King County Library System’s Film Festival Is a “Reel” Hit

Patrons of all ages earn video awards

Some things just take time.

The first-ever KCLS Reel Fest Film Premiere and Awards Show, planned in the spring of 2020 as a live event at a performing arts center, was postponed after coronavirus public-health mandates prohibited large public gatherings.
KCLS rescheduled the event for September 28, holding a virtual ceremony instead, and it was worth the wait. An estimated 100 people tuned in to see the winners and their films, and a YouTube link of the Awards Show has been viewed 1,765 times.

The Reel Fest contest aimed to capture why people love their libraries, inviting King County residents to enter two-minute videos featuring the theme, “What does the library mean to you?”

In all, 115 patrons, some of whom worked in teams, submitted 91 short films. Winners of the contest’s two categories–youth and adult¬–were announced at the ceremony, and their films were premiered. They also received cash awards, made possible with support from the KCLS Foundation.
The contest’s judges, all of whom had film and storytelling expertise, provided insights into how they selected the winners, commending each contestant for creativity and movingly depicting how libraries impacted them.

KCLS Executive Director Lisa Rosenblum also praised contestants for their willingness to share their library stories with the public.
“Congratulations to all the KCLS Reel Fest winners and finalists!” she said. “Thank you for sharing your love of the library with us. Your stories were truly inspirational, and we wish you the best in all your future creative efforts.”

Winners in the youth category (ages 17 and younger) were:

  • 1st Place ($1,000): Safir Azam, “Diary of a Wimpy Kid Doodles” (Lake Hills Library)
  • 2nd Place ($700): Aidan Springer, “Treehouse” (Newport Way Library)
  • 3rd Place ($500): Matthew Perry and Andrew Schmidt, “The Chronicles of KCLS” (Newport Way Library)

Runners up were Janet Chang, “My Library Story” (Newport Way Library) and Carmina Cruz, “Libraries Don’t Just Equal Books” (Covington Library).

Winners in the adult category (ages 18 and older) were:

  • 1st Place ($1,000): Amye Bronson-Doherty, “KCLS on the Road” (Federal Way Library)
  • 2nd Place ($700): Alexander Tsway, “Ozzy in Space” (Bellevue Library)
  • 3rd Place ($500): Arthur Klepchukov, “Aisles of Ideas” (Shoreline Library)

Runners-up were Whitney King, “First Stop the Library” (Renton Highlands Library) and Alicia Wengreen, “Blue, Grey, Kaleidoscope Play” (Auburn Library).

The ReelFest Awards Show and films can be viewed on our Reel Fest page.