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  • Gig Harbor Film Festival: Educating

Enriching Cultural and Economic Vitality

Enriching Cultural and Economic Vitality

Since 2007, Gig Harbor Film Festival’s mission has been to cultivate a community of filmmakers and film lovers who celebrate the power of the cinematic arts to educate, entertain and inspire.

Through events such as the annual Gig Harbor Film Festival, 72 Hour Filmmaking Competition, Annual Summer Fundraiser and Monthly Movie Nights, the Gig Harbor Film Festival has continued to enrich local community life—for more than a decade—by making unique film and social experiences accessible for all. Looking to the future, “We’re excited about expanding further with programs that engage local youth,” says Melanie Kerr, communications coordinator. “It’s very rewarding to give young people new opportunities to learn, grow and express themselves creatively.”

Gig Harbor Film Festival is currently working with local Peninsula School District media arts teachers and other community partners to create a rewarding and fun summer Youth Filmmaking Camp in hopes to empower students to tap into their imaginations and express their creative voices. They currently have a Crowfunding campaign, in which they hope to raise $20,000 for the summer camp, with contributions to be matched by an anonymous donor.

Executive Director Jenny Wellman manages the operations of the organization seamlessly, from the big-picture planning to the most minute—and countless—details. “And she tackles it all with masterful skill and professionalism,” adds Melanie. The organization would not be possible without Jenny, in addition to the dedicated volunteer board of directors (who contribute their time, skills and enthusiasm) and devoted team of staff and volunteers who work endlessly to make GHFF the incredible organization that it is.

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“As a nonprofit, we rely heavily on the support of our generous sponsors and donors. We could not do what we do without them,” Melanie says.

The three-day Gig Harbor Film Festival is a premier event held each fall and is host to more than 80 visiting filmmakers, screening more than 100 films of various genres at the luxurious, state-of-the-art Galaxy Theatre in Uptown. As the festival continues to emerge as one of the top destinations on the independent film festival circuit thanks to the unwavering local hospitality, in addition to enjoying the many films, festival goers have the opportunity to attend Q&A sessions with the filmmakers and special festival parties and events.

GHFF was recently awarded a Top 100 Best Reviewed Film Festivals ranking—out of approximately 2,500 film festivals open for submissions—on FilmFreeway. “This ranking is especially rewarding because it came from our filmmakers, proving our priority on world-class hospitality has not gone unnoticed,” says Melanie.

The GHFF Monthly Movie Nights are offered on the last Wednesday of every month (except for December) starting at 6:30pm at the Galaxy Theatre.

Mark your calendars for the 72 Hour Filmmaking Competition in March with registration opening January 2019. This is a chance for filmmakers to create and complete a film in just 72 hours, with screening of the films to follow. Orientation will be held on March 9, filming on March 14 through 17 and the screening on March 24 at the IMAX. For more information about the competition, visit

Whether you're a film buff or filmmaker, you'll find what you are looking for thanks to Gig Harbor Film Festival. You’ll be engaged, entertained and inspired!

Gig Harbor Film Festival

3006 Judson Street #102

Gig Harbor, Washington, 98335


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