Banff Mountain Film Festival a winner; one more tonight

Marshall High School’s auditorium was nearly full last night for the first of two showings of the Banff Mountain Film Festival’s World Tour. The second show — with different films and videos — is at 7 p.m. tonight at Marshall.

Sunday night’s videos included some amazing action, as these films always do — kayakers descending improbable whitewater and sheer waterfalls from Argentina to Norway, fly-fishing for rainbow trout in Russia’s Kamchatka Peninsula, hang-gliding and surfing New Zealand, climbing in Nepal and more. Nine films i all. It’s a blast to see the action, but it’s also just fun to see the film-making techniques and approaches.

While several of the videos gave viewers thrills, perhaps the most moving was the one documenting Greg Mortenson’s work building schools for girls in Afghanistan. It’s cool to get out and play, but Mortenson’s work reminds us how much difference people can make in other people’s lives if we make commitments.

A big thanks to the Duluth XC Ski Club, which is sponsoring the event along with several local outdoor retailers. Money stays in Duluth for work on Duluth’s trails and for KidSki programs. The club and the shops all will have booths in the lobby, and you can enter raffles for prizes.

Here’s the skinny on tonight’s program. The show starts at 7 p.m. at Marshall School, 1201 Rice Lake Road, with food and beverages available for purchase at 5:30 p.m. from the Brewhouse and Burrito Union. Tickets, $10, are available at Continental Ski & Bike, Duluth Pack, Duluth Running Company, Ski Hut and Trailfitters. At the door, it’s $15. Go to www.banffmountainfestivals.ca or call (218) 340-0443.

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