Screen YERT to Celebrate’s 5/5 Climate Impacts Day and get 5 FREE YERT DVDs!

Dear YERTians,

In honor of Earth Day on April 22 and Climate Impacts Day on May 5, YERT is offering five (5!) free (resalable) DVD’s with every screening license purchased now through May 5. We want you to screen YERT to help us all bring a positive attitude to the planetary challenges we face, and Earth Day and Climate Impacts Day provide opportunities to creatively organize people to do just that.

Click here to buy a YERT screening and receive five additional free YERT DVD’s!

On May 5, 2012, is encouraging citizens around the world to host events to “connect the dots between climate change and extreme weather.” We at YERT think that a great way to do that is with the YERT film — tackling climate change head-on with powerful quotes from Bill McKibben and David Orr — spiced-up with funny, inspiring, YERTy stories from the frontiers of sustainability. Even climate change deniers admit to enjoying YERT!

Host a fun, conversation-starting YERT screening with one stop to our online store.

So whether you want to plan events for Earth Day, Earth Week, Earth Month, or Climate Impacts Day (or any day!), we’d like to help you make it more fun – and more affordable. If you find buyers for each of your five YERT DVD’s, you’ll earn $100 to offset some or all of your screening license fees. If you can’t find buyers, you’re welcome to give away the YERT DVD’s to eager moviegoers.

Questions? Feel free to write to us directly at We can’t wait to hear about the events you’ll plan!

YERTfully Yours,
Ben, Mark, and Julie

P.S. After purchasing a YERT screening, click here to officially register your Climate Impact Day event at’s special site:

SPECIAL OFFER DETAILS: All standard screening licenses purchased from between the dates of March 30, 2012 and May 5, 2012 will have five additional free YERT film DVD’s included with the purchase – for a total of six (6) DVD’s. Actual screening date may occur at any time, even after May 5, so long as the purchase is made during the special offer period.

YERT Screenings in SF Bay Area + News!

Dear YERTians,

YERT’s West Coast Tour is moving into its final days with a flurry of Bay Area screenings, big news from the San Luis Obispo Int’l Film Festival, and much more…

  • Upcoming Screenings in Berkeley, Stanford, Sebastopol, Davis, and Santa Cruz, CA
  • Screening TODAY at Charlotte Film Festival, NC
  • Audience Award at San Luis Obispo Int’l Film Festival
  • New YERT Educational Cut Coming Soon!
  • Majora Carter Endorses YERT

Upcoming Screenings in Berkeley, Stanford, Sebastopol, Davis, and Santa Cruz, CA

Our current West Coast Tour tally? 3,800 miles traveled, screenings completed at 14 locations for 1100+ people, with just 7 screenings to go before we return home. The response has been overwhelmingly positive, sparking a new batch of screening requests across the country. We’ll be spending the next 8 days in the San Francisco Bay Area, and you can find all of those screenings here. Please grab blurbs and pics from our online press kit to share with friends and family.

SCREENING in Berkeley, CA on Thursday, 3/15, at 7pm
The Ecology Center in Berkeley, featured in the YERT film, is hosting this screening. Mark Dixon (Producer) will be there for Q&A. [Facebook event link here] (Ecology Center, 2530 San Pablo Ave, near Dwight Way, Berkeley, CA)

SCREENING at Stanford University, CA on Friday, 3/16, 9pm
Both YERT filmmakers, Mark and Ben, attended Stanford during the 90’s and sang in an all-male a-cappella group called “The Stanford Fleet Street Singers,” so we’re absolutely THRILLED to see the film screen at Stanford on Friday. Come on by if you want to see extra-goofy Q&A. Mark (Producer) will be there in-person, and Ben (Director) will be beaming in from Louisville. [Facebook event link here] (Stanford University, Arrillaga Family Dining Commons [map])

SCREENING in Sebastopol, CA on Monday, 3/19, 6:30pm
We’ll have a few special guests at this screening – Raven Gray, co-founder and President of Transition US, and Carolyne Stayton, executive director of Transition US, will both be in attendance to see themselves featured in the YERT film! Mark Dixon will be there for Q&A, too. [Facebook event link here] (The Sebastopol Grange Hall, 6000 Sebastopol Road [Hwy. 12 just east of the Chevron Station], Sebastopol, CA)

