A backstage look at Whistler history, future 

Local stories documented for Celebration 2010

What: Community Now Short Film

When: Thursday, Feb. 23, 7 p.m.

Where: MY Millennium Place

Tickets: Free

Whistler history dusts itself off as the tales of many come together on film to give a backstage pass to what lies beyond the gloss of our mountain Disneyland.

From the just graduated to 20-somethings, Whistlerites share their community stories as part of the Whistler Museum and Archives’ Community Now: Year Two documentary, which premieres Thursday, Feb. 23 at 7 p.m. at MY Millennium Place.

"I think it creates a legacy for the community," said museum curator Cheryl Green of the four-film project.

"A lot of the time, we focus on the history — the pioneers and resort development. These films show us moving towards 2010, so we can show the world we have a strong community here; we are not just a town made up of transient workers and tourists. We have a diverse, interesting and very real community here."

This year’s Community Now 25-minute film focuses on Whistler’s youth, from ages 18 to 30, the second of four films leading up to 2010. Last year’s film focused on the senior demographic, and the last two films will present the stories of adults and children. The four short films will be edited into a full-length film screened at an Olympic gala reception.

Filmmaker Brian Hockenstein is the creative force behind the project. The seasoned snowboard filmmaker and photographer is a familiar face around town: his credits include Whistler Cable 6, Resort TV, Five One Four Video and Under Exposed Media, just to name a few.

The artistic vision of the documentary remains simple with the stories of 12 people taking centre stage.

"I was surprised how passionate and how much these people care about the community even if they don’t see themselves being here for the rest of their lives," Hockenstein said.

"I had hoped to come up with something more fancy for the format this year, but the things that people had to say were just so interesting I used a similar style. What they have to say is the real story."

Get the insider on Whistler from the people who know best at the Celebration 2010 free screening. Space is limited. Call 604-932-2019 for a free ticket.

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