Wild & Scenic Film Festival on January 9-12

EACH JANUARY, THE FOOTHILLS HOSTS one of the nation’s premier environmental film festivals. The Wild & Scenic Film Festival, presented by the South Yuba River Citizens League, draws top filmmakers, celebrities, leading activists and world adventurers to Nevada City and Grass Valley.

The 12th annual festival takes place Thurs.-Sun., January 9-12, largely at historic venues in Nevada City, including Miners Foundry Cultural Center and the Nevada Theatre.

Grass Valley is hosting a few more events, thanks to the Festival’s continued growth. Venues include the art-deco-style Del Oro Theatre and the Center for the Arts.

“This year’s theme is empowerment,” says Executive Director Caleb Dardick, adding that speakers and film content largely will relate to the issues of power from a human and energy perspective.

Nationally known speakers include Tim de Christopher, the climate activist known for disrupting a 2008 auction of gas and drilling rights on public lands in Utah. Tim’s story of non-violent civil disobedience is told in the film Bidder 70. Tim met the filmmakers at the Festival in 2009.

Actress Debra Winger also will be a guest.

Festival organizers screen about 350 films and about 100 of them are shown, says Melinda Booth, director of development and Wild & Scenic events at SYRCL.

The Festival will also host workshops, panel discussions and an environmental activist center, where attendees can learn more.

The Festival has become a catalyst for spreading new ideas. In 2011, the theme was “Fresh, Local, Wild,” focusing on the revolution occurring around local food. Now the topic has become mainstream.

“The Festival brings great ideas into one place and has a ripple effect beyond Nevada City and Grass Valley,” says Dardick.
For more information, visit WildandScenicFilmFestival.org

Food, Wine, Art Economics at Festival

The Wild & Scenic Film Festival is an “economic engine” for the region, attracting more than 4,500 people from all over who eat, sleep, drink and enjoy the ample outdoor activities.

Art exhibits, music and wine and beer tasting are part of the mix too, showcasing all the region has to offer. Nevada County Arts sponsors an art exhibit. Nevada City Winery hosts a food and wine gathering, and the ol’ Republic Brewery in Nevada City is bustling with attendees.

All told, the festival has come to epitomize the “new” regional tourism that we write about regularly—one that celebrates our outdoor activities, geo-tourism, and local, food, wine and beer, and art.

Read: Explore the Wild & Scenic Film Festival Selections

(Photos: Dave Preston, DRPphotography.com)

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