Estes Park Film Festival 2008
Heart & Soil” —
A film that has been called “a love song to farmers,” “Heart & Soil” will be screened during the Estes Park Film Festival on Thursday, Sept. 11, at 7 p.m. “Heart & Soil,” a 45-minute family documentary, takes its audience on a journey into the rich landscape and lives of small scale farming, the bustling energy of farmers’ markets, and farm-to-school programs.

“It’s a microcosmic look at life on a farm today. It could be anywhere in the world, but it’s all within a 200-mile radius of my home in southwestern Colorado,” said filmmaker Mara LeGrand of Durango. “The farmers in the film are a testament that a rural, farming life still exists or is being resurrected on a small but significant scale, where people are not only supporting their own families but helping feed others.”

“Heart & Soil” follows dyed-in-denim-and-dust mid-size farmers who practice conventional farming techniques and need large, if not global, market outlets. It also visits with the new breed of farmers who work small plots of land and whose veggies, fruits, flowers, eggs, cheese, plants and organic meats fill the tables and bins at local and regional farmers’ markets.

“My intention was to take the audience into the lives of farmers doing the work and living connected to nature,” said LeGrand. “I wanted to draw sketches of people relating to the land that audiences might be more likely to remember than statistics or political talking points. I am pleased to have grown a film that will nourish and sustain efforts toward a local food system through many seasons to come.”

The film was an official selection and requested by the Nashville Film Festival, Indie Spirit, Taos Mountain Film, Santa Fe Film Festival, Vancouver International Mountain Film Festival, the San Luis Obispo Film Festival, Telluride Sustainability Conference and Telluride Mountain Film Festival, Hearts & Minds Film Festival in Delaware, Jacob Burns Film Center in New York, and the Idaho Film and Television’s Spud Fest. It has shown to sell-out crowds in Durango and Pagosa Springs and is scheduled to screen in Oklahoma, Utah and other locations across the country.

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