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Virtual Bicycle Film Festival is back w/ Bikepacking in Rwanda, to Cycling Humanitarian Efforts in Ukraine

bicycle film festivalPhotos: Bicyle Film Festival
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Get your stoke on as Bicycle Film Festival (BFF) returns for another season this March. The virtual screenings include three feature-length films and a slew of new short films, running from March 25-April 24.

BFF started in 2001 in New York City, which is still technically its home base. The independent film festival seeks to focus on urban cycling stories from around the world.

This year’s entries look like classic BFF fare, engineered toward contemporary and current events. Rwanda’s bikepacking race team, one pro’s story of tragedy and redemption, and a bike-propelled humanitarian effort in Ukraine are all on deck.

Bicycle Film Festival goes virtual

Also this year, audiences worldwide can access the films from wherever they are. The screenings break up into four international “programs,” three of which contain a feature plus shorts. One program comprises an array of shorts only.

Program 1, for instance, focuses on the 2020 Race Around Rwanda. The course is a beast: the single-stage, self-supported race around the country is hilly and gravelly, with a total distance of about 620 miles and an astronomical elevation gain of nearly 56,000 feet. The BFF-featured film, “Tugende,” spotlights some of the 65 ultra riders that lined up at the start of the 2020 race and the adventure that ensued.

That February, the peloton included everyone from well-known pros to members of Team Rwanda who had never entered a bikepacking race. 2020’s entry would be a memorable one — thunderstorms made the going tough and the never-ending hills tougher.

Program 1 shorts include bits about the world’s longest uninterrupted downhill, cloud forest biking outside San Francisco, Calif., and even a study of “multiple realities colliding during food delivery.”

Anyone interested in cycling in Ukraine should check out Program 4. The 13 short films include a piece about an effort to provide bicycles to rural villages in the country.

bicycle film festival

Others include an animated clip about Paul Buchanan’s attempt to send the notorious Austin Church Gap and a three-decade chronicle of Seattle’s illegal underground BMX community that promises to compel.

Film Fest tix on a sliding price scale

Interestingly, the festival offers all tickets on a sliding scale. For instance, you can pay either $75, $50, or $27 for a full pass (access to all films throughout the festival). If one specific program catches your eye, plan to pay between $10 and $20. And a smaller selection centered around the Ukraine story is available at $10-20 for a shorter timeframe.

Check out the wide-ranging Bicycle Film Festival spread here.

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