The Sebring Public Library and the Highlands Art League are teaming up to launch "Movies by Moonlight," a series of free outdoor movies on Saturday evenings that will start in December.
Recently released and classic movies will be shown at nightfall on a 16-by-9-foot screen in the back yard of the Highlands Art League's Yellow House, next to the library on Lakeview Drive, three blocks from The Circle.
"We hope to have our first outdoor movie the first week of December," said Mary Myers, Highlands County library services director.
As long as the library's film and sound equipment arrives as scheduled, the premiere of this movie series will be on Dec. 6.
Two Saturday evening film shows per month are scheduled now, but that could change quickly.
"We're looking at doing outdoor movie events twice a month, and if we get the audiences we may increase that to every Saturday," Myers said.
Myers said she was looking for an innovative, community-based project and saw the popularity of outdoor movie series in cities around the country.
"People like going back to the old times when you went to the drive-in and saw movies under the stars," she said.
"Movies by Moonlight" will be like the drive-in experience, without the cars and without the price of admission. Myers said the hope is that the outdoor film series will help attract people to the downtown Sebring area.
"I've seen where communities have these outdoor movie events, and people bring picnic baskets and it becomes a real community event," Myers said. "I'm hoping it will take off and become something like that here, where it will be for families and people of all ages."
The family-friendly movies to be shown have not been selected yet, and Myers is inviting the community to help set the film schedule.
"The request line is open," Myers said. "If you're interested in films, give us suggestions on what you'd like to see for the opening films."
Requests for movies can be made by calling the library at 402-6716, dropping a movie list off at the front desk, or by e-mailing Myers at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The art league is planning to work with a youth group to sell refreshments, and movie goers will be welcome to bring their own food and drinks, Myers said.
People will bring blankets or lawn chairs for seating, and Myers said the gently sloping back yard of the Yellow House provides a perfect setting.
"The screen will be down toward the lake, and the viewers will be sitting up the slope back toward Lakeview, and so if people come early they can watch the sunset over Lake Jackson," Myers said.
The Saturday evening shows will start with film shorts and cartoons at dusk, with the feature film starting at dark.
"We have a lot of classic cartoons here at the library on DVD, and that would be a perfect way to start out the evening," Myers said.
The free outdoor movie series became possible thanks to the volunteer Sebring Friends of the Library.
Myers said she applied for a $10,000 grant from the state Community Libraries in Caring program for purchase of the film and sound equipment and the movie licensing agreements.
The state awarded $4,000, but the Friends organization came through with a $7,000 donation, Myers said.
"Sebring Library Launching 'Movies By Moonlight'" by Jim Konkoly. Originally published in Highlands Today. Read full article at: http://www2.highlandstoday.com/content/2008/nov/20/la-sebring-library-launching-movies-by-moonlight/