This article was posted originally in the Sault Star on Aug 24, 2021 10:10 AM EST by Brian Kelly reposted with permission.
COVID-19 is keeping Summer Shadows in the dark for a second consecutive year.
Free outdoor screenings of family films started in 2005 and moved to Bellevue Park in 2008.
The pandemic spiked Summer Shadows in 2020. Board member of parent group Shadows of the Mind Film Festival met online in late July and decided not to show movies at the downtown park again this year.
“We’ve never had less than 100 people at our outdoor screenings,” said co-director Bill MacPherson. Step 3 of Roadmap to Reopen Ontario allows up to 100 people at outdoor events. Screening organizers didn’t anticipate the province easing restrictions beyond Step 3 during the summer months.
“We felt (cancelling) was the prudent thing,” said MacPherson.
Most attendees are under 12, a group that can’t be vaccinated against COVID-19.
“How do you enforce social distancing?” said MacPherson. “There’s so many access points to the park. We didn’t want to have to put it upon ourselves to enforce any kind of social distancing. How you do turn people away when they’re coming over the nolls and through the park?”
Shadows organizers considered screening films at a downtown site after deciding not to proceed at Bellevue Park.
“It just didn’t work out this year,” said MacPherson.
Films shown at Summer Shadows have included Despicable Me, Up and WALL-E.
“We’re itching to get back to showing movies,” said MacPherson.
Plans are being made for a scaled-down Shadows of the Mind Film Festival in early 2022.
Bell Let’s Talk Day takes place on January 28th this year. Bell Let’s Talk has been an important and dedicated sponsor and partner to Shadows for many years.
Although Shadows is cancelled this season, we remain committed to bringing conversations on mental health and addictions to the forefront.
Provided below is a link to a free Mental Health film series that will be available online for free until January 28th.
For more information on Bell Let’s Talk, head to: https://letstalk.bell.ca/
From all of us here at Shadows Film Festival, stay safe and stay informed! We hope to see you soon.
Shadows of the Mind Film Festival regretfully announces the cancellation of our February 2021 festival due to COVID-19.
The Shadows team extends a special message of hope to the many people living in isolation during this time. We have compiled a list of our recommended best 10 films over the past decade and invite everyone to check out these titles.
You can also find all of our other previous films by going into our Film Archives.
If you are interested in accessing other great movies and documentaries check out these two sites.