September 05, 2023

Susquehanna University will host the Wild & Scenic Film Festival on Sunday, Oct. 8, in the Degenstein Center Theater in the Charles B. Degenstein Campus Center.

The event will include multiple film screenings followed by a panel discussion and an art exhibition. Films will begin screening at 2 p.m. and continue until 4:10 p.m. A full listing of the films to be screened can be found here.

“Each film will focus on our connection to streams and rivers from personal, community and ecological perspectives; as well as impairment and efforts for recovery,” said Matt Wilson, director of Susquehanna’s Freshwater Research Institute, a co-sponsor of the event.

Following the films, an interdisciplinary panel discussion will convene to explore the films in the context of watershed impairment, restoration progress, humanity’s connection to rivers. Panelists will include John Dawes, executive director of the Foundation for Pennsylvania Watersheds; George Ferrandi, artist and creative director of Jump!Star; Adrienne Hobbins, program manager at the Chesapeake Conservancy; and John Zaktansky, executive director of the Middle Susquehanna Riverkeeper Association.

The event is also sponsored by Susquehanna’s Lore Degenstein Gallery and the Chesapeake Conservancy. The gallery’s ongoing exhibition, Flow, coincides with the Wild and Scenic Film Festival.

“Water is life — a remarkable, inimitable substance that covers over 70% of the Earth’s surface and is fundamental to the survival of all living things,” said Laura Libert, director of the Lore Degenstein Gallery. “This exhibition addresses how water systems support life, while acknowledging that water is more than its use-value as a commodity.”

From perspectives like storytelling, community and sensory experience, artists sTo Len, Stacy Levy, Naoe Suzuki and Allie Wist look beyond water’s role as a standing reserve to consider its personal, social and cultural meanings. The exhibition continues through Oct. 13.

The Wild & Scenic Film Festival is organized by the South Yuba River Citizens League, which was founded in 1983 and won protection for California’s South Yuba River from dams. Today, SYRCL is the central hub of community activism to protect, restore and celebrate the Yuba River watershed. Wild & Scenic’s film festival is held annually in Nevada City and Grass Valley, California, and features 100-plus films, workshops, visiting filmmaker and activist talks and more. The festival goes on tour to approximately 150 events each year, partnering with groups working to protect and restore the important places in their communities.