Author: Lacey Korver
Published May 8, 2014
Ocala is home to many talented minds; creativity runs wild in this town. Whether you happen to stumble upon a few painted horses or maybe you’re taking a stroll in downtown and end up in the middle of the First Friday Art Walk; you’re bound to find endless amounts of creativity in this town. This weekend is no different!
For the 13th year in a row we as a town will be celebrating our students’ creative minds and award winning productions. This Friday, May 9th at 7pm families and students will fill the auditorium at West Port High School for the 13th Annual Marion County Student Media Festival. It is a star-studded event that highlights the outstanding video production work from our local students.
All school year long, students who attend T.V Production classes at their schools, work on various projects for class. These range from Music Videos to Public Service Announcements. Every 4-6 weeks these students, get into a group during class, sit down and begin the production process of making your own video media. They start off with general ideas, slowly starting to build a script and then storyboards. After these students have their creative ideas built into a concrete plan, they set out to shoot it. Shooting can take anywhere from 3-5 days and then it’s off to be edited. Once they feel they have perfected their projects in the editing bay, it’s time to turn it in and get working on their next idea for their next project! They do this 6 to 8 times during a school year! At the end of the year, the class picks out the best of the best and submits them to the Marion County Media Festival. The chosen participants, who entered qualifying entries, get all dressed up for this event.
This year Greg Thompson will be returning to host the event. Thompson is an award-winning actor, director, screenwriter, and producer. He has acted in many great titles like, Dark Remains, One Tree Hill and Dawson’s Creek.
But the students know the competition for these prizes is tough and all yearlong they have to bring their “A” game to these projects. This year alone, 292 entries came from 23 different schools. After all of the entries were received a panel of industry experts judged all of the entries in 12 categories’ and 4 different age groups. Winners in each category will advance from the local level to the state competition. Marion County Students continue to capture more awards than any other Florida school district in the state competition. In a previous year Marion students earned 25 total awards including 17 of 32 first places, six-second places, and two third-place honors. In another year Marion County students won 33 awards in the International Student Media Festival. The awards were as follows:
- Belleview High School: one award in the Live Action category for Best Defense;
- Dr. N.H. Jones Elementary: four awards in the Live Action category, including a “Judges Favorite” for Marion Therapeutic Riding Association;
- Dunnellon Middle School: nine award in the Live Action category, including “Best of Festival” for Tallahassee Surprise and five “Judges favorites” winners;
- Forest High School: one award in Live Action category for “Endurance”’ a “Best of Festival” winner;
- Harbour View Elementary– two awards in the Live Action category for Continents and Oceans and Responsibility;
- Howard Middle School-five awards, including two in the Photographic Essay category, one in the Single Photograph category for Dog’s Eye View, a “Judges Favorite,” and one each in the Sequential Skills and Live Action categories;
- Lake Weir High School– one award in the Live Action category for Kick in the Budget;
- Osceola Middle School-11 awards, including seven in the Live Action category and four “Judges Favorite” winners in the Animation category;
- Vanguard High School- one award in the Live Action category for Foreclosure.
The Festival is put on solely by community donations and organized by local educators. Presenting partners this year include Robert Biossoneault Oncology Institute, the Public Education Foundation of Marion County, and BMW/WV/Porsche of Ocala, Cox Communications, Dell, and Blackboard Connect. Duke Energy is also a producing partner.
Along with our host for the evening, over two dozen community leaders will be attending the event to help announce this year’s winners. They will be presenting certificates and awards this Friday night in many categories including “Best of Show”. “Best of Show” prizes will be awarded for grade levels K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12. Best of show is an honor at this event and includes cash prizes for the winner’s school.
Every year The Marion County Student Media Festival is aired live on the Marion Education Channel. It replays every Friday and Saturday at 7pm and Sundays at 2pm, throughout the month of May. So if you are not able to attend this wonderful event this Friday, May 9th at 7pm, I hope you tune in to watch our talented students compete in a great Festival that celebrates our student’s hard work all year long.