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Dam Short Film Festival, kicking off Wednesday, will screen 129 short movies

With less than a week to go until the 12th annual Dam Short Film Festival, last minute details are being finalized to make sure this year’s festival is the best one yet, according to Lee Lanier, executive director.

“We had a record number for attendance last year, and we’re actually looking to top that this year,” Lanier said. “We’re finishing up training our volunteers, and we are making final arrangements on things like printing programs, and posters.”

In all, 129 films will be shown Feb. 10-13 at the Boulder Theatre, with a variety of different genres to choose from, including drama, animation, comedy, drama, romance, sci-fi, horror and underground, which offers a naughty side. Films are scheduled to be shown from noon to 9 p.m. in about hour-long blocks.

As in past years, local filmmakers will be showcased in the Nevada Filmmakers program, which is scheduled for 8 p.m. Feb. 11.

In addition, a special program featuring films from France will be shown at 3:45 p.m. Feb. 11.

For filmmaker Adam Zielinski, this year will be his sixth time he has submitted a film in the festival. Zielinski, who graduated from UNLV with a degree in film, will be showing his film “Call You Later,” which is about a guy who is struggling to understand what he wants in the dating world on top of dealing with people’s feelings and expectations.

“What keeps me coming back is that John Labonney (a board director for the festival) is an excellent director and the staff is really great every year,” Zielinski said. “What I really like to see is that they do their due diligence in staying up with the technology. So this year we went to a screening format of DCP (digital cinema package), which is a more professional delivery, and that just shows the level they want to take the festival to.”

Zielinski said he feels Boulder City is the perfect town to have a film festival like this because it is just outside of Las Vegas and provides enough small town charm.

This year, 40 film crews from all over the world are scheduled to attend the festival. They will be arriving on Tuesday and Wednesday, just in time for the commencement of the festival.

“I’m always excited to see a new batch of films come in. I just don’t know if I can pick one thing to be excited about, there’s so much going on,” Lanier said.

A great deal of festival fan favorites will be returning this year, that includes a meet and greet with the filmmakers, an award ceremony with the winners being selected by the audience, and a mixer so filmmakers and fans can mingle with each other.

The Best of the Fest films voted by audience members will be screened at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 13, just prior to the awards ceremony.

Four-day passes to the festival are available for $100. Also available is a one-day pass for $30, or a one program pass (which includes four to 11 short films) for $9. Tickets are sold online, as well as at door the day of the festival.

Contact reporter Juan Diego Pergentili at jpergentili@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow him on Twitter @jdpbcreview.

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Film fest accepting submissions for 2021 event

The Dam Short Film Festival, which will return for its 17th year in February, is now accepting submissions for the 2021 event.

Weekend’s Best Bets, March 19

1 BLOOMIN’ FUN: After winter rains, the desert surrounding Boulder City and throughout Lake Mead National Recreation Area is in bloom. The southern end of the park has seen the most wildflowers. As temperatures warm, the flowers will begin to bloom in the northern parts.

Weekend’s Best Bets, March 12

1 PATRIOTIC PANCAKES: Help raise funds for the local American Legion, Post 31, and veterans by joining members for breakfast Saturday. Scheduled from 7-10:30 a.m. at the post, 508 California Ave., the menu includes pancakes, sausage, orange juice and coffee. Cost is $6 for adults and $4 for children.

Weekend’s Best Bets, March 5

1 ‘MALEFICENT’ MOVIE: Boulder City Library will show “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” at 6 p.m. Friday. The film tells the story of Maleficent, who travels to an old castle for the wedding of Aurora to Prince Phillip. While there she learns of a plot by Aurora’s future mother-in-law to destroy the land’s fairies and she joins a group of outcasts to stop her. Those attending are welcome to bring snacks, comfortable chairs and blankets. The Friends of the Library will have snacks and books available for a donation. The library is at 701 Adams Blvd.

Weekend’s Best Bets, Feb. 27

1 HISTORIC TALE: “Harriet,” the story of Harriet Tubman, who escaped from slavery in 1849 and then helped hundreds of others through the Underground Railroad, will be shown at 5:30 p.m. Friday in the community room of the Boulder City Library, 701 Adams Blvd. Snacks and drinks, along with comfortable chairs and blankets can be brought to the screening.

Weekend’s Best Bets, Feb. 20

1 RIVER HISTORY: Boulder City/Hoover Dam Museum’s Third Thursday educational lecture series resumes tonight with a presentation about the Colorado River by local resident George Rhee. A native of Geneva, Rhee has taught at UNLV in the physics and astronomy department since 1993 and also works on climate, water and energy research. The museum is inside the Boulder Dam Hotel, 1305 Arizona St. Call 702-294-1988 for more information.

Weekend’s Best Bets, Feb. 13

1 MOVIE TIME: The Dam Short Film Festival returns for its 16th incarnation today, Feb. 13, and continues through Sunday, Feb. 16, at the historic Boulder Theatre, 1225 Arizona St. More than 145 films in a variety of genres will be shown. The festival also includes a meet and greet event, a mixer and an awards party. Special screenings of the award-winning films are scheduled for Monday, Feb. 17. Visit https://damshortfilm.org/ for a full schedule and more information.

Weekend’s Best Bets, Feb. 6

1 STORY ON THE GO: Learn what happens “If You Give a Moose a Muffin” as you stroll through the Boulder City/Hoover Dam Museum as part of Storywalk, a joint project with Boulder City Library. There is no cost to participate and all children who complete an activity sheet and turn it in at the library, 701 Adams Blvd., will get a prize. The museum is inside the Boulder Dam Hotel, 1305 Arizona St., and is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Admission is free.

Weekend’s Best Bets, Jan. 30

1 HEAVENLY GAZING: Rangers from Lake Mead National Recreation Area are joining with members of the Las Vegas Astronomical Society for a star party Saturday at the amphitheater at Boulder Beach. A program to learn about the night sky, as well as how to protect and view it, at 5:30 p.m. will begin the event. A telescope will be available from 6-8 p.m. to view constellations and planets. Those attending should bring water and a flashlight, preferably with a red filter. Reservations are recommended and can be made by calling 702-293-8990.

Weekend’s Best Bets, Jan. 23

1 FULL STEAM AHEAD: Immerse yourself in a large-scale, outdoor model railroad that you can ride on. The trains, powered by live steam engines or diesel-electric locomotive replicas, run along a 7.5-inch gauge line near the depot at the Nevada State Railroad Museum, 601 Yucca St. The steamers run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. the second and fourth Saturday of each month. Rides are free and no tickets are required. The trains are owned and operated by volunteer members of the Friends of the Nevada Southern Railway. For more information, visit http://bit.ly/2R01Vq9.