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Everett Film Festival will be Feb. 17 and 18,
celebrating its 20th year of unique flicks

EVERETT — Twenty years ago, a group of female film buffs created the Everett Women’s Film Festival.
The group’s intention was to bring quality, female-made films that focused on the female experience throughout the world to those in Everett and Snohomish County.
The annual event, which has blossomed to have an average attendance of between 300 and 400 people, will holds its 20th anniversary shows on Friday, Feb. 17 and Saturday, Feb. 18 at the Everett Performing Arts Center, 2710 Wetmore Ave.
In 2011, it was renamed the Everett Film Festival for a reason.
“As we went along, we felt that we wanted to broaden (the festival) a little bit because our audience wasn’t as diverse as we would’ve
liked it to be,” said festival director Teresa Henderson. Henderson went on to say that changing the name has brought in a broader reach of audiences.
This volunteer-coordinated cinema celebration still places significant emphasis on movies created by, and about, women. However, the festival also includes titles from male filmmakers and films that highlight more broad topics about humanity. Almost all of the films are recent and not seen in mainstream moviehouses.
“We’ve shown a variety of films that have to do, basically, (with) the human condition more than anything,” Henderson said.
The festival also brings in films that focus on relevant topics. For instance, the screening roster includes “Queen of the Sun” on Saturday, a documentary about globally declining bee populations.
A beekeeper from the locally based Sunshine Honey Company, Mike Miller, will be on hand this year for a Q&A about the ongoing bee shortage after the showing.
Indie flicks and other lesser-known movies are frequently featured at the festival.
“We try to go for the obscure,” said Henderson.
The Everett Film Festival also aims to place a spotlight on local products and talent.
Local musicians David Lee Howard and Michael J. Good will be performing on Friday and Saturday, respectively. On Friday, just as they do every year, the volunteer coordinators behind this fantastic festival will be putting on a spread of their own homemade appetizers, beverages, and desserts for moviegoers.
On Saturday, meanwhile, a large variety of food and drink, mostly from local sponsors, will be available during the festival’s so-named Restaurant Happy Hour.
In addition to dining and imbibing options, a raffle will be held on Friday and Saturday. Two pieces of metal art, crafted by local
artist Mike Nordine, are up for grabs and will be awarded to the two lucky winners of the raffle.
Since this is an entirely volunteer operated and organized event, additional help is both welcome and necessary to keep the reels rolling. Those people with skills in grant writing and marketing are particularly in demand.
“We welcome people to join us, and learn who we are…it can just make an event so much better by having a volunteer force that changes and expands,” said Henderson.
More importantly, volun-teers also represent the very future of this festival.
“Quite frankly, (the film festival) is being run by a pretty stalwart group of women, and some of us are getting up there in years,” Henderson said with a hearty laugh, adding simply that, “We need some new blood.”

Event details
The Everett Film Festival will take place on Feb. 17 and 18 in the Everett Performing Arts Center, 2710 Wetmore Ave.
The gala opens Friday night at 6 p.m., and movie showings go into the night. On Saturday, movies roll 1 to 9:30 p.m.
Tickets can be purchased at www.everettfilmfest.org for Friday at $25, Saturday at $30, or for both days for $50. The full screening schedule is on that website as well.

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