BOISE — The new documentary film, “Farmland,” will be shown at the Egyptian Theatre in Boise Aug. 6 and will be followed by a panel of farmers who will discuss important agricultural issues and answer questions from the audience.
The 87-year-old Egyptian Theater in the heart of Boise’s downtown district can seat 747 people.
Organizers of the Idaho showing hope to attract a large urban audience so they can learn more about agriculture from the film and the panelists.
“We want the general public to attend the event, not just the agricultural community,” said Idaho State Department of Agriculture employee Chanel Tewalt. “We want people who don’t know anything about agricultural practices to show up, meet Idaho farmers and be able to ask questions.”
ISDA Director Celia Gould said organizers hope to attract a diverse audience for the event, which starts at 6 p.m.
“We hope this event serves as a catalyst for greater understanding and communication between the agricultural community and consumers,” Gould said in a news release.
The film, which provides viewers a first-hand glimpse into the lives of six young farmers and ranchers across the nation, was produced by Oscar and Emmy award winning director James Moll.
Moll visited the farmers several times throughout the year and chronicled their ups and downs.
In a news release, Moll said audiences will hear thoughts and opinions about agriculture, “but not from me, and not from a narrator. They’re from the mouths of the farmers and ranchers themselves.”
When Tewalt, a rancher, found out the feature-length film wasn’t scheduled to be shown in Idaho, she reached out to Idaho’s farming community, which raised the $8,000 needed to bring it here.
The money was donated by groups representing Idaho potato, sugar beet, wheat, barley, beef, dairy, fruit and vegetable and dry bean growers.
“We think it’s very important for folks to better understand the role of agriculture, particularly in Idaho,” said Frank Muir, president and CEO of the Idaho Potato Commission. “We’re very supportive of helping folks here in Idaho better understand farmers.”
The panel will include producers who represent several farm commodities. This will give the audience a chance to hear from and ask questions of Idaho farmers and ranchers, Tewalt said.
“We want them to meet the people growing and raising their food, make that personal connection and see the face of Idaho agriculture,” she said. “People don’t know farming but they want to know farmers and this gives them that opportunity.”
Tickets for the event can be reserved by calling (208) 332-8502 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. A suggested donation of $5 will be accepted at the door and proceeds will go to the Idaho Foodbank.