The inaugural “1 Earth, Wild and Scenic Film Festival,” fundraiser, presented by Harmony Health Medical clinic and Family Resource center took over the Yuba College Theater on April 21st, 2018. The festival was open to both the Community and Students of Yuba College in an effort to raise funds to help support Harmony Health’s youth group, ”R Spot.”
The festival kicked off with a thirty minute reception that allowed festival goers a chance to purchase and enjoy some delicious pizza, sweet treats and a little wine and bubbly for those of age, that offered a tasteful addition to such a wonderful event. It was also a chance for people to mix and mingle with fellow attendees and purchase raffle tickets for a chance to enter and win one of many gift baskets that would be raffled off throughout the evening. Among the prizes, a $100 gift card from Poole’s Jewelers, Wine Tasting for four valued at $80, a decadent chocolate gift basket and a gift basket that featured many assorted goodies including, a Sierra Nevada Brewery baseball cap and Cliff bars.
The Western Farm Workers Association and the Yuba College Green Future’s club were also in attendance. Both organizations shared their mission statement and additional information on their organizations to guests and they encouraged people to get involved with either their campus or community through volunteering.
Once the reception concluded, attendees filed into the theater. President of Yuba College G.H. Javaheripour, who also serves on the Board of Directors for Harmony Health, took to the theater stage and introduced Rachel Farrell to the podium. Farrell is both the Founder and CEO of Harmony Health Medical Clinic, where she has spent much of her career giving back to the under-served communities of Marysville and Yuba City. In addition, Harmony Health provides free medical services and support to Yuba College students, all year round. When they are not providing medical services for the under-served members of the community, or family resources for families in need, the Harmony Health Medical Clinic is providing a place of support and education for the youth within the community.
“R spot” is the self-named youth group of Harmony Health that offers experiential learning for youth ages 10-17, such as arts, crafts, organic cooking, gardening, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, educational field trips and much more, and according to Farrell, they have seen many success stories through the “R Spot” youth members. Farrell says “we want to show the youth what’s possible in the world” and “the Wild and Scenic Film Festival on Tour is the only fundraiser that we currently have to help support these activities for the youth group.” She further states in regards to the importance of the festival, “it’s about nature, earth and our responsibility to our environment” and in honor of Earth Day, Farrell felt it was a great event to bring to our community.”
The program for the “Wild and Scenic Film Festival on Tour,” was packed with two and half hours of favorite films that were thoughtfully selected from the original “Wild and Scenic Film Festival,” held in Nevada City, “the largest festival of its kind in the United States.” These film favorites delivered content about nature, communities, wildlife, agriculture, environmental justice and indigenous cultures.
The first film featured was a short, yet brilliant animation called “Our Wonderful Nature: The Common Chameleon.” This animation featured the hilarious and entertaining eating habits of a veiled chameleon that brought the entire audience to laughter. The colors were vivid and the animation was brilliantly realistic. It was a great way to begin the festival and further helped set the tone for what would be a wonderful evening full of breathtaking footage and inspirational stories.
Other memorable films include “Lost in Light” and “Douglas Tompkins: a Wild Legacy.”
“Lost in Light” is a three minute film that uncovers the effects of climate change and light pollution on our beautiful evening skies. According to the program, the photos seen in this film were shot mostly in California and they were absolutely breathtaking.
As pictures appeared on the big screen of what the sky looks like the further away you travel from man made and city light pollution, the stars go from few and hardly visible to many and abundant. Eventually, the stars appear like diamond clusters on a deep blue and violet, satin sky. This film truly captivated the audience for it’s beauty and the realization of what humans are doing to the environment by polluting our view of what might be the most spectacular thing we may ever see in our lifetime. It draws awareness and attention to the impact we have on our environment.
The “Douglas Tompkins: a Wild Legacy” is a 16 minute, short documentary film that explains the Douglas Tompkins legacy. Douglas Tompkins, who was killed in a Kayaking accident in December of 2015, spent the majority of his life becoming a self-made man.
As an entrepreneur, he became the founder of “The North Face” and co-founder of Esprit. Building global brands couldn’t keep Tompkins away from his passion for conservation and wildlife. His journey and legacy is one full of adventure, conservation and entrepreneurial endeavors, followed by commitment, passion and diligence.
Tompkins loved traveling to Chile and Argentina. It was his love for nature, conservation, wildlife, work ethic, commitment and the special place in his heart he had for both Chile and Argentina that would eventually take. Tompkins then sold his share of the Esprit brand and turned all of his attention to the things he loved most, his passion of nature, wildlife and conservation.
Tompkins wife and partner in crime, Kristine McDivitt Tompkins, worked endlessly next to her husband. Always by his side and as partners in both marriage and in conservation, the two made quite the dynamic duo. The film explains how together, they were able to protect 4.75 million acres of land in Patagonia, which is known as a sparsely populated area that is both shared by Argentina and Chile.
In addition, the film explains how duo successfully established 5 new additional, national parks and and how in his wake, Tompkins’ wife, Kristine continues to fulfill his mission, further fulfilling the Tompkins Legacy.
Ending the evening, the audience got a chance to meet the benefactors of the event. The “R Spot” youth group delivered hard-hitting action with a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu demonstration that focused on “Wrist Management.” The kids were amazing and they performed with confidence, pride and strength. It’s certain that the money raised by the fundraiser will be put to good use by providing more opportunities for these kids to continue engaging in activities that give them knowledge, strength, confidence, and skill that will help them become strong and independent young adults.
The “Wild and Scenic Film Festival,” was an amazing event that brought scenic beauty to the big screen with breathtaking footage of the beauty and wonder of landscapes that mother nature has given us.
It brought forth the majestic majesty of the wildlife that require preservation of our environment from man, to thrive vigorously and flourish in their habitats. These films brought to the forefront, awareness and the consequences of the destruction that we have inflicted on our raw and vulnerable environment.
Lastly, the stories told left the audience inspired, informed and wanting to take an active role in the preservation and conservation of our wildlife and environment, after all, “the earth doesn’t belong to us: we belong to the earth.” (Marlee Matlin).
With mother nature vastly, changing and as technology continues to change cinematography, we can’t wait to see what the film festival has to offer next year.