Two months from now, the Young Center for Anabaptist & Pietist Studies at Elizabethtown College will host a conference titled “The Amish and their Neighbors”.

The Center periodically hosts conferences on the Amish. The last was in 2019, under the general theme of Amish Health & Well-being. This conference’s theme seems particularly interesting to me as there will be numerous sessions on the Amish population and related topics. While organized under a central theme, these conferences generally still cover a wide range of topics under that theme. This one will have presentations and talks on business, language, health care, adoption, voting, and legal issues, among others.

Here’s the conference website and description from it:

This conference, which is open to the public, will focus on interactions between Amish communities and wider society, including those in areas such as public health, government regulation, business and economic development, charitable work, land use and environmental issues, tourism, and civic involvement.

The conference will provide an opportunity for:

  • examining the dynamic relationship between Amish communities and wider society
  • considering cases of cooperation and conflict in areas such as public health, economic development, child welfare, and civic involvement
  • sharing ideas for enhancing services to Plain communities in culturally sensitive ways
  • understanding the growth of Amish populations
  • discovering resources for understanding Amish culture
  • networking with colleagues

Steven Nolt adds this for anabaptistworld.org:

“The population growth and geographic spread of Amish and other Plain Anabaptist groups make the topics presented and discussed at this conference critically important,” said Steve Nolt, interim director of the Young Center. “Today, there are more Amish living in new places with neighbors who have not previously interacted with Plain people. This development means new relationships are forming, and, in some cases, potential misunderstandings are surfacing.”

Here’s the detailed scheduled, conference brochure, and below, info on rates. Note the early-bird registration discount (by May 1). You’ll find the fullest info at the website.

Full Conference Rates
Includes Thursday dinner, Friday breakfast, lunch, and dinner, Saturday breakfast, and all refreshments and receptions.

Registration by May 1: $260
Registration after May 1: $285

Full-time student, registration by May 1: $155
Full-time student, registration after May 1: $170

Daily Rates (if attending for less than the full conference)
Includes meals and refreshments on the days of attendance.

Thursday, June 2: $105
Friday, June 3: $150
Saturday, June 4: $70

Full-time student: Thursday, June 2: $63
Full-time student: Friday, June 3: $90
Full-time student: Saturday, June 4: $42

Members of Plain communities may register at the student rate.

I’ve enjoyed and learned a lot from several past Young Center Amish conferences I’ve attended. If you’re interested in attending I’d recommend looking further into it, as they aren’t held too often. Online and mail registration info is found at the bottom of the main page.

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