Telluride Mountain Film 2011

Mountain Film Telluride 2011, Colorado. USA

Welcome to the place I like to call home…the place that feeds my soul, whether or not I am in it’s actual presence. Even though I am not in Telluride full time, the energy and community in this high altitude mountain town brings me joy and great inner peace. I have been traveling to Telluride since winter 2003 and spend roughly 6 weeks a year in my happy place. I knew this trip for my first Mountain Film would be very different than the others… brought everything full circle.

Telluride Mountain Film Festival 2011

Social media formed the backbone to this festival with an all ready strong spine. In it’s 32nd year Mountain Film has grown into a leader in the pack. It now travels around the world but it has it’s roots in this box canyon hence, “Born and Raised in Telluride.” From Twitter, to Facebook to my new favorite Instagram (you can follow me there @marlameridith)…social media was on fire. Another great way to stay connected & hear about the latest schedule updates.

Telluride Mountain Film Festival 2011

As I look back at my tweets from Mountain Film I notice they set up a sturdy outline for this post. You will see them throughout this post with the hashtag #mtnfilm. Let’s set the stage with this:

“When you touch nature it touches you back.” Take note of what is under your feet. #mtnfilm via Katie Lee eco-activist 5.27.2011

Mountain Film Telluride 2011, Colorado. USA

“High altitude brings high achievements.” via David Holbrooke #mtnfilm Festival Director. Lovely tribute to his father Richard today. 5.28.2011

David Holbrook, the festival director stated it perfectly during the tribute for his father the late Richard Holbrook. Richard was one of America’s most important Diplomats and peace makers. He was a Telluride local who apparently cruised around town in his long johns. Telluride holds no judgements. Come as you are and people will love you.

Mountain Film Telluride 2011, Colorado. USA

“Awareness into Action”was the festival theme this year. Reaching within to reach out to others was my take. Once we become aware of what is around us we can take steps to help others. Taking appropriate risks and chances with ourselves can bring us to a higher state.

Black Telluride Baseball cap with camera bag

I explained to a friend of mine that Telluride sets me straight. It peaces out my mind and takes this high energy girl to a calmer zone. A zone where mind, body, creativity, passion and drive become one. The mountains encourage me to find my center. Spirituality is heightened and I feel a closer connection to my higher power. After speaking to many people at the festival I came to realize they felt the same.

Buddhist prayer flags on art gallery in Colorado Rocky Mountain town

Every conversation I had with attendees, locals, photographers, athletes and film makers was filled with enthusiasm for life. People kept asking what was my favorite part of the schedule? All I could do was smile. The movies, symposiums, coffee talks, gallery walks – all of them painted the big picture. Each element of the festival brought a unique opportunity to witness life fueled with desire to really LIVE. Thinking outside the box, not being trapped in the material is the essence of this experience.

Red Brick hotel Building in historic mining town Telluride

Environmentalists, activists, creative thinkers, citizens of humanity. That is #mtnfilm 5.28.2011

Below is Aaron Huey. An exceptional humanitarian and photographer who has lived with and documents the lives of the Native American Indian tribe, the Lakota. He is passionate about spreading the word about the injustice of these people who were forcibly moved off their land and confined to the Pine River Reservation in South Dakota.

Telluride Mountain Film 2011 Aaron Huey Photographer

The schedule is very full and it is hard to see everything, but you do what you can. Some amazing film screenings I had the chance to see are listed here, please view the links to read more about them. Click here for the full list of films.

  • Cold – See what happens when mountaineers climb 8000 meter Gasherbrum II, in the winter.
  • Deadliest Catch – I cannot believe how these fishermen risk their lives to bring us…..crab?!
  • Happy – The thrill of discovering what keeps us happy in life.
  • The Baffin Babes – 4 hot chicks ski across 1200km in the frigid Canadian Arctic region, the Baffin Islands
  • Truck Farm – Did you know you can plant a garden in your pick-up truck? Amazing!
  • Yosemite Falls High-Line – Walking a tightrope over the raging Yosemite Falls. Freaking awesome!

I attended the awe-inspiring musical performance by Prudence Mabhena. She has the voice of an angel.

Prudence Mabhena sings at the Palm Theater in Telluride, Colorado

Did I mention there was ice cream?

