Waterfront Film Festival, a staple of film-arts in West Michigan since 1999, recently announced the opening of its new screening and event venue in Holland. Their new headquarters/theatre/workshop, is on Columbia Avenue, near downtown Holland. They are introducing their new facility with a Grand Opening film and celebration.

Thursday, June 22, the Grand Opening will feature a multiple Audience Award winning favorite film as well as a Meet & Greet Reception. The event is aimed to help bring awareness to a rare genetic disorder that affects a local wheelchair-bound woman who also was recently diagnosed with Stage IV cancer. The film is “THE
ATAXIAN” – an inspiring documentary about two guys affected with the degenerative neuromuscular disorder Friedreich’s ataxia who race across the country on bikes to raise money and awareness for the cause.

Holland resident Holly LeBlanc who was diagnosed with the disorder over 20 years ago contacted Waterfront Film Festival about showing the film. WFF Co-Founder Hopwood DePree said, “This is exactly the type of programming we are passionate about offering to the community: An entertaining film that can bring awareness to a worthy cause." The film cast is expected to be in attendance, including Holly LeBlanc, for the screening and after-party.

Waterfront Film Festival will donate the proceeds from the fundraiser ticket sales to raising awareness and finding a cure for Friedreich’s ataxia.

Seating is limited so advance tickets are recommended. Tickets are priced at $25 to attend the film and Fundraiser Reception at 7 p.m., Thursday, June 22 and 7 p.m. and Friday, June 23. An encore matinee screening on Saturday June 24 11 a.m. will be offered for $10.

Since 1999, the non-profit Waterfront Film Organization has been offering unique film experiences, education and opportunities. Based in West Michigan, Waterfront originally had a 4-day festival each summer, hosting Midwest premieres of Academy Award winning and nominated films, but today they have evolved to having their own facility that will feature individual screenings with an expectation of year-round events.

For more information on Waterfront Film Organization visit www.WaterfrontFilm.org

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