If you are looking for something captivating to do this month, you won’t want to miss the Banff Mountain Film Festival which is coming to Sitka on February 11th. The festival will be stopping in Sitka for one day only as part of its world tour which makes the film festival accessible to almost 400,000 people all over the world. Sitka is one of the first stops on the tour which features more than 800 screenings in 40 different countries.
The Banff Mountain Film Festival features the best of films, books, and speaking engagements related to mountains, mountaineering, climbing, expeditions, remote cultures, and the wildest, more remote places on our planet. The main festival is held at the Banff Centre in Alberta, Canada. The Centre operates as an art and creativity incubator, providing programs, facilities, and support for more than 8,000 participants from all over the world. The Banff Mountain Film Festival is one of the Centre’s annual events and lasts for 9 days each November.
Originally created as a way for climbers and mountaineers to share their experiences and entertain themselves in the off-season, the festival has grown into an internationally recognized event during its 35 year history. Highlights of the festival include the film competition, the book competition, the photography competition, and the speakers. Mountain climbers, adventurers, wilderness photographers, and outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds submit their work to these competitions in an effort to be recognized by their community and in hopes of winning a slot in the world tour. Those that are chosen to be part of the tour will have their work seen by people on every continent.
The films being featured on this year’s world tour feature a wide range of outdoor activities and experiences. They range from 35, which documents climbing 35 different rock climbing routes in a single day and won the festivals award for best short mountain film to North of the Sun, about two Norwegians who spend the winter skiing and surfing. The films selected for this year’s tour span almost every outdoor activity imaginable from kayaking to skiing to mountain biking to surfing and everything in between. These films celebrate the most adventurous souls among us while putting some of the most beautiful and remote places on the planet on display.
Although the tour travels all the way around the world, the experience in each location is unique to that location. The organization hosting each festival stop creates a program specific to the interests in their area by selecting from the wide range of material offered by this year’s festival. The Banff Mountain Film Festival stop in Sitka will be held at the Sitka Performing Arts Center and begins at 7:00 PM. Tickets are available at Old Harbor Books and The Hames Center. For more information, visit the Sitka Banff Mountain Film Festival Page.