SCREENING in Davis, CA on Tuesday, 3/20, 7pm
Cool Davis is hosting this screening of YERT, and Mark Dixon (Producer) will be there for a reception before the screening (starting at 6:15pm), and Q&A after the screening. Please be sure to RSVP here: [Facebook event link here] (Veterans Memorial Center Theater, Davis, CA)

SCREENING in Santa Cruz, CA on Wednesday, 3/21, 6pm
The YERT film features ocean researcher and scientific rock star, Wallace J. Nichols, who will be in attendance at this screening event! Mark Dixon (Producer) will be there, too. Tickets are $5 in advance. Please call 831-423-7200 to reserve. [Facebook event link here] (Greenspace, 1122 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz, CA)

Additional Screenings:
(click here for detailed calendar and new screenings updated daily)

3/13 – Charlotte, NC (Charlotte Film Festival – Ben will be there on Southeast TOUR)
3/15 – Berkeley, CA (TOUR)
3/18 – Presidio Sustainable MBA Program, SF, CA (Private Screening on TOUR)
3/19 – Sebastopol, CA (TOUR)
3/20 – Davis, CA (TOUR)
3/21 – Athens, GA (EcoFocus Film Festival – Ben will be there on Southeast TOUR)
3/21 – Santa Cruz, CA (TOUR)
3/25 – Denver, CO (TOUR)
3/27 – Concord, NH
3/30 – Concord, NH
3/30 – YERT’s UK Premiere at Botanic Gardens Edinburgh
4/10 – Ashland, OH (Ashland University)
4/17 – Buffalo Niagara Film Festival, NY
4/19 – Newton, NJ
4/19 – Medford, MA (Tufts)
4/22 – Providence, RI (Providence College)
4/25 – San Diego, CA (SD State University)
4/27 – Cape Cod, MA
5/18 – Reel Earth Film Festival, New Zealand

Screening TODAY at Charlotte Film Festival, NC
Ben is currently hanging out in Charlotte, NC for the Charlotte Film Festival. YERT screens there tonight at 8:15pm, and we’ve learned that we have been nominated for Best Documentary! You can find more information here. Tickets are $10.

Audience Award at San Luis Obispo Int’l Film Festival

YERT’s latest award showed up on Saturday at the San Luis Obispo International Film Festival (SLOIFF), where YERT received the Audience Award in the feature documentary category! We had two filled screenings and plenty of questions after each one, not to mention tons of enthusiastic compliments, so we knew that audiences were enjoying the film, but you never know until the very end if the votes add up to an award. We’re honored to receive it, and hope that it helps us get the word out about what is possible if we dedicate ourselves to a thriving, sustainable future.

New YERT Educational Cut Coming Soon!
We’re happy to announce that we are very close to finishing a short version of the YERT film that will be handy for teachers and professors to screen during a single class period. Ben has been making progress in the editing cave, carving the film down to a duration of 68 minutes, and we’re looking to get it into the 50 minute range. We’ve added it as an option on our screening request form, so let us know if you’re interested!

Majora Carter Endorses YERT
Majora Carter offered her support for the YERT film recently, and we’re delighted to share this quote with you:

“With YERT, the journey to discover what is possible will take you on an amusing and informative detour.” -Majora Carter

If you don’t know who she is, check out this legendary TED talk, in which she describes her environmental justice work in the Bronx.

That’s all for now, folks! We’re sending daily updates on our Facebook page if this just isn’t enough for you.

Enjoy the spring temperatures!

Mark, Ben, and Julie

— Recent YERTy Pictures —

Mark and Christie (Mark’s Wife)
on the SLOIFF Red Carpet!

YERT Audience in Portland, OR.

From L to R, David and Fran Korten (Yes! Magazine), Mark
and Christie Dixon, Kat Gjovik, and Brendon Kepple.
This was the morning after the awesome Bainbridge, WA
screening of YERT!

Our tours are supported primarily by DVD sales
Click here to buy the YERT Film on DVD

YERT Screens in Vancouver, BC on Sunday, 2/26 + More tour news!

