The Frozen River Film Festival offers documentary films and programming that engage, educate and activate our community to become involved in the world.
The Frozen River Film Festival seeks to:
Educate our audiences by offering documentary films and discussions on issues of local, regional and world importance. We expose our viewers to people and cultures they might otherwise never encounter, and to issues and perspectives they may have yet to consider.
Offer diverse points-of-view through the sharing of personal encounters dealing with world issues and nature. It is part of our mission to present a wide range of films and film makers from around the world.
Provide opportunities for debate, discussion and discourse on a variety of topics important to our community.
Encourage action on the part of each festival participant. Our festival will inspire viewers to take action on social issues, using tools and connections presented in documentary films and special Q & A sessions that follow.
Promote cross-cultural dialogue as discovered and documented by innovative film-makers from Minnesota, as well as other states and countries around the world.
Foster action on current issues through collaboration and coalition-building with other grassroots organizations.
In January 2016, Maggy Jacqmin, FRFF founder and the first director died from a battle with colon cancer. Her indomitable spirit laid the groundwork for those of us who came after her to build the festival into this amazing event. Her vision to have a documentary film festival in Winona has set the tone for Winona winters for the last decade. She desired to expand our awareness by bringing the world to us through visuals, art and stories.
In December 2015, FRFF’s partnership director, Bernadette Mahfood passed away after a short and intense battle with pancreatic cancer. Bernadette began chemo just before the winter holidays and even as her health declined she worked ceaselessly to make 2016 the best festival possible.
Bernadette was a passionate Winonan always willing to do what it took to enact change.
The activist challenge to be the change you believe in was never abstract for Bernadette.
These women shared a strength and a love for our community. While we have very big shoes to fill, we are reminded by their legacy to keep fighting the good fight, to keep looking deeper into the issues and share stories from around the world with our community.
What makes these losses so difficult, and perhaps the loss of any great individual, is the timelessness of their wisdom becomes more profound and deeply personal in their absence. We can no longer ask them what they think or what they would like to see. We are left with our own personal interpretation of their life.