People standing in line in Telluride for ice cream near clock tower.

The lightheartedness of the Ice Cream Social sweetens the experience for more community bonding and light hearted banter. Mountain Film plays up the importance of sustainability. Throughout the festival participants are asked to bring their own cups, bowls, etc. It is a low impact festival with no single use containers at all. I was thrilled to finally attend an event with no swag bag.

Giant buddhist prayer wheel at Mountain Film festival

This community of like-minded people all in deeply calm, satisfied flowing states is what stands out the most from this magical Memorial Day weekend in the Rockies. Perhaps you can make the trek yourself sometime. It will change your life and charge you with energy, action and awareness.

@tellurideinside Awesome meeting you guys tonight. “Happy” was great huh! I stopped by the adrenaline films too – amazing. 5.28.2011

Telluride Mountain Film Festival 2011 - Night Movies in Town Park

They showed the super active “adrenaline” film screenings at night in Town Park’s Base Camp Outdoor Theater.

What is your happy place? Have you ever been to a film festival?

For those of you wondering “Where are those recipes?” From time to time I share life changing trips and events with you. My passion is to bridge together active lives with important journeys through food, travel, lifestyle and a healthy, mindful, happy attitude.

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~ Marla Meridith

Join the Conversation

48 thoughts on “Telluride Mountain Film 2011

  1. I love Film Festival and the overall experience of meeting new people through social media, sharing the same interest (abundance of ice creams) etc. Great photos 🙂 I recently attended Florida’s Film Festival and it was amazing! I can of course relate to the fun you are having as well.

    1. Kiran, “sharing the same interests” I take comfort in knowing how many wonderful people are in my life. From family, to friends both real & virtual. It feels amazing to be so connected. That is so cool that you attended a wonderful festival in Florida….I am wondering what kind of films you saw?

  2. What a fantastic adventure for you, Marla. I know how much you love Telluride, and it sounds as though you were able to experience your favorite place in a completely different way.

  3. I love this:

    “I explained to a friend of mine that Telluride sets me straight. It peaces out my mind and takes this high energy girl to a calmer zone. A zone where mind, body, creativity, passion and drive become one. The mountains encourage me to find my center. Spirituality is heightened and I feel a closer connection to my higher power.”


    Where is my happy place? I’m in it right now: Aruba. But headed home tomorrow. It’s so bittersweet going back to reality but I do have some great trips lined up to take my mind off of…the daily grind.

    I am thrilled for you, Marla, that this was everything you had hoped it would be…and more. Based on our emails and chats, I am soooo happy for you!

    The 1st pic of you, btw, looks so good it looks like a fake backdrop. You are glowing and the scenery is breathtaking.

    I love these types of “life” posts. And next year, we need to be posting from the IACP…Penny speaks tonight. Wish I was there!


    1. Averie, I am so happy to know that you too have a safe place you can journey to. A place that makes you grin from ear to ear. It was fun to be in my zone while you were in yours. We always connect on a deep level, but this weekend our email correspondences were extra special. It was fun sorting out issues and sharing excitement with each other. Thanks my friend for always lending an ear and being so thoughtful and intelligent.
      Don’t worry, coming back home to reality will not be so bad – you can always reflect on your happy place to ground you and bring back your center.
      I say we take on the IACP next year too… long as it doesn’t conflict with Mountain Film or Aruba!
      Looking forward to seeing you soon. xo

  4. What a special place! Once upon a time I was a big film buff (and still would be today if my schedule permitted). I can just feel that fresh mountain air in your photos. My special place is probably the La Costa spa. 🙂

    1. Kathy, up until this point I had not sat through a film in quite some time. Having little kids it is difficult to get the time to do stuff like this. Quite frankly I never thought I would be able to sit in a dark theater during the day. I am one who likes to keep moving (as you know)
      This event changed all that. It was nice to take breaks with hikes in between shows. I have been wanting to see this festival for years. It was good to be on my own and only accountable to the the schedule of daily events. Coming home was also wonderful ……. feeling refreshed and enlightened to get back to my hubs and kids. I hope one day you can re-visit your inner film buff too 🙂

  5. My happy place is definitely the beach. I’ve been to beaches from the Pacific, to the Atlantic, Caribbean, and Mediterranean, and in between, every year of my life. It is here that I feel like I can reconnect with myself and nature, and just simply decompress and relax. The sound of the water is so calming, and nothing beats the feeling of sand between my toes!

