Pride of the Ocean’s first historic LGBT Film Cruise

Posted: December 4, 2009 in -, John Scagliotti
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From:
John Scagliotti, member of the National Gay and Lesbian Journalist Association’s documentary caucus and programmer of Kopkind’s CineSlam, Vermont’s LGBT Fest of Shorts.

AP headline: “Economy grows in 3Q, signals end of recession”

We are helping do our part by announcing a $250 reduction for Pride of the Ocean’s first historic LGBT Film Cruise (benefit for Kopkind’s CineSlam, VT’s LGBT shorts festival) for registering before Dec 20th for the May 30th 2010 embarkation from New York City (where we will be commemorating the first pride event 40 years ago: The Christopher Street Liberation March (June 1970) . Don’t forget to invite some NY State Senators to join you .) www.prideoftheocean.com

Well that’s the Associated Press’s headline a few weeks ago. However for those of us who oversee small non-profits, (especially with missions that focus on alternative media), we were struggling before the recession and expect to continue that struggle when it is over. In fact, struggle is part of what we gladly do and it actually helps us come up with new (some say historic) ideas to serve and survive . (I created “In the Life” in the midst of the 1991 recession and it’s still running on PBS 19 years later!) But to struggle we need your help as there’s too much important work yet to be done —just ask Rush Limbaugh and the folks who voted for California’s Prop 8 or senators in the New York State Assembly!

And here’s a creative way to support small rural LGBT film festivals and be part of history at the same time. Pride of the Ocean is doing a benefit film festival (this one is sponsoring our Vermont GLBT Festival of Shorts, Kopkind’s CineSLAM). The cruise takes place next May 30th on board “The Norwegian Dawn” and Betsy Kalin (LA filmmaker of Hearts Cracked Open) and I are programming seven days of LGBT films from the past 40 years in honor of the 40th anniversary of the first Pride Events called at that time “The Christopher Street Liberation March”. In fact we embark on our ship just a little ways from Christopher Street in New York City.

There will be lots of struggling (creative) filmmakers on board (thanks to a grant from the Chessie Foundation) and major donors who help us make films, as well as a lot of folks who are part of the glbt film world including professors, festival directors , journalists, critics, and people who just love to watch films – that’s the audience that has made our filmmaking a joy! This is a great crowd to be part of during our screenings, group dinners, cocktail parties and seminars. For example, Susi Walsh, from the Center for Independent Documentary, is doing a seminar on board for donors to films on the ins and outs of tax benefits of fiscal sponsorship. This will be a great crowd to also enjoy some of the off board activities in Bermuda. Plus some fantastic “straight” people are coming too as they know that LGBT films are amazing in their universal appeal — at least the ones we are picking like Dean Hammer and Joe Wilson’s “Out In The Silence” or Cheryl Dunye’s “Watermelon Woman”!

It’s an important time to help and why not with a smart crowd of people who know how vital history is when it comes to tracking just how far our human rights struggle has changed the world. So join us. It’s easy to register on line at our website www.pridedoftheocean.com and choose your cabin. And save $250 if your register before December 20th.

Away we go (on the same boat)! Sincerely,

John Scagliotti, co-programmer of Pride of the Ocean, documentarian filmmaker of Before Stonewall, and programmer of Kopkind’s CineSLAM. (see trailer for new film to have sneak preview on board here: www.beforehomosexuals.com

PS: If you are an angel (a donor to films) that wants to help a struggling filmmaker, why not also purchase a cabin on board for one of your favorite filmmakers so they can be part of this interesting crowd and historic occasion. It’s important for them to be there with you and us. You can make it happen. If you don’t have their address, I’ll try to track them down for you to tell them about your offer… just email me at stonewal –at — sover.net

PPS: Please forward to colleagues or community lists who you think would be fun (and smart) to be with you and us on this historic benefit cruise. And make someone a nice holiday present.

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