Sharing inspirational stories: Mountainfilm Festival screens at Quinnipiac

A steady stream of students stepped up for red carpet-style photos, festival swag and free popcorn on the way to filling every available seat for Mountainfilm on Tour, hosted by the School of Communications on the Mount Carmel Campus.

Each year, Quinnipiac’s Director of Operations for the School of Communications Pete Sumby leads the university’s participation in the tour, an offshoot of the international Mountainfilm Festival. The tour and festival showcase independent documentary films celebrating adventure, activism, social justice, environment and indomitable spirit.

Born in 1979 in Telluride, Colorado, Mountainfilm Festival gathers every Memorial Day weekend to bring together a community of filmmakers and change makers. On tour and at the festival, Mountainfilm uses the power of film, art and ideas to inspire audiences to create a better world.

Terry Bloom, interim dean for the School of Communications, welcomed Bobcats packing the screening on April 4 and thanked Sumby and other program leaders for their legwork in bringing Mountainfilm to Quinnipiac every year. Bloom also recognized School of Communications faculty with classes involved in the event, including graphic design students developing a series of film posters on display and public relations students assisting with the event planning.

“There was lots of involvement this year. It’s really great to see; and it’s nice to have our community come together,” said Bloom.

Senior instructor of interactive media and design Kent Golden introduced the festival’s short films, including the first of the evening, “To Be Frank.” In the 11-minute film, director Anna Wilder Burns explores the authenticity and community in surfing via Californian Frank Paine, a 73-year-old South Bay icon.

“It is a well-crafted film with beautiful cinematography and spot-on sound design, which is of course very important,” Golden said. “But it has a really important element beyond all of that, which is, it has heart. This film, on the surface, is about surfing, but I think what is really important about it is Frank’s approach. His approach to life, his approach to the challenges in his life, his approach to his hobbies, his interests and of course, his community.”

Mountainfilm on Tour encourages students and others interested in learning more about the films, filmmakers, or subjects involved to visit

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