Reel Paddling Film Festival | Environment

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Reel Paddling Film Festival
Reel Paddling Film Festival

The Maine Island Trail Association & the Northern Forest Canoe Trail are bringing the Reel Paddling Film Festival to Portland on March 29th, 2013. This event will be held at Hannaford Hall on the USM campus at 7:00 pm, and will include the exclusive premier of a new short film celebrating the Maine Island Trail on the occasion of its 25th anniversary.

A silent auction to benefit the Maine Island Trail Association, showcasing high quality gear and original Maine art, will begin at 6:00 pm. A unique collection of auction items will be on hand, including a stand-up paddleboard, gift certificates to local restaurants, a variety of weekend getaways, sailing, kayaking, and whitewater rafting packages, selections from talented local artists, and much more. A cash bar and hors d'oeuvres will also be available.

The Reel Paddling Film Festival is an international film tour presenting the world’s best whitewater, sea kayaking, canoeing, stand-up paddling and kayak fishing films of the year. Audiences can expect to see stand-up paddle surfing, hairy whitewater, sea kayakers exploring remote coastlines, headwaters canoe expeditions, international river travel films, motivating environmental documentaries, grueling kayak fishing battles and hilarious short films capturing the lighter side of paddling life.

Some of the films include:

Rock the Boat – Saving America’s Wildest River, where a local boater insists on seeing the L.A. River as a river again and causes a local controversy that takes on national proportions;

Go Ganges!, where two friends on a quest to travel the ultimate river by any means possible find epic adventure on the holy and polluted Ganges;

That First Glide, a documentary that traces stand-up paddling’s deep roots in early Polynesian and Hawaiian history and how it is rapidly expanding today; and

Huck, as it explores what it means to kayak off of big waterfalls, considering both the risk and rewards of a life driven by freefall.

The Maine Island Trail Association has also curated several local films for the festival that will highlight cruising and sailing on the Maine coast, including:

Introducing Kids To Boats, Part 1, a short film that demonstrates the benefits to young children of gaining independence on the water, by Brooklin-based Off-Center Harbor;

and the premier of a short film documenting the history and legacy of the Maine Island Trail on the occasion of its 25th anniversary.

Through these films, local sponsors MITA and the Northern Forest Canoe Trail look to bring attention to recreational paddling locally and along their respective water trails. The Northern Forest Canoe Trail is the nation’s longest inland water trail, stretching from Old Forge, NY to Fort Kent, ME. The 375-mile Maine Island Trail, the nation’s first recreational water trail, extends from the New Hampshire border to Cobscook Bay and the Canadian Border.

The show starts at 7:00 pm at Hannaford Hall. All proceeds benefit the Northern Forest Canoe Trail and the Maine Island Trail Association. Tickets are $12 in advance ($10 for students) and can be purchased online at Tickets are $15 at the door.


The Maine Island Trail Association is a membership organization dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of the wild islands of coastal Maine. With 25 years of community-building, stewardship and education, the organization has developed a model of sustainable recreation and created America’s first recreational water trail. (There are now over 500 water trails, according to the American Canoe Association.) The 375-mile waterway extends from the New Hampshire border to Cobscook Bay and the Canadian Border. Current members enjoy access to Trail properties for day use or overnight visits in return for observing low-impact recreation techniques and guidelines outlined in MITA's annual Trail Guide. For more information contact MITA at 207-761-8225, or visit .

The Northern Forest Canoe Trail is a 740-mile inland paddling trail tracing historic travel routes across New York, Vermont, Québec, New Hampshire, and Maine. Northern Forest Canoe Trail, Inc. is internationally regarded as the preeminent water trail organization in North America, and connects people to the Trail's natural environment, human heritage, and contemporary communities by stewarding, promoting, and providing access to canoe and kayak experiences along this route. To learn more about paddling the NFCT, to become a member, and to purchase a guidebook and maps, visit  or call 802-496-2285.