    Telluride looks beautiful, and I would love to go there someday! Enjoy!

    Melissa B.

  6. It’s all starting to make sense to me now. You really are a Colorado girl! I’m so happy to hear how home sets you still. And if I’m ever planning a trip to CO I’ll be sure to check with you first. What a beautiful festival! I hope I get to see one of my husband’s films there soon!

    1. Brooke, that would be so exciting if one of your hubs movies was shown at Mountain Film or the Telluride Film Festival in September. You need to tell me more about his work when we connect in New Orleans next week. OMG – did I just say “next week??!!” xo

  7. I can really see why you love it so much here, Marla! It looks like the perfect place to reconnect with yourself. Love that theme too!

    1. Leanne, I am wanting to visit the Canadian Rockies again. It is so beautiful there. I have only been to Whistler – never Jasper or Canmore. Banff and Lake Louise are on the list too. Beautiful out that way 🙂

  8. It’s so great to find a place that you adore this much! A place where you really feel is home.

    And what an awesome event! Great photos. It seems like you had an awesome time!

  9. I love Telluride…and Ouray is also up there on my list! I actually love most any mountain town…they are all special & unique in their own way!

    Happy to hear you enjoyed your visit!

    1. Liz, I have not yet visited Ouray. I hear from everyone it is gorgeous. Perhaps one day soon I will do a day trip over there. I hear the hot springs are amazing. The tough part is once I am in Telluride I never wanna step foot in a car 😉 One day… Glad to hear we share passions for those mountains.

    1. You must do it! I plan to return to Mountain Film each year. It will be so fun to catch up with friends and follow the careers of these awesome film makers. I would love to visit some other film festivals too. Let me know if you find one you like.

  10. Wow I am just floored by the beauty of Telluride. Stunning photography! I’d love to visit someday. It reminds me a lot of Banff, Alberta actually…one of my favourite places on earth!

    I love this quote too, ‘When you touch nature it touches you back.” Take note of what is under your feet. #mtnfilm via Katie Lee eco-activist 5.27.2011

    You know its a good quote when it makes you want to run outside immediately!

    1. Angela, I have heard that Banff is breathtaking. A place I must visit some day. I love Canada!
      One thing I dig most about Telluride is I can get all my exercise outside, surrounded by all that beauty. Also cool how different the seasons are, unlike here in SoCal….

  11. Hey Marla,
    What an incredible experience and festival. I’ve spent a lot of time in Colorado, but have never been to Telluride–what’s the matter with me?!? I can tell it would be a new favorite. Fantastic photography in this post!

    1. Thanks Sommer! You gotta get to Telluride. Colorado as a whole is a beautiful state. T-ride is a gem. Often rated one of the most beautiful places in the world. Come next year for film festival! The winter is beyond magical too.

    1. Heather, it is really hard to get a bad angle on this place. Kinda like a mountain super-model 😉 I can’t wait to get back out there in August, my camera will be glued to my side. You would love to do your workouts in Telluride – in that high altitude they are so much more intense!

  12. My favourite film festivals in Canada are:
    Banff Mountain Film Festival ( I have only seen the travelling edition, but Banff and Jasper National Parks are both beautiful)
    Waterwalker Film festival – about paddling and the wild places in our world.

    I love your inspiration both with your spiritual place and photos and your desire to inspire us with healthy and tasty recipes. Thank you!

    1. Awwww, Jenni that is so sweet. I am touched that I could share this experience with you guys. Glad I could help make you feel a part of it!

    1. Sylvia, that sounds like the perfect place to relax, be creative & find your center. I have never been to the South of France. Certainly on the top on my list! I look forward to hearing your stories & seeing your photos from there.

    1. Amanda, I will be there a good part of the summer. Our time there will be very well documented with pictures 🙂 Happy you like ’em.

  13. That festival sound so much fun.I have such a place where I relax & find peace back in India..a tiny state called Shillong-full of scenic views and natural bounty.I love the concept of film screening in open- so joyous & fun!

  14. How cool is that! I could never imagine having an opportunity like that to go to a film festival. Looks like a lot of fun!

    If you check out my blog post this morning I mentioned your name for a little something.