WEB, non-profit partner for film fest

Geoffrey Leach

On May 2, Whitman College will host The Wild and Scenic Film Festival at Cordiner. Whitman Events Board (WEB) in a partnership with the Blue Mountain Land Trust will be showing eight independent films that are deeply rooted in the environment.

The Wild and Scenic Film Festival is a national film festival that tours across the country. It has a catalogue of 75 films that are mostly independent and are always about environmental activism.

Because Whitman is a smaller venue, it will show 2.5 hours of film, or eight movies in total. These eight movies range from the story of a man traveling the world with his soccer ball to oil fracking in China.

Whitman has partnered with Blue Mountain Land Trust to help support the environment. According to WEB Cinema Director senior Sierra Dickey, this partnership made bringing The Wild and the Scenic Film Festival to Whitman possible.

“Blue Mountain land trust is a local land trust non profit and we’re putting it on with them. Because the school received a grant from Patagonia … part of the stipulations of the grant was to put it on in conjunction with a local non-profit in order to help them raise membership,” said Dickey.

To help protect the environment, Blue Mountain Land Trust purchases easements of land from landowners for conservation. They pay for these easements through grants or the government. Through this method of conservation, land owners still own the land but they no longer have the right to use it.

Blue Mountain Land Trust will benefit from The Wild and Scenic Film Festival by gaining public awareness and a possible profit from ticket sales.

“They’re going to reach audiences that they usually wouldn’t, and it’s a great chance for them to sign up for [their 2015 series] called Learning on the Land,” said Dickey.

This partnership is what The Wild and Scenic Film Festival wants. They have been focusing on growing the grassroots environmental movement for around 15 years.

“If you bring it, you really have to do your part to energize your community around environmental issues,” said Dickey.

Dickey and sophomore Jessica Parker have been planning this for a long time.

“We’ve been planning probably since two or three weeks before Spring Break,” said Dickey.

WEB has done a lot of marketing, and Blue Mountain Land Trust has reached out to a lot of their supporters. Dickey is optimistic that many people will attend the festival.

“We’re hoping to fill at least the bottom part of Cordiner,” said Dickey.

The Wild and Scenic Film Festival runs from 7 to 10:30 pm on Saturday, May 2 in Cordiner Hall.