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HMD Report: Portland, Oregon 2013

HMD Report: Portland, Oregon

Event Venue: Northwest Film Center (downtown Portland) in collaboration with the Oregon Historical Society.
Event time (screening): noon-5
Event time (inspection): same
Total Audience: 35
Number of people bringing films: 6 (not including films from the Oregon Historical Society)

Films screened by Gauge (estimated):
8mm: 10
Super 8: 6
16mm: 8

9 Volunteers:
Jennifer Keyser
Mia Ferm
Kristin Hole
Thomas Matlock
Tom Robinson
Chelsea Mohr
Veronica Vichit-Vadakan
Melinda Kowalska
Matthew Cowan

Press (pre-event and post-event):

  • Small posts in events section of Oregon Herald and the Oregonian.
  • Blogs, Facebook, and email lists.
  • Website: homemoviedaypdx.tumblr.com
  • Brief mention in conjunction with a KATU news story on 8mm film reels.
  • Camera crew (of one) on site day of from KATU News Portland (no sign of story as of Monday 27th)

Report submitted by:
Matthew Cowan

HMD Portland 2013 was a success with 35 people throughout the afternoon with most of them staying for the full 4.5+ hours of screening. If anything, some nice weather kept the turn out slightly less than could be expected. Cookies, brownies and donated Stumptown coffee were all enjoyed along with looped video footage of a recent NFPF preservation of Raymond Rogers 35mm home movies in the lobby near inspection tables. We had three projectors set up in the screening room and they were either running or being threaded at any given time. The majority of film shown was on 8mm – with a surprising amount of 16mm brought in and a surprisingly little amount of super 8mm. Of the six to seven people who brought in film most brought in 5-10+ reels. In one instance a couple of folks drove up an hour plus from Salem with a whole crate full of films. In addition to the films brought in by the public we also showed a variety of home movies from the permanent collection of the Oregon Historical Society – to start things off as well as fill in as we went along. For the most part, from 12:15 until 5:00pm we were continuously projecting films to an engaged audience. Most films brought in were projectable with the most common issue being a lack of head leader. Bingo was played, tears were shed and fists were pumped. Prizes included Stumptown coffee, movie passes to local theaters and historic prints from the OHS collection. I would say we had, roughly, 10 bingos throughout the afternoon. There was also a news camera man on site for the first 2 hours of the day from a local station. He was able to shoot some footage off the screen and conducted a few interviews. No indication of when (or if) the story would run (but he did seem to enjoy himself).

Films came from all over (many from outside of Oregon), including:

  • amazing 16mm silent footage of 1930’s Indiana farmers – including one segment in particular of rocking musicians and a jiving lady dancer. Also includes train travel, with stops, presumably to visit these Indiana relations. In fact the whole 400’ reel is quite good. Definitely an audience favorite. Worth considering, in whole or part, for future HMD compilations or use.
  • a 16mm Vancouver Amateur Ham Radio club production.
  • Making Whoopee – a 1930s amateur home production – including inter-titles – of one man’s trip in to the big city and his lady relations.
  • minstrel show from 1950’s Minnesota.
  • pretty good 8mm kids film from from 1960s – graveyard stop motion animation involving skeletons, graves and ghouls (just in time for Halloween).
  • ca. 1960s super 8mm from coastal NJ family footage – brought in by a mother who wanted to screen it for her daughter also in the audience.
  • various footage of Rose parade, downtown portland, oregon coast, Columbia river gorge, Yellowstone, golf, etc.
  • 8mm footage of 1960s stock car racing in Alabama (Montgomery).
  • one volunteer’s first birthday as well as a Halloween at age 3.
  • Jantzen swimwear promotional film (the history of the swimsuit).
  • beautiful 16mm color reversal of the Seattle expo – including space needle, pavilion and rides (this gentleman has 25 400’ cans of 16mm and the 4-5 we watched were all well shot and of interest).
  • many more, good and bad and boring…

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