Updated: Local filmmakers present documentary at Birch Bay State Park

By Alyssa Pitcher

The Birch Bay State Park Interpretive Programs will host a free screening of the documentary film “Fragile Waters” on Sunday, April 26, starting at 2 p.m. at the BP Heron Center. Birch Bay resident Shari Macy and Blaine resident Rick Wood codirected the film.

The two will be in attendance at the screening for a question and answer session. The Whisky Minstrels band will play a mini concert in support of the film’s first screening in Birch Bay.

“Our main mission is to tell the story of the decline of southern resident killer whales and Chinook salmon,” Wood said. The film examines the health of the Salish Sea, extending from the north end of Georgia Strait to the south end of the Puget Sound, and its impact on orca whales and salmon.

The documentary has been featured as an official selection in four film festivals. It debuted at the Friday Harbor Film Festival and recently won “Film of the Year” at the Dolphin and Whale Film Festival in Dana Point, California. It has been screened at ITSA Back to Nature Film Festival in Sonora, California, and Enviro Film Festival in Dublin, Ireland.

“So far, things have been amazing for us and the film,” Wood said. Especially, he said, since it is a non-commercial film created on a crowd-funded micro budget and put together by volunteers.

“Fragile Waters” has been on tour since late January. It has been screened in 10 locations along the west coast from Victoria to Dana Point, California. According to Wood, two high schools in Redmond, Oregon put together three-week educational units based around issues presented in the documentary. Wood estimates that approximately 2,000 people have seen the film.

Upcoming tour stops include four locations in Florida, as well as Chicago, Minneapolis, Seattle and Oak Harbor. The documentary will also have two tour stops in France, made possible by an animal rights activism group called French Connection that raised funds to bring it overseas.

The screening at BP Heron Center is free, but attendees will need a Discover Pass to park.

Correction: The original article identified the Birch Bay Chamber of Commerce as the hosts of the film screening. 

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