Film series to be discussed

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Steamboat Springs Arts Council members hope to clear the air and discuss publicly the future of a foreign film series.

In a letter to the editor published in the Steamboat Pilot & Today on Feb. 23, Arts Council President Nora Parker promised to consider bringing the Free Friday Foreign Film Series back if the council received 10 calls or e-mails by the end of the week.

They received four calls, Arts Council Executive Director Nancy Kramer said. "It wasn't the 10 we asked for, but we saw this as an opportunity to have our new board member Mike Martin and (film instructor) Dori Weiss talk to the community about their involvement in film."

At noon Monday, Kramer, Weiss and Martin will explain the history of the film series, explain why it was canceled and discuss the possibility of bringing the series back.

For four years, the Arts Council has offered a free foreign film series on Friday nights at Centennial Hall, but citing poor attendance and financial difficulties, the Arts Council's board of directors voted to cancel the series in December.

Kramer said attendance of the film series was down by 50 percent -- meaning 60 to 65 people came to each film.

If the series is brought back, Kramer envisions involving local restaurants where people can meet afterward to discuss the film they just saw.

"We are open to all ideas to re-initiate this program," Kramer said, "but we need to discuss the potential cost, the potential partnerships and ask where is the volunteer base." The Arts Council still has two dates on the books at Centennial Hall reserved for the canceled film series. Those dates could be used if the discussion goes well.

"I don't want this meeting to be a chance for everyone to dwell on all the negative stuff that has come up about the film series," Kramer said. "We need to move forward.

"If this is an art asset, we need to figure out how to save it."

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