Dear YERTians,

YERT’s West Coast Tour is in full swing, with screenings scheduled or complete in over 21 cities. This week we have an update about some awesome upcoming screenings, and a quick review of the ones we’ve completed.

  • Upcoming Screenings in Vancouver (BC), Bellingham, Bainbridge, and Seattle
  • Glowing YERT Review in Huffington Post
  • Standing Ovation at Big Sky Documentary Film Festival
  • Great Screenings in Madison, Minneapolis, and Fargo
  • The New, More Challenging Garbage Challenge

Upcoming Screenings in Vancouver (BC), Bellingham, Bainbridge, and Seattle

We’ve now traveled over 2,500 miles and screened at six locations for 700+ people, with over 15 screenings remaining before we call this “West Coast Tour” complete. Basically, we’re just getting started, and having a blast the whole way. We’ve even sold enough DVD’s along the away to pay for our travel expenses to-date. Woohoo! Don’t forget to take a look at our growing tour schedule here, and feel free to grab blurbs and pics from our online press kit to share with friends and family.

SCREENING in Vancouver, BC, CANADA on Sunday, 2/26, at 3pm
Village Vancouver, the local Transition initiative, is hosting the event. Their schedule is so full of sustainability events up there that we could barely squeeze in! But squeeze in we have, and we look forward to meeting those individuals who make up the green powerhouse that is Vancouver. Mark Dixon (YERT Producer) will be there for discussion during and after the film, and will be staying a couple extra days to soak up all the green activity they have around town. Contact him if you’d like to hang out! [Facebook event link here] (Langara College room A130, West 49th Avenue, Vancouver, BC, Canada)

SCREENING in Bellingham, WA on Wednesday, 2/29, 7pm
The very first “on the street” interview filmed for YERT was with Atul Deshmane, CEO of Whole Energy, who has been supporting the project with thoughts, words, deeds, and donations ever since. We’re honored that he’s hosting this YERT screening in his home town. [Facebook event link here] (Limelight Theater, 1416 Cornwall Avenue, Bellingham, WA)

SCREENING on Bainbridge Island on Thursday, 3/1, 7pm
We’ve been building up to this screening event for years! Bainbridge Island is the home of so many YERT friends we can barely count. David and Fran Korten, Kat Gjovik, Sustainable Bainbridge, the entire staff at Yes! Magazine, and friends from previous jobs around the world– have somehow converged on Bainbridge Island, and YERT can’t wait to join them for a big screening event with pre and post receptions. [Facebook event link here] (Historic Lynwood Theater, 4569 Lynwood Center Road Northeast, Bainbridge Isle, WA 98110-2238)

SCREENING in Seattle on Friday, 3/2, 7pm
With the help of some of our Bainbridge friends, we’ve squeezed onto the weekly screening calendar of the Meaningful Movies Project in Seattle. We’re thrilled to be included in their program! This event is co-sponsored by the Bainbridge Graduate Institute, a groundbreaking sustainable MBA program in Seattle. [Facebook event link here] (Keystone Congregational United Church of Christ, 5019 Keystone Place N., Seattle)

Additional Screenings:
(click here for detailed calendar and new screenings updated daily)
2/29 – Pittsburgh, PA
2/29 – Bellingham, WA (TOUR)
3/1 – Bainbridge Island, WA (TOUR)
3/2 – Gainesville, FL (Cinema Verde Environmental Film & Arts Festival)
3/2 – Seattle, WA (TOUR)
3/3 – Portland, OR (TOUR)
3/3 – Louisville, KY (Film excerpts + Director Q&A)
3/9 – San Luis Obispo, CA (SLOIFF Film Fest on TOUR)
3/10 – San Luis Obispo, CA (SLOIFF Film Fest on TOUR)
3/13 – Charlotte, NC (Charlotte Film Festival – Ben will be there on Southeast TOUR)
3/15 – Berkeley, CA (TOUR)
3/18 – Presidio Sustainable MBA Program, SF, CA (Private Screening on TOUR)
3/19 – Sebastopol, CA (TOUR)
3/20 – Davis, CA (TOUR)
3/21 – Athens, GA (EcoFocus Film Festival – Ben will be there on Southeast TOUR)
3/21 – Santa Cruz, CA (TOUR)
3/25 – Denver, CO (TOUR)
3/27 – Concord, NH
3/30 – Concord, NH
3/30 – YERT’s UK Premiere at Botanic Gardens Edinburgh

