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Backcountry Film Festival spotlights outdoor adventure

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Fundraiser > 10 shorts will be shown to raise money for various organizations, including PEEC

For the third year in a row, the Winter Wildlands Alliance in coordination with Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC) and the Reel Deal Theater will bring 10 independent films to New Mexico, aimed at inspiring the spirit of outdoor adventure during the third annual Backcountry Film Festival.
The films will be shown during the festival from 7-9 p.m. Jan. 30 at the Reel Deal Theater.  


The Winter Wildlands Alliance Backcountry Film Festival aims at entertaining while raising funds and awareness for Winter Wildlands Alliance — a nonprofit organization, which promotes and preserves winter wildlands and snowsports experiences on public lands — as well as for its nonprofit partners, like PEEC.
Now in its ninth year, the festival begins annually in Boise, Idaho and travels to more than 100 locations worldwide including Los Alamos. The festival raises more than $110,000 each year, and last year raised almost $1,500 to support PEEC’s winter outdoor activities with children, families and adults.
The films in the Backcountry Film Festival have been created by both renowned and grassroots filmmakers, all who have submitted their best work depicting the concept of embracing outdoor adventure. Winter Wildlands Alliance hands out awards each year in three categories including “Best of Festival,” “Best Conservation Film” and “Best Short” (under five minutes long).
Aside from the 60-minute film, “Valhalla,” films range from three to 30 minutes long with a short intermission in between.
The Pajarito Brewpub will be on hand to sell beer, wine and spirits during the film and at intermission.
Also at intermission, PEEC will have a raffle for prizes, including items donated by local businesses Alpine Sports, the Los Alamos Cooperative Market, CB Fox, Fusion Multisport, REI and the Reel Deal Theater, as well as national sponsors Yak Trax, Ambler, Mountain Khakis, Point 6 and the Winter Wildlands Alliance.
This year’s program schedule includes:
• “Breaking Trail” — A beautiful, black and white portrait of deep powder skiing. Produced by Powderwhore.
• “Morning Rituals” — Features a day in the life of an undercover ski bum. Produced by Chris Dickey of Orange and Purple.
• “Youth” — Promotes the idea that backcountry skiing is a family affair. Produced by filmmaker Corey Rich.
• “Bolton Valley” — The 2013 winner of “Best Conservation Film” category. The story of how a small community fought to save their ski area.
• “Nokhoi Zeekh: In Search of the Wolverine” — Five Americans embark on a month-long expedition through Mongolia to document one of the world’s most iconic, least known winter species.
• “Bigger Braver” — The 2013 winner of “Best Short Film” category. A young female athlete shares her insight into the courage and strength involved in seeking big mountain adventure. Produced by filmmaker Luc Mehl.
• “Strong” — Captures Roger Strong’s reflections about moving on after a tragic avalanche. Produced by filmmaker Fitz Cahall at Duct Tape then Beer.
• “Poor Man’s Hell” — Skier Antoine Boisselier comes up with a unique, new way to the top of a mountain. Produced by Mike Douglas at Switchback Entertainment.
• “Take the Ride” — Poses the question “when you have a dream, will you buy the ticket?” Produced by filmmaker Jason Thompson.
• “Valhalla” — Winner of 2013 “Best of Festival,” Valhalla is a tale of one man’s search to rediscover the freedom of his youth. Produced by Sweetgrass Productions.
The Backcountry Film Festival has sold out each year in Los Alamos. This year, two movie screens will simultaneously show the films to ensure that everyone will have a chance to see them. Guests can purchase raffle tickets with a chance to win outdoor gear and other prizes.
Tickets are $12 in advance and can be purchased online at reeldealtheater.com, or on Jan. 30 at the door for $15 per ticket.
The Reel Deal Theater is located at 2551 Central Ave. The theater is the only location in New Mexico showing the films.
For more information, visit pajaritoeec.org/programs/calendar.php and click on “Backcountry Film Festival.” 

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