Why we brought Mountainfilm to Savannah

For 37 years my secret escape has been to an old mining town nestled in the Colorado mountains.  The natural beauty that surrounds the canyon town of Telluride makes the area one of the most beautiful places on earth.  Fourteen thousand foot mountains, rivers for fishing and exploring, forests and hiking trails attract people to Telluride.

A festival started 35 years ago that brought Mountaineers to climb during the day and watch films about climbing at night.

That was the beginning of what is now Telluride Mountainfilm.

The festival evolved over the years to become an educational and inspiring gathering of like minded people that are passionate about living their lives to make a difference.  The festival brings diversity in documentary films showing the actions people take to explore places, conquer challenges, converse about planetary issues and change the outcome for the struggles people face worldwide.

By attending Mountainfilm in Telluride over the years, I was educated about modern day slavery, learned about doctors who travel to Africa to change people ‘s lives, watched films showing how people change the world one step at a time.  The gathering of diverse people had a passion to protect our natural resources.  Through their stories, I become more conscious of our human smallness in this vast universe, of cultures similar yet so unlike us as we all journey together on this planet that we share for resources and must protect for future generations.

I was inspired by what I heard, experienced and saw at Mountainfilm.  “Bag It” made me want to use less plastic.   A symposium on food corruption changed my eating habits.  Films featuring the impact of strip mining and pollution of our land and rivers made me more aware of the impact man is having on our own survival as well as survival of other species.  I see the good of the human spirit with doctors traveling to African villages to combat blindness; Olympians giving up their winnings to teach play to children living in refugee camps in war zone areas; and people who create a special bicycle that gives people freedom to travel for an education or for medical care.  The combination of social justice, culture and adventure is amazing — all in one weekend!

Through film, I traveled to remote places climbing mountains, kayaking rivers, Surfing waves and biking the planet.  How could I not share this educational event with my community?

Each attendee leaves so inspired that we can hardly wait a year until the next festival so that we can watch films, listen to discussions, learn more, and as a result want to do more and be more!

When I decided to talk with the director of Mountainfilm on tour to learn more about bringing the film festival to Savannah, it was already traveling worldwide.

Telluride was my secret place, yet I felt selfish if I did not share Mountainfilm’s message with my community. The adventures wake you up as they take you to places you might never go to do things you might never do.  I brought together a team of people I knew had a connection to Telluride. We shared the vision of bringing Mountainfilm on Tour to Savannah and collectively, found the energy and excitement needed to organize the event.  Thus was born, Mountainfilm on Tour, Savannah.  A great team of volunteers working in collaboration have grown the event to offer Savannah our fifth Telluride Mountainfilm on Tour showcasing the best of the documentary films shown in Telluride.

We are proud to be a part of Telluride Mountainfilm on Tour — bringing you films that educate and inspire conversations worth having about issues that matter and adventures that keep you on the edge of your seats!

Zelda Tenenbaum

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