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329 West 18th Street Suite #610
Chicago, Illinois 60616
(312) 243-1808

October 11, 2013

Chicago Home Movie Day 2013 (everyone’s invited!)

CFA and Northwest Chicago Film Society have lots in store for you at this year’s home movie day, which takes place Saturday, October 19th at the accommodating Chicago History Museum. This international event (started 11 year ago by the Center for Home Movies) provides a unique opportunity for those with 16mm., 8mm, and/or Super 8mm home movies to have their films inspected and projected by local archivists and skilled projectionists.

We also have lots of entertainment for those without films to share: Home Movie Day Bingo (win prizes!), popcorn (mmmm), live accompaniment by local pianist David Drazin PLUS a selection of curated home movies from two culturally rich Chicago neighborhoods – Bronzeville and Ravenswood Manor. Why these two neighborhoods? Well, community orginzations from these two neighborhood approached CFA separately about having their own neighborhood home movie days in 2014 (Ravenswood Manor turns 100 next year, btw!!). We thought we could get a head start by featuring these two communities at our 2013 city-wide event. Of course, all Chicagoans (and their home movies!) are encouraged to attend and participate in Home Movie Day, but here’s an idea of what you’ll see in this year’s 2PM curated program:

Representing Bronzeville: The home movies of Olympic Champion & politician, Ralph Metcalfe!

Once called “the worlds fastest human,” two-time track & field Olympian Ralph Metcalfe nabbed glory in both Los Angeles in 1932 and in Berlin in 1936. While a skilled competitor in his own right, Metcalfe is likely best remembered for his part in the gold medal-winning 4×100 relay team that competed in Berlin. Following military service and a career in the private sector, Metcalfe started his political career by representing Chicago’s Third Ward on the city council in 1949. The Democrat took office in the Senate in 1971, and represented Illinois there until his death in 1978.

We are very excited to share personal home movies from the Ralph Metcalfe Collection at this year’s home movie day! Expect to see 1957 scenes from inside Chicago’s Third Ward Office, mid-century track & field events, Queen Elizabeth II’s 1959 visit to Chicago and a 1961 bake sale held at Howalton Day School, the first African American private school in Chicago. Ralph’s son, who is working tirelessly to preserve and promote his father’s legacy, will be on hand at Home Movie Day to narrate his family’s home movies.

Representing Ravenswood Manor: teenage antics shot on Super 8 sound film!

Back in the early 1970′s, a gaggle of Ravenswood Manor teens documented their wild neighborhood antics and shot chaotic short films on their Super 8mm cameras. Go back in time to an era of Yes & Pink Floyd t-shirts(!), wood-panelled basements, Chicago River explosions and unsupervised pyrotechnics.

and as a special treat, newly acquired CFA home movies of the 1933 Chicago’s World’s Fair!

CFA just acquired a collection of  home movies from the Zahn Family of Racine, Wisconsin. Included in this donation were 5 (yes, 5!) 8mm home movies shot at the 1933-1934 Chicago World’s Fair (aka the Century of Progress International Exposition). At this year’s Home Movie Day, we will project our favorite World’s Fair reels from the Zahn Collection (teaser: animatronic King Kong!!!). The 8mm film format came about in 1932, so this is an extremely rare chance to watch some of the earliest 8mm out there …

Home Movie Day 2013 is from 11AM-3PM, with the curated program beginning at 2PM. Folks with celluloid home movies should feel free to mozy on over anytime between 11AM-2PM to have their films inspected and, if in good shape, projected. For more info on the event, click over to our HMD 2013 events page. Not in Chicago? Check out the *official* and growing list of Home Movie Day locations here (via The Center for Home Movies). Happy Home Movie Day to all!