Schenectady, New York: Smell the Movies at the Summer Film Series in the Park

Schenectady, New York: Smell the Open Air MoviesThe movie Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory was filmed in Munich, not Ballston Spa. But a tantalizing aroma that older residents may remember from the heyday of the local Bischoff Chocolate Factory will be in the air when Willy Wonka is shown in Wiswall Park on Front Street next month. AromaRama, an aromatic technique first used 50 years ago, will help the audience get their noses into the fantasy experiences of the movie's child protagonist, Charlie Bucket. The chocoholic-friendly 1971 movie will be shown at dusk on June 5 as part of the village's First Friday promotional event. AromaRama will give the audience whiffs of chocolate, bubble gum, blueberries and other scents that are relevant to specific scenes in the movie. Daniel DeFabio, director of the Ballston Spa Film Festival, said the AromaRama technique was developed in the 1950s by Charles Weiss, and involved a release of aromas into theaters. The showing of Willy Wonka, at about 9 p.m., will kick off the summer of outdoor movies sponsored by the Ballston Spa Business and Professional Association. This is the second summer of outdoor movie showings the association has sponsored in conjunction with promotion of the Ballston Spa Film Festival. The movies are shown in Wiswall Park and are projected on the side of the Front Street Deli building. The movies are family-oriented and admission is free. They take place on the first Friday of each month, June through October. Those attending are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs or blankets. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, based on a book by Roald Dahl, tells the story of Charlie Bucket and his quest for a golden ticket found in a Willy Wonka chocolate bar, a ticket to tour the secretive chocolate candy factory of Willy Wonka. The movie starts Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka. Willy Wonka bars will be for sale that night and, as in the movie, five bars will contain golden tickets, in this case redeemable for prizes at local businesses. DeFabio said the movie and the scents will also evoke Ballston Spa's confectionery past. The village was once filled with the scent of fresh chocolate coming from the Bischoff Chocolate Factory, DeFabio said. Preparations are also well under way for the second Ballston Spa Film Festival to be held Aug. 7-8 in Wiswall Park and at the Malta Avenue school auditorium. It is expected to feature about 40 short films, some of them made by local filmmakers and students. Admission to the showings is free. By Stephen Williams Source:

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