In a scene from the film “We Feed People,” World Central Kitchen volunteers prepare food inside a building that lost its roof to a hurricane. National Geographic/Clara Wetzel
The 21st annual Ashland Independent Film Festival launches Friday, April 1 and runs through Sunday, April 10. The festival will be held virtually this year using the online platform Eventive, and showcase more than 65 feature films — greatly expanding the lineup from previous years — and a half-dozen short-film compilations.
“We’re thrilled that the AIFF program will be more accessible than ever this year, with nearly all features being available to watch for the entire 10-day festival, rather than only during a select showtime,” Roberta Munroe, executive artistic director of AIFF, stated in a press release. “Most of the films will also be available to watch nationwide, rather than being geo-targeted to Oregon, as in previous years, and other festivals with virtual screenings.”
Cited by MovieMaker Magazine as one of the “Top 25 Coolest Festivals in the World” and one of the “Top 50 Festivals Worth the Entry Fee,” the AIFF lineup this year features 27 documentary features, 27 narrative features, seven locals-only shorts , 14 student short films, 14 documentary shorts and 14 short-story films. The 2022 program also includes kid flicks, special one-day-only screenings, Q-and-A’s with filmmakers and more.
AIFF’s Opening Night, Centerpiece and Closing feature films are special one-day-only screenings of three powerhouse documentaries addressing important modern global issues.
Festival Opening Day Feature Film, April 1: “We Feed People” — A chronicle of how Chef José Andrés and his nonprofit, World Central Kitchen, rebuilds nations in the wake of disaster, providing healthy food to those affected. Directed by Ron Howard. A portion of ticket sales from “We Feed People” will be donated by AIFF directly to World Central Kitchen to aid its current efforts for Ukraine.
Centerpiece Feature Film Festival, April 6: “The Territory” — This film is a 2022 internationally co-produced National Geographic documentary film directed by Alex Pritz and a Sundance Award-winning film. It follows a young Indigenous leader fighting back against farmers who occupy a protected area of the Amazon rainforest.
Festival Closing Day Feature Film, April 10: “Fire Of Love” — This is another National Geographic documentary about intrepid scientists and lovers Katia and Maurice Krafft who die in a volcanic explosion doing the very thing that brought them together — unraveling the mysteries of volcanoes by capturing some of nature’s most explosive imagery.
For the entire festival, locally and regionally celebrated filmmakers are heavily featured, as well as filmmakers from around the world, with diverse backgrounds, perspectives and artistic styles.
“AIFF’s lineup this year truly has something for everyone. We have those true indie films with spirit and drive, and the bigger independents that will be screening at arthouses throughout the country. Sundance and SXSW films dot the line-up as well,” said Joe Bilancio, director of programming for AIFF. “With a lineup that’s more than twice the size as the past, there are even more good things to see… with more time to see them all. So while we can’t be with you in person this year, we do hope you will laugh with us, cry with us and [feel] a lot of other emotions as well.”
AIFF tickets are on sale now. Tickets start at $13.50 per film, except for the one-day-only features ($20). Ticket packages and AIFF membership packages are available, ranging in price from $25 to $800 for an all-festival pass with access to all films. For a full listing of showtimes, tickets, filmmaker discussions, Q-and-A sessions, and more, see ashlandfilm.org. The AIFF box office is available from 9:30 am to 1 pm Monday through Friday at 541-488-3823. After-hours help is available by email at email@example.com.
Rogue Valley livestreams, virtual events
Ashland senior activities
A variety of virtual and in-person activities and services are available to adults 50 and older Mondays through Fridays through the Ashland Senior Center, 1699 Homes Ave. See ashlandseniorservices.org or call 541-488-5342 for full listings.
native plants garden tour
Take a virtual tour through 11 gardens to explore trees, shrubs, perennials and wildflowers that are native to our area at jacksoncountymga.org/native-plants-garden-tour. Included are an eco-restoration garden, a permaculture mini-farm, a small urban garden and more. Admission is free; donations to the Jackson County Master Gardeners Association will be accepted. For more information, call 541-227-1358.
Historic Jacksonville virtual tour
Historic Jacksonville, Inc. has created a variety of virtual ways for you to explore the National Historic Landmark town, Jacksonville. Watch two online videos — a 30-minute “Walk through History” virtual tour which takes you to 23 different sites, and a 45-minute “Jacksonville Historic Homes” video tour which visits 27 different historic houses including the wooden 1855 Mathew G. Kennedy house, the 1873 Beekman House, and the 1892 Jeremiah Nunan house. Read through two text-based virtual tours “Beekman Bank Nuggets,” and “Mrs. Beekman Invites You to Call,” or the “Walk through History” blog to learn more about specific Jacksonville historic sites. You can also read stories of beer, wine, whiskey, saloons, and “entrepreneurs” in the “Thirsty Thursday” on-line series. For more information or to access see historicjacksonville.org.
