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WAMPA becomes the Tallgrass Film Association

The board of directors for the Wichita Association for Motion Picture Arts (WAMPA) has officially changed the organization's name to the Tallgrass Film Association.
The Tallgrass Film Association was founded as WAMPA in 2003 by the late Timothy Gruver as the parent organization of the Tallgrass Film Festival. It is a non-profit 501(c)3 arts organization dedicated to entertaining and enlightening audiences from America's Heartland. Through the festival, Third Thursday Film Series, Cinema Al Fresco Series, the Tallgrass Filmmaker Academy, and Special Screenings, the Tallgrass Film Association spotlights the city's venues, cultural attractions and artistic communities.
The name was changed for several reasons.
First, the Wichita Association for Motion Picture Arts is a mouthful and always has to be followed with "the organization that puts on the Tallgrass Film Festival" for it to have any meaning with the general public.
Second, this will be a springboard for a membership drive to get more people involved in Tallgrass. Many fans of the festival don't readily identify WAMPA with the festival. This gives us a great opportunity to let people say, "Hey, I like Tallgrass and want to support it." Tallgrass Film Association memberships are $35 and they get a $30 discount on All-Access passes to the festival, a free ticket to an Association special screening, two general admission vouchers to the festival, discounts on festival merchandise, invitations to special parties and lots more. People can sign up at the web site,, or at any Tallgrass Film Association event.
Third, it lets the organization streamline its marketing efforts. With WAMPA, everything had to be branded with the Tallgrass Film Festival, too, which wastes time and space. The new name lets us get across the brand without tying year-round or special events to the festival. This month alone the Tallgrass Film Association will be sponsoring both the Saturday, April 10 screening of Rod Pocowatchit's "The Dead Can't Dance" (which involved WAMPA's film class last year) and the Thursday, April 15 screening of "Green Porno" as part of the Tallgrass Third Thursday Film Series. And the wildly popular Cinema Alfresco will start May 27.
"The Dead Can't Dance" will be 7:30 p.m., Saturday, April 10, at the Orpheum Theatre. Tickets are $10. It is a campy zombie comedy, drama, adventure, that is unrated, but contains adult situations, strong language, mild gore and zombie exotic dancers.
"Green Porno" is an artful, playful look at the sexual behavior of animals created by Isabella Rossellini for The Sundance Channel. Production and costume designer Andy Byers will be at on hand to talk about his roll in the production and will be available to sign copies of the book about the series, on sale from Watermark Books at our event. "Green Porno" shows at 7 p.m., Thursday, April 15, at the Fisch Haus, 524 S. Commerce St. Admission is $10 for the general public, with discounts for students and seniors. Tallgrass Third Thursday shows an important independent film probably not on people's radar. They show in various locations, often pared with the subject matter of the film, such as the March screening of "The Horse Boy" at the Murfin Stables.
Cinema Alfresco is a weekly series of films tied to the festival's theme shown in the great outdoors -- or, at least in the great open air of The Brickyard, 129 N. Rock Island, in Oldtown. They are every Thursday night from the end of May to the end of July and start around 8 p.m., or whenever it gets dark enough.


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