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National award-winning video showing locally

ATHENS, Ohio (Sept. 13, 2005) -- "A Forest Returns," Ora Anderson's account of the beginning of the Wayne National Forest and winner of two national film festival awards, will be shown at several public library branches throughout Athens County, Sept. 19-Oct. 6, and at the Paul Bunyan Festival in Nelsonville, Oct. 7-9. Local producers Jean Andrews and Steve Fetsch will be on hand to answer questions and discuss their project.

This 30-minute video has been awarded top honors including First Place-Best Documentary at the 2005 Appalachian Film Festival in Huntington, W.Va., and it tied for First Place-Non-Broadcast Film at the Montana CINE (Cultures and Issues of Nature and the Environment) International Film Festival taking place later this month in Missoula, Mont.

Ora Anderson, a 93-year-old Athens area resident, nature writer, and radio commentator, was a journalist living in southeastern Ohio during the Great Depression. In "A Forest Returns," he recalls the environmental and social conditions that led to the establishment of the Wayne National Forest. The 30-minute video illustrates man's evolving relationship with the land through Anderson's personal account, historical photographs, comparative "then and now" imagery, and features music composed and performed by regional musician Bruce Dalzell of Stewart.

"Producer Jean Andrews has captured an important slice of Ohio's New Deal experience," said Pat Williamsen of the Ohio Humanities Council. Mining historian Richard Francaviglia described the video as "a superb portrayal of environmental change in southeastern Ohio. 'A Forest Returns' confirms how interesting local environmental history is, and how inspirationally it can be portrayed on film."

Ohio Landscape Productions, Inc., a non-profit 501c3 organization, produces documentaries that explore the historical and cultural landscape of Ohio. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of "A Forest Returns" will be donated to two organizations located within the Wayne National Forest region: Rural Action, Inc., which promotes watershed restoration efforts through economic, social, and environmental justice, and Little Cities of Black Diamonds Council, which is keeping alive local stories and traditions about history, culture, and the environment.

Dates, times and venues are as follows:

  • Monday, Sept. 19, at 2 p.m., The Plains Public Library, The Plains
  • Tuesday, Sept. 20, at 11 a.m., Athens Public Library, Athens
  • Tuesday, Sept. 20, at 1 p.m., Coolville Public Library, Coolville
  • Thursday, Sept. 22, at 2 p.m., Athens Public Library, Athens
  • Friday, Sept. 23, at 4 p.m., Chauncey Public Library, Chauncey
  • Monday, Sept. 26, at 8 p.m., Athens Public Library, Athens
  • Thursday, Sept. 29, at 7 p.m., Wells Library, Albany
  • Friday, Sept. 30, at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m., Nelsonville Public Library, Nelsonville
  • Monday, Oct. 3, at 11 a.m., Glouster Public Library
  • Thursday, Oct. 6, at 6:30 p.m., Glouster Public Library
  • Friday-Sunday, Oct. 7-9, several screenings throughout the day at the Wayne National Forest Exhibit (located in the Student Center), Paul Bunyan Festival, Hocking College, Nelsonville; times will be announced closer to the event date.

A DVD copy of the video will be available at each branch of the Nelsonville Public Library. The video is for sale through Ohio Landscape Productions, Inc. at www.ohiolandscape.org or by sending $24.35 for each DVD ($32.88 for VHS) to Ohio Landscape Productions, Inc., P.O. Box 1257, Athens, Ohio. DVDs can also be purchased beginning Sept. 19 at the Wayne National Forest Athens Ranger District office; ROCKY Outdoor Gear Store in Nelsonville; and The Dairy Barn Arts Center and the Athens County Historical Society & Museum in Athens.

For more information, e-mail producer Jean Andrews at andrews@ohiolandscape.org or call (740) 593-6968 or producer Steve Fetsch at (740) 594-7848.

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Media Contact: Video Producer Jean Andrews, (740) 593-6968 or andrews@ohiolandscape.org, or Video Producer Steve Fetsch, (740) 594-7848 or gofetsch@frognet.net

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