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It is a safe and unique opportunity for the adventure and wilderness-loving community to come together for a shared experience in the dead of winter, he said.
“This unique partnership between Sudbury Indie Cinema and the outdoor adventure leadership program is a slam dunk for community engagement, as well as student learning and leadership,” Little said.
Students Kavan Dobos and Owen Duncan are both on the festival planning committee and after their classes went online due to COVID-19, both said they are thrilled to be on the ground level of a new film festival.
“It’s such a gift that we as a community have an opportunity to get together safely and enjoy some amazing local outdoor films on the big screen,” Dobos said.
Duncan will be judging some of the short film submissions and he is eager to see what local talents will emerge.
“This could very well be the beginning of an annual festival that showcases outdoor cinema made in Sudbury and beyond,” he said.
Lining up the features program is Indie Cinema’s lead programmer Beth Mairs, who is no stranger to the field of outdoor adventure and adventure film-making. Mairs founded Wild Women Expeditions out of Sudbury in 1991. It grew to become the largest outdoor adventure company for women in Canada under her 20-year leadership.
Mairs sold the company in 2010 to pursue adventure filmmaking, before settling into film programming. She is a graduate of the Banff Centre’s adventure filmmakers program.
“In a year where film distribution on the big screen has been so hampered, we feel really proud and privileged to be able to connect adventure filmmakers and film-lovers with each other through SOAR Fest here in Sudbury,” Mairs said.
The schedule is still being finalized; however, some trailers have been added to the Indie Cinema website. For more information, go to sudburyindiecinema.com.