movies

Five Best Events at the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival

Now in its 24th Season, the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival is recognized as one of the best in the country. For the last three years, it has been MovieMaker’s coveted list of the “Top 50 Festivals” for new and upcoming talent.

There are stellar films and movie stars and events and unique venues. In short, because there are so many fabulous things about the SLO Film Festival, it is difficult to choose just five.

But I’ll give it a go!

 

1. Independent Film & King Vidor Career Achievement Award

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A centerpiece of the SLO Film Festival is the Independent Film & King Vidor Career Achievement Award. Legendary actors, directors, film editors, film composers, and others in the Industry, such as Morgan Freeman, Josh Brolin, James Cromwell, Alan Arkin, Elmer Berstein, Ernest Borgnine, Neil Travis, Ann Margret, to name just a few, have been awarded this prestigious award.

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This takes place on Saturday night, March 17, at the historic Fremont Theater in downtown San Luis Obispo. The always informative and entertaining Ben Mankiewicz, the host of Turner Classic Movies, will be returning as the host for the evening.

2. Surf Nite

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Surf Nite is so fun, so entertaining. In fact, the Boutique Hotel Collection has been a long-time Major Sponsor of the Festival and its Surf Nite. Over the years, Surf Nite has honored legendary surfers and surf filmmakers, such as Bud Browne, Gerry Lopez, Greg Noll, Nat Young, Jeff Clark, Linda Benson, and many more. This year, on Friday, March 16, the North American premiere of The Big Wave Project will be shown at the Fremont Theater. Filmmaker Tim Bonython will be traveling straight from Australia to introduce this awesome movie.

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3. The Venues

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The venues are one of the best parts of the SLO Film Festival. Movies are shown at the intimate Palm Theatre, the stunning and historic Fremont Theater, and Downtown Theatres—all in San Luis Obispo, as well as at the Bay Theatre in Morro Bay and the Park Cinemas in Paso Robles. Over the years, movie screening and special events have been held at a Masonic Lodge, beautiful wineries, Old West ranches, Hearst Castle, and many other remarkable places.

4. The Parties

Of course, it wouldn’t be a real festival without the parties! And the SLO Film Festival has some of the very best. Great food and wine and lively and intelligent conversations! Party Central is the Festival Tent, located directly in front of the Old Mission in downtown San Luis Obispo. All the spectacular events—except one, at Tolosa Winery—are held in the Festival Tent.

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One of the many outstanding benefits for Movie Mogul pass holders is that the each day and night of the Festival they get unfettered access and all-day/night snacks, wine, beer, and other refreshments at the Festival Tent.

5. The Movies

The core of the Festival is, of course, movies. There are dozens of movies, ones you’ll never see at mainstream theaters or even on conventional streaming channels. The diversity of films is amazing. You’ll find full length movies, shorts, and documentaries on an extraordinary variety of topics. It is simply hard to convey how exciting and unique this is. So many of us are just exposed to huge Hollywood-style productions. But this is an opportunity to delve into a truly fascinating world of film that definitely expands one’s view of cinema. 

Check out the full schedule of movies and events at: slofilmfest.org. There are a variety of options for tickets and festival passes.

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Don’t miss the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival. It is treasured by locals and for film fans that travel to our area to this phenomenal event. Congratulations to Executive Director, Wendy Eidson, the SLO Film Festival Board of Director, the countless volunteers, and the SLO County businesses, media outlets, and individuals that sponsor and/or support it.

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Top 5 Things to Do in SLO County Before Summer Ends....

Summer seems to get shorter every year, and it's already speeding by. While BBQ's, swimming, bike rides, and ice cream usually figure in to most everyone's summer plans, here are a few suggestions for summer fun (most of which end when summer ends). Put these on your calendar, before summer slips away like the tide.

 

1.Local Summer Concerts

With concerts on set days throughout the county, you can usually find live music, and it's FREE. Most shows feature beer/wine and snacks for purchase, if you can't bring your own to enjoy with the show. So bring your picnic blanket and chairs (or don't, who's sitting still at a concert), and get ready for some great music! 

Mark your Calendars! Monday September 5, Live on the Rocks @ The Cliffs

Mark your Calendars! Monday September 5, Live on the Rocks @ The Cliffs

Wednesdays ~ Templeton

Thursdays ~ Downtown Paso Robles

Fridays ~ Downtown San Luis Obispo

Saturdays ~ Atascadero  or Los Osos/Morro Bay  

Sundays ~ Arroyo Grande

 

2. Movie Under the Stars

Warm summer evenings are meant to be spent outdoors, and what makes a better experience for the family than sitting outside for your favorite movie. With one of the last few drive-in movie theaters in the California, you can't pass up a show at the Sunset Drive-In, which opened in 1950. Pack your sleeping bag and snacks (or buy some there) for the true movie experience.

Click here for showtimes and more information!

3. Bocce Ball @ Baileyana Vineyard

Summer is about relaxing, and there's nothing as relaxing as soaking up the view of a vineyard filled valley while sipping an award winning glass of wine. Play a game of bocce ball on their courts while picnicking (buy cheese, salami and crackers there or bring your own), and you will feel like you've been transported to Tuscany. Quite an escape, just a few miles away!

4.Pick of the Season

While most of our Farmers' Markets are available year round, Summer Produce is not! The sweetness of a vine ripened tomato, the crunch of fresh corn, or the snap of beans just picked from the vine, there truly is nothing like it. If you're visiting, grab some fresh juicy peaches and plums warmed by the sun or if you live locally, fill your basket with goodies to throw on the grill (squash and eggplant ~ just a little olive oil, salt, pepper & garlic, the best!). Not to mention the music, entertainment and prepared foods that you can find at our local markets too.

Here is information about the seasonal Avila Beach Farmers' Market and the year-round San Luis Obispo Farmers' Market!

5.Campfire on the Beach

While it is imperative to follow the rules and regulations, summer is not complete without at least one bonfire! Roasting hot dogs and s'mores (although oftentimes they end up in the fire), telling stories, warming hands, and celebrating friendships over a roaring fire is what summer memories are made of. Fire pits are available on a first come, first serve basis in Avila Beach (the middle beach over the bridge).

For more information, click here!