Folk, soul and roots duo Cilette Swann and Roman Morykit will perform a special livestream concert in honor of Swann’s upcoming birthday at 5 pm Saturday, March 26. A pre-show will start at 4:45 pm The duo will perform a mix of originals and covers during the hour/hour-and-a-half-long show. Swann has selected a few favorites to perform, including “You’re Beautiful To Me,” “Turkish Delight,” “We Can’t Let This Go,” “Where Did We Go Wrong,” “Higher Ground,” “We Lose Ourselves In Life,” “You” and “Natural Woman.” The concert is available to be livestreamed via Facebook, YouTube and Twitch, and on the Gypsy Soul website (gypsysoul.com). The show is on a “pay-what-you-want” basis. Once at the duo’s website, you will find a “virtual tip jar,” where you can use PayPal or a credit card to start the show. You do not have to sign up for anything unless you would like to be sent a reminder for the concert or you’d like to be part of the chat/comments during the concert.
Teens ages 13 and older can join in a live, fast-paced game of general knowledge trivia using Zoom and the Kahoot platform at 4:30 pm the fourth Monday (March 28) of every month. Log into the Zoom meeting to see the questions and respond on the Kahoot app or website. You don’t need an account to play, just the app and the game PIN, which we will be provided during the Zoom meeting. This quiz will contain 70 questions on a variety of subjects. For further details or to register, see jcls.org and click on Programs & Events and then JCLS Calendar or call 541-774-8679. Meeting details will be emailed to you. when you register.
queer coffee house
The social group for LGBTQ+ communities and their allies meets from 10 am to noon the first Saturday of each month (April 2) via Zoom. Bring a list of your recent favorite books, movies, and/or podcasts, and share what projects or crafts you’re working on. To register or further details, see jcls.org and click on Programs & Events and then JCLS Calendar, or call 541-774-8679.
Booking It — Running and Reading Club
Kids ages 13 and older who are interested in reading and running are invited to run and to read (or listen to an audio-book while running) each week then gather virtually at 4 pm the first Monday of each month (April 4) via Zoom to discuss how the running is going and what everyone is reading. For further details or to register, see jcls.org and click on Programs & Events and then JCLS Calendar or call 541-774-8679. Meeting details will be emailed to you when you register.
Books at Noon
This readers’ group discusses various books and offer suggestions for new reads at noon the first Tuesday (April 5) of each month, via Zoom. To register, see jcls.libcal.com or for more info call 541-535-7090.
Technology and Community Presentation
Presenter Christopher Davis will give a talk on how to use technology to engage with your community at 3 pm Tuesday, April 5, via Zoom. Learn how to use GIS data to see what’s happening around you, find free tax prep aid, sign up for Citizen Alert, explore volunteer opportunities and more. Registration is required. For further details or to register, see jcls.org and click on Programs & Events and then JCLS Calendar, or call 541-774-8679. Meeting details will be emailed to you when you register.
Windows in Time — local history reading
As part of the free “Windows in Time” lecture series, local historian and a trustee of the Southern Oregon Historical Society, Larry Mullaly will present “The Greatest Generation: Medford in World War II” at noon Wednesday, April 6, at the Medford library, 205 S. Central Ave., and via Zoom. Mullaly will provide insight into what it was like in the Rogue Valley during World War II. Families could not easily purchase shoes and clothing; food and gasoline were rationed. New automobiles—even tires—could not be had. The war also transformed the city of Medford, an agricultural center with less than 12,000 inhabitants. Construction personnel and army trainees came from nearby Camp White, and its airport was under the control of the military. Registration is required for attending both in-person and online. To register and for further details, see jcls.org and click on Programs & Events and then JCLS Calendar, or for more info call 541-774-8679. Meeting details will be emailed to you when you register. The program will be recorded for later viewing on JCLS’ YouTube channel, youtube.com/c/JCLSBeyond.
Monette Hoffmeister will discuss approaches to and practices for waterwise ornamental gardening from 1 to 2:30 pm Saturday, April 23, via Zoom. Topics include characteristics of water-thrifty plants and their management in gardens and lawns. Registration is required. For further details or to register, see jcls.org and click on Programs & Events and then JCLS Calendar, or call 541-774-8679. Meeting details will be emailed to you when you register.
Teens ages 13 and older can join in a live, fast-paced game of general knowledge trivia using Zoom and the Kahoot platform at 4:30 pm the fourth Monday (April 25) of every month. Log into the Zoom meeting to see the questions and respond on the Kahoot app or website. You don’t need an account to play, just the app and the game PIN, which we will be provided during the Zoom meeting. This quiz will contain 70 questions on a variety of subjects. For further details or to register, see jcls.org and click on Programs & Events and then JCLS Calendar or call 541-774-8679. Meeting details will be emailed to you when you register.