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Largest Environmental Film Festival in US Comes to Evanston

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A selection of many of the best films from the Wild and Scenic Environmental Film Festival, the largest environmental film festival in the U.S., is coming to the Evanston Ecology Center this Spring. Some of the most significant, Award-winning environmental films of recent history will be shown over two evenings at 7pm on April 13th and May 11th.

The Evanston Environmental Association (EEA), the independent non-profit arm of the Evanston Ecology Center, has signed on to be the exclusive presenter of films from this renowned Festival in the Chicago area. According to EEA President Fred Schneider, “We’re elated to be the exclusive presenter of films from this important film festival. The curators of the Wild and Scenic Film Festival do a phenomenal job at selecting the best films from many categories, including energy and climate change, environmental justice and community activism, outdoor adventure, land and conservation issues. This is our first year as a Festival presenter, and we’re so excited that we’re already making plans to expand it next year!”

Claire Alden, Ecology Center Program Manager, says the Film Festival is inspiring: ”You experience the highs and lows, the challenges and triumphs of people’s relationship with the environment as depicted by some of the best of today’s environmental filmmakers. The Festival has a lasting impact and helps us all to stay focused on the big environmental issues we face every day.”

A rundown of Festival films is in development, but the EEA and Ecology Center team putting the program together have already agreed on a few selections including:
• One Plastic Beach – Captures the lives and art of two California beachcombers who turn washed-up plastic debris from one beach into sculpture, prints, jewelry, and art installations.
• Chasing Water – Photographer Pete McBride follows the path of the depleted and stressed Colorado River, which used to run to the ocean, but hasn’t since 1998.
• Return Flight – Chronicles a team of biologists working for decades to bring the bald eagle back to the Channel Islands, just off the coast of Southern California.
• Yelp – This short film, inspired by Allen Ginsberg’s classic 1956 poem Howl, takes on and lampoons many of our uncontrollable addictions to technology and being ‘connected.’

Seating will be limited so interested movie-goers should register ahead of time with the Ecology Center at 847-448-8256 between 9am and 5pm weekdays. Tickets are $5.00 for each screening, and can be used to receive a discount on any level of EEA membership. Festival attendees who become EEA members will be part of a drawing for gift certificates from L.L. Bean and The North Face. Current EEA members receive free admission.

The Evanston Ecology Center, built in 1974 by a group of local citizens, serves as a focal point for environmental education and volunteerism in the community. Its mission is to offer educational programs to the local community that will foster a greater appreciation, awareness and knowledge of the natural environment. The Evanston Environmental Association is a non-profit organization dedicated to the long-term success of the Evanston Ecology Center and its staff in their efforts to provide quality environmental and sustainability education to children and adults in the surrounding community.

The Wild and Scenic Environmental Film Festival is a production of the South Yuba River Citizen’s League, and receives support from the following national sponsors: Patagonia©, OSPREY©, CLIF Bar & Company©, SIERRA NEVADA BREWING CO.©, and Mother Jones. L.L. Bean and The North Face are local sponsors.
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Contacts: Claire Alden or Beth Cullen at the Evanston Ecology Center, 2024 McCormick Blvd., Evanston, IL 60201, 847-448-8256.

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