The Walla Walla Movie Crush showcases the best American short films of the past year. For 2022, the event is being held July 15-17, and it is the perfect excuse for a film-lover’s getaway to Walla Walla, Washington. For a quick taste of this year’s Movie Crush, check out their trailer.
Walla Walla Movie Crush Weekend Itinerary
Walla Walla Movie Crush is a weekend long program broken into one-hour thematic blocks; each block may contain a blend of narratives, documentaries, animation, music videos, and more. The festivities are kicked off with a package about veterans’ issues, in honor of the organizers’ commitment to the Red Badge Project and its work in Walla Walla. Other package themes will include BLM, motherhood, dance, sports, “Saturday morning cartoons” for families, and a package of student shorts, including one from the local Filmmakers Bootcamp led by Jeffrey Townsend.
Plan your arrival in Walla Walla for Thursday afternoon, so you don’t miss The Red Badge Project: Veterans Tell Their Stories, a separate ticketed event that further cements the connection between the Walla Walla Movie Crush and the Red Badge project. Hosted by Red Badge founding faculty member Warren Etheredge, the evening features readings by veterans in the Red Badge Project, an unforgettable experience that just may better lives for those who have protected yours.
Day One of Walla Walla Movie Crush
Screenings on Friday begin at 6pm, so plan to enjoy the Walla Walla summer sun and take in a few local attractions while you wait for the night of short cinema to begin. A delicious espresso and pastry from Colville St. Patisserie is the perfect leisurely breakfast stop. Do some window shopping (or real shopping!) while you wait for the downtown art galleries to open (Todd Telander Gallery and the Combine Art Collection both open at 11am). Make reservations for lunch at Brasserie Four, where local art, fine wine, and French cuisine are all on display and dare we say it… crush-worthy.
After lunch, walk it off! You can walk to several downtown Walla Walla wineries – a solid option if artistry in the glass is of importance to you – or, you can take the self-guided walking sculpture tour on Whitman Campus – a beautiful way to get in your steps and take in unique works of art in a variety of mediums. Give yourself time to head back to your hotel to spruce up before your night of film screenings at the Gesa Power House Theatre.
Insider tip: Spring for the VIP “Crush Groove” Weekend Pass, which includes access to the daily Filmmaker Happy Hours beginning at 5pm. Hobnob with around 50 visiting filmmakers from around the country, while enjoying snacks and beverages provided by the Movie Crush.
Day Two of Walla Walla Movie Crush
All short films, all the time! Screenings run from 9am – 5pm and from 7pm – 10pm on Saturday. Come and go, or come and stay. It’s a full day of exciting screenings and stimulating conversation.
Day Three of Walla Walla Movie Crush
When booking your travel, be sure to extend your stay into Monday so you don’t miss Sunday’s Closing Night Ceremony. Screenings begin at noon and run until 5pm, and the Closing Night Ceremony runs from 7pm – 9pm. It is then that attendees will enjoy the announcement of the event’s annual awards as chosen by a jury of award-winning actors, screenwriters and filmmakers. During this evening of festivities, the Walla Walla Movie Crush will also induct another member of The Short Order, a virtual Hall of Fame for makers of short-form content. The recipient will be honored with a tribute screening and “knighting ceremony”.
Where to stay:
The Courtyard by Marriott Walla Walla is the Official Host Hotel of the 2022 Movie Crush, with a special room rate available when using this link or by requesting the Walla Walla Movie Crush room rate when booking over the phone at 509.876.8100. The Courtyard by Marriott is within walking distance of the Gesa Power House Theatre and downtown Walla Walla, making it not only a cost-effective choice for your Movie Crush experience but also a convenient one!
Walla Walla Movie Crush is a luxury-class event jam-packed with crowd-pleasing entertainment. Every year, a new tagline is selected that is relevant to the spirit of the event. For 2022, the tagline “shaken, stirred, bonded” references not only the quality of the films themselves, but the power of the communal experience, and the family-like bonds we create when watching and talking about short films together. You can watch the teaser trailer here. The final Movie Crush line-up will be revealed before July 4, 2022.
Plan for a visit to Walla Walla during Walla Walla Movie Crush weekend for a truly crush-worthy getaway you’ll want to come back for year after year!