In all of my early years and later adult years, there has always been that season slump between the holidays and the first significant days of spring.
By Ross Reeder
My birthday and the occasional excitement of a day of skiing brought brief burst of excitement, but then it was back to the grind. There was a definite lull until the next “big thing.” Winter and early sunset add to that overall feeling of despair.
That all changed when I started a job here in Ogden some seven years ago. The tail end of January came the phenomenon I now know as the Sundance Film Festival. Don’t get me wrong; I have been in the hospitality industry for many years. I was well aware of the Sundance Film Festival in the past; however, it was just limited to reading about premiers in the paper and what star was spotted where. In my current capacity as Director of Sales & Marketing for the Peery’s Egyptian Theater, an Official Venue of the Sundance Film Festival, I am indirectly involved in coordinating this massive event every year.
From the first day deliveries arrive to the theater box office, to the opening day of the first screening, excitement builds. I anxiously await the first notice of the online film guide. When it finally comes out, I scan it to see what will be screened here in Ogden. The excitement builds when I walk through the lobby and see the lines of folks waiting to pick up pre-ordered tickets and watch others scan the large poster hanging near the box office hoping to score tickets.
One of my favorite photos hangs in the office of the local Convention & Visitors Bureau. It is a photo of the exterior of the Peery’s Egyptian Theater at night with a line of folks outside as snow falls around them. This to me says it all… This is the “Winter of my Content,” with apologies to Shakespeare.
Although I am usually busy helping man the concessions stand during the actual screenings, my excitement is not diminished. I am among those folks who are experiencing Sundance for themselves, some for the first time and others are old hat. They chat in line of the merits of the previous screening or perhaps one from years past that made it big.
In addition to working with the crew at Sundance, I have been privileged enough to work with Downtown Ogden Inc. in planning their Sundance Social. It takes place after a designated screening during the week. Often times the director of the movie appears at the social to discuss their film. Our staff always has fun in creating a theme to accompany the screening. I look forward to another great year this year, now I just have to find something to fill that down time from the end of the Sundance Film Festival to the Memorial Day weekend.