International Freeski Festival shows 11 films this weekend 

Free flicks in Whistler Olympic Plaza and three ticketed screenings at The Rainbow Theatre

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Eleven of the year's best freeski films will be shown this weekend in Whistler.

The second annual International Freeski Film Festival comes to the resort alongside the legendary Turkey Sale.

On Friday, Oct. 10, there will be a free outdoor screening of four films: Meanwhile in Canada, Elements, After Glow and Twenty. They screen at Whistler Olympic Plaza starting at 6:30 p.m.

This is followed by an old-school rapper hip-hop party sponsored by iF3. It takes place at The Longhorn Saloon at 10 p.m.

On Saturday, Oct. 11, six films will be shown at The Rainbow Theatre. The Doorstep Project, The Malibu Fable and Burn are being shown in the first presentation, at 2:30 p.m., followed by Pretty Faces and Ten and Two at 5 p.m., and The Recruitment and Less at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets for Saturday's screenings are from $17 and can be purchased at www.whistler.com/events.

Later that evening, the Red Bull x K2 Sean Pettit Rocker Party takes place at Garfinkel's at 10 p.m.

Margaret Cho confirmed for Whistler Pride Week

American comedian Margaret Cho will be performing during Whistler Pride Week in January.

She will be performing on Wednesday, Jan. 28 at the Whistler Conference Centre at 8 p.m.

Cho, known for her political and social satire, is a strong supporter of gay rights with a big fan base in LGBT communities in Canada and the U.S.

"We're really, really excited. Ecstatic," said organizer Dean Nelson. "We are trying to grow our midweek attendance and I think having such a strong performer midweek is going to be absolutely amazing."

Supporting her is comedian Selene Luna, who has appeared in Cho's reality TV series The Cho Show.

Nelson said they were able to book Cho and Luna thanks to $25,000 in RMI funding from the Resort Municipality of Whistler.

Tickets start at $50 and will be available shortly on gaywhistler.com/event/comedy/.

Nelson said another event the festival is offering, for the first time, is a mini-film festival on Monday, Jan. 26 and Tuesday, Jan. 27 at The Rainbow Theatre.

The two films on offer will be comedies Bollywood Beats (2009) and Tennessee Queer (2012).

"It should be a lot of fun," said Nelson. "We've been listening to our audience. At the start of the week we have that older demographic who are not so interested in the party and dance scene. They are looking for alternate programming."

Authors in School back for second year

Novelist Joseph Boyden and poet Katherina Vermette have been confirmed for the 2014 Authors in School program.

The program involves 350 Grade 11 and 12 students in English classes in the Sea to Sky corridor, from Squamish to Mt. Currie. The students will receive books by one of the two guest authors and attend readings by Boyden and Vermette at Whistler Secondary School on Oct. 20.

Boydon won Canada Reads in 2014 for his novel The Orenda. Vermette won the 2013 Governor General Literary Award for her collection North End Love Songs.

This is the second year of the program. Last year's program saw novelist Richard Wagamese speak to students.

The Authors in Schools Program is organized by the Whistler Writers Festival in conjunction with the Whistler Arts Council, with funding support from the Whistler Blackcomb Foundation.

All-girl ski movie for Day of the Girl

Pretty Faces, an all-female ski and adventure sports film, will get its Whistler premiere as part of International Day of the Girl at The Rainbow Theatre on Thursday, Oct. 9, at 6:30 p.m.

This is a fundraising event to benefit the Howe Sound Women's Centre and other women's organizations. Along with Pretty Faces will be a discussion on how sports can close the confidence gap for girls.

Speakers include Sue Graham, Darcy Turenne and Megan Bulloch.

The first showing is now sold out but organizers are considering a second viewing of the film. Visit www.whistler.com/events for more information.

Speaking of Whistler Olympic Plaza

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