt shops.

By the way the weather up north is still cold so stay another week or so, go pick up a book on old Florida, stretch out by the pool and discover the "other Florida"


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