Glowing YERT Review in Huffington Post
With a title like this, what’s there not to love? “Beyond Hope: Groundbreaking Environmental Road Trip Film Takes Climate Change Solutions Back Home.” Jeff Biggers has gone above and beyond the call of duty to write a thoughtful, eloquent, and ultimately glowing review of the YERT film. It’s almost as nice to read it as it is to see the faces of audience members after they see the film. Here’s a little snippet from the review:

“…the YERT film crew has managed to pull off the impossible in the world of cinema: A deeply absorbing and often hilarious road trip that confronts the badlands of our nation’s spiraling descent into dirty energy darkness, only to emerge along the solar roadways and wind-swept plains into the myriad possibilities for new power and sustainable living.”

Can you help us share the article with friends via Facebook and e-mail? Here’s the link to share:

Standing Ovation at Big Sky Documentary Film Festival
We had no idea how much of a YERTy town we would find here in Missoula! From our gracious host, Vicki Watson, to our festival sponsor, The Biomimicry Institute, to the fun, friendly and helpful staff of the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, this entire week has been a blast. It’s difficult to decide what has been more fun to encounter – the long and enthusiastic standing ovation by some 200 audience members at our Big Sky screeining? The fist bump from one of 300 high schoolers who saw our new hour-ish long educational cut? Or the cooing of 50 middle schoolers as I showed them our little fuzzy adopted mascot, Harry the Hairy Eared Dwarf Lemur (originally from the Xeko game), during a very active Q&A session at their school? I suppose we’ll never know. Thank goodness we don’t have to decide. 🙂

Great Screenings in Madison, Minneapolis, and Fargo
The West Coast Tour of YERT started out with three fun screenings as we drove west. Ryan, the Director from the awesome Within Reach Movie assembled a double feature for the thoughtful community at Arboretum Co-Housing in Madison, Wisconsin. Ryan and Tina literally rolled out the “green carpet” for our screening at Moss Envy in Minneapolis. And last but far from least, Nicole and David Crutchfield gathered their community together for a screening of YERT at the Historic Fargo Theater. All three screenings ended with lengthy discussions about the film and local sustainable community events and issues. Based on the audience response at these first few screenings, America appears to be ready for such discussion. Perhaps even yearns for it. Pictures below…

(Photo 1 is Arboretum Cohousing, 2 is Moss Envy, and 3 is Fargo!)

The New, More Challenging Garbage Challenge
In the original YERT adventure, we kept our garbage in the car for the whole year, trying to restrict garbage to just one shoebox per month. We estimate that’s about 1/100th of the average American’s garbage. (Know better? Let us know!) For the current West Coast Tour, we’re taking the garbage challenge to a whole new level – all garbage for the entire 50-day tour goes into one small ziplock bag. That bag goes into Mark’s cargo pants pocket. We took a picture of the garbage after 13 days on the road. Take a look at the picture and let us know what you see– the person who guesses the most items correctly during the next week gets a free YERT ChicoBag! (Send guesses to

(Click to zoom in on the 13 days of garbage shown above.)

Phew! That’s the latest news. Want more? Are you sure? Get the most and fastest updates about the YERT screening and tour schedule on our Facebook page. Next week we’ll also have an update about a new educational (i.e. SHORT) cut of the YERT film that Ben has been feverishly working on– while he also prepares for upcoming Southeast and Northeast YERT screening tours. Good stuff!

Hope to see you soon, somewhere in the country!

Ben, Mark, and Julie

— Recent YERTy Pictures —

Mark on screening duty.

Brendan on booth duty.

Ben on daddy duty. Bailey on daddy.

Our tours are supported primarily by DVD sales
Click here to buy the YERT Film on DVD

Tour Screening #1 a Success! Next event? Twin Cities at 4pm Today!

A big thanks to Arboretum Co-housing in Madison, WI. We had a great “double feature” screening of YERT and Within Reach — a five hour extravaganza of sustainable adventures. It was most fun to hang with Within Reach filmmaker Ryan Mlynarczyk, and also to see that we visit so many similar places but picked mostly different ones to feature in our film. Near-perfect dovetailing! The photo shows everybody who was still there after all 5 hours. 🙂 We also sold several DVD’s and received a few generous donations, which will help propel us along the road without starving!


We’re currently on the road driving to Minneapolis, MN, for our 4pm screening of YERT at Moss Envy, owned by our friends Tina and Ryan (who we met and filmed on the original YERT road trip). Then we’ll be staying overnight with Tony and Brenda Kvale. Thanks to all of them for helping to get the word out – we can’t wait to see them again in person! (Screening is at 4pm today at Moss Envy, 3056 Excelsior Blvd, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55416)

The road trip is going pretty well so far– and we are doing a new version of the “One Shoebox Garbage Challenge.” We’re now trying to keep the garbage down to ONE CARGO PANTS POCKET. So one pocket of garbage for nearly 2 months of road tripping. I have been trying to coach my road-trip co-traveler, Brendon, on the rules of the road for keeping garbage down to a minimum. He’s done a great job working with them, but his coffee habit ultimately led him to create the very first piece of garbage on the road trip: a raw sugar packet. You can see him owning up to it in the photo below, as he places the paper garbage into the little baggie we’re using to store (we hope) all garbage for the road trip.


More open road ahead. Trying to make the most of the carbon we’re spewing into the atmosphere along the way by having as many screenings as possible all along the way. Check out our spreadsheet here to find upcoming screenings. Tomorrow we’ll be screening in Fargo, ND!

Signing out,

Saturday Double Feature – YERT & Within Reach!

Madison Wisconsin, 4:30pm-9pm



People are encouraged to bring food for themselves, or something to share if they really feel like it.

YERT (Your Environmental Road Trip) (trailer at are filmmaker friends of ours whom Ryan met early in the Within Reach journey. They are on a national screening tour with their now completed movie and they want to do a double feature of our two movies as they are very compatible messages.

Here’s a synopsis of YERT: 50 States. 1 Year. Zero Garbage? Called to action by a planet in peril, three friends hit the road – traveling America with hope, humorÂ…and all of their garbage – to explore the good, the bad, and the weird across every state in search of the extraordinary innovators and courageous citizens who are tackling humanity’s greatest environmental crises. As the YERT team layers outlandish eco-challenges onto their year-long quest, an unexpected turn of events throws the project for a loop in this award-winning docu-comedy. Featuring Bill McKibben, Wes Jackson, Will Allen, Janine Benyus, Joel Salatin, David Orr, and music by Ben Sollee, Daniel Martin Moore, Mark Geary and more.

About the documentary film “Within Reach”: This inspiring film by Mandy Creighton and Ryan Mlynarczyk suggests that “community is the secret ingredient in sustainability.” Creighton and Mlynarczyk returned to the United States from Central America after serving with sustainable development organizations bound to hold on to the lessons of simplicity and community they had learned but struggled to do so as they built careers.

After digging deep, they sold their possessions and biked 6500 miles around the US, looking for a sustainable community. This film is about what they found along the way. (and Bill McKibben is in this film too!) Check out the trailer at

Arboretum Cohousing is proud to sponsor the viewing of these exciting films.

The showing will be Sat. Feb. 11, 2012 in the community room at Arboretum Cohousing, 1137 Erin St. Madison, WI

YERT will be selling DVD’s (a great way to support them!)
Within Reach is still in post-production and the movie is not the final version yet so no DVD’s will be for sale. (IT WILL BE A NEWER VERSION OF WITHIN REACH NOT YET SCREENED)

After each film, there will be brief Q&A’s with the filmmakers.

Let’s share what we are doing in our lives, or wish to do in our lives, to build community, and live more sustainably.

YERT’s West Coast Screening Tour BEGINS

Dear YERTians,

Our West Coast Tour is taking shape, with screenings scheduled in over 15 cities, and we’d love for you to meet us in person along the way! Read on for more details…

At Long Last: YERT’s West Coast Tour Details!

We’re super excited about our upcoming tour – 7,000 miles and screenings all around the country, particularly in Washington State, Oregon, and California. Please take a look at our full and evolving tour schedule here, and tell your friends about these imminent screenings! We don’t have a big PR team – just us, our hosts, and a couple volunteers – so your e-mail blasts to friends and family REALLY matter. Feel free to grab blurbs and pics from our online presskit.

SCREENING in Madison, Wisconsin on Saturday, 2/11, 4:30pm
This is a special double feature with our friends at the amazing Within Reach documentary. A double dose of road-tripping fun. Mark Dixon (YERT Producer) and Ryan Mlynarczyk (Within Reach Director) will be there for discussion during and after the film. (Arboretum Cohousing, 1137 Erin St., Madison, WI 53715)

SCREENING in Minneapolis, Minnesota on Sunday, 2/12, 4:00pm
We’ve got friends from the original YERT road trip in Minneapolis, and they’re hosting a YERT screening at their awesome eco-products store, Moss Envy. A giant thanks to Ryan and Tina for rolling out the “Green Carpet” for our second screening on tour. (Moss Envy, 3056 Excelsior Blvd, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55416)

SCREENING in Fargo, North Dakota on Monday, 2/13, 6:30pm
A big thanks to Nicole and David Crutchfield for putting together this wonderful screening. Also friends from the first YERT tour, they were an island of fun hospitality during our first visit, and they’re pulling out all the stops for us in their home of Fargo.
(The Historic Fargo Theatre, 314 Broadway, Fargo, ND 58102 February 13, 2012)

Additional Screenings:
(click here for detailed calendar and new screenings updated daily)
2/11 – Bedford, NY
2/13 – Honolulu, HI
2/16 – Emmitsburg, MD
2/19 – Elkader, IA
2/20 – Missoula, MT (Big Sky Film Fest on TOUR)
2/21 – Lake Forest College, IL
2/29 – Bellingham, WA (TOUR)
3/1 – Bainbridge Island, WA (TOUR)
3/2 – Seattle, WA (TOUR)
3/3 – Portland, OR (TOUR)
3/3 – Louisville, KY (Film excerpts + Director Q&A)
3/9 – San Luis Obispo, CA (SLOIFF Film Fest on TOUR)
3/10 – San Luis Obispo, CA (SLOIFF Film Fest on TOUR)
3/13 – Charlotte, NC (Charlotte Film Festival)
3/15 – Berkeley, CA (TOUR)
3/18 – Presidio Sustainable MBA Program, SF, CA (Private Screening on TOUR)
3/21 – Athens, GA (EcoFocus Film Festival)
3/25 – Denver, CO (TOUR)
3/30 – YERT’s UK Premiere at Botanic Gardens Edinburgh

That’s all of the updates for now. We have a pile of new festival announcements to share with you, but we’ll save that for another day. Please be sure to tell us how your eco-efforts are going on YERT’s Facebook page. Enjoy the brisk season…

Mark, Ben, and Julie

— Quote from a YERT Screening Host —

“Movie screening was (a) HIT in Woodstock IL at the Woodstock HS, we had about 40 adult and 50 students from a few different HSs. Sold all 10 DVDs and have a waiting list! They loved the movie and inspired several to sign up for Transition. Also spoke to a few more teachers that want to get more engaged with their students and activities. Very cool, had an awesome adrenalin rush.” – Doug Close, McHenry Transition, IL

Our tour is supported primarily by DVD sales
Click here to buy the YERT Film on DVD

YERT Screening at Heinz History Center for Steeltown Contest + West Coast Tour!

Dear YERTians,

We’re thrilled to announce a new partnership with Steeltown Entertainment’s “Take a Shot at Changing the World” competition, with a kick-off event that includes a YERT screening in Pittsburgh just one week from now! Read on for more information and some YERTy news about our upcoming West Coast Tour…

  • YERT Screens at Heinz History Center to Launch Steeltown’s “Take a Shot” Contest on Jan. 29!
  • Sign Up to Host a Screening During Our