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Decade of Adventure Film Fest a ‘celebration of sports’

Linda Bottjer
Little Jon Flip, left, and Todd Offenbacher have fun running the show Saturday at MontBleu.
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There are film fest like Cannes, Sundance and Telluride which feature red carpets, mega stars and hordes of paparazzi.

Then there is the Tahoe Adventure Film Fest.

“We are a complete event,” said Todd Offenbacher, founder of festival now celebrating its 10th year. “We offer everything from midget entertainers to dancers and drag queens in the show around the films.”

Describing the event as a “celebration of sports,” Offenbacher acknowledges it is almost a spoof on the more high-toned film festivals the TAFF tried to emulate during its early years only to realize its true calling.

There is no doubt high energy action is the keystone where upon entering the showroom of the MontBleu Resort Casino and Spa in Stateline starting at 6:30 p.m.

Big screen images from Portland, Maine-based Aurora Photos highlight the drama of meeting Mother Nature in any season or sport from snowboarding to mountain biking.

Always a popular attraction, Little Jon Flip is a little person with the ability to delight with back flips and his rendition of the worm.

Other performers include go-go dancers and a DJ to rock the house prior to the films’ kickoff at 7:30 p.m.

Adrenaline junkies will thrill to “Race to the Nose” by Sender Films.

The 24-minute movie follows Dean Potter and X Games gold medalist, Hans Florine as they compete for the numero uno spot of being the fastest climber Yosemite’s El Capitan. The goal is to accomplish 31 pitches in under three hours.

It is an apt description to call Matt Gerdes the birdman of sports action films. His “Long-lining” film comes from his personal collection of films and shows him “flying” in a wing suit by not only descending but also occasionally gaining elevation as well.

The laws of physics never apply to adventure biker Danny MacAskill. His jaunt last year from Edinburgh to the Isle of Skye was documented as he pirouetted over highway markers, bridges and off the sides of white-washed cottages.

This year his gravity-defying wheelies are found across an industrial park in “Industrial Revolutions.”

Cory Richards last February became the first American to summit a 8,000-meter mountain in the winter.

The life-changing and life-threatening journey in Pakistan was documented in award-winning film “Cold.”

2011 also brought tragedy to the Lake Tahoe family of outdoor enthusiasts when ski mountaineer Kip Garre, and his girlfriend, Allison Kreutzen, perished in a late summer avalanche.

The TAFF will hold a tribute to Garre and his former employer Points North Heli Adventures in Alaska have donated a trip to be given out during the intermission’s raffle drawings.

Other prizes include passes from area ski resorts and sports clothing.

Once the films end and the smell of popcorn still lingers in the air an after-party blasts off for everyone from athlete to festival attendee and filmmakers aged 21 years and above.

The Hatchett Brothers band “Fortress” will supply the hard-pounding rhythms of 1980s heavy metal in the Blu Nightclub. Admission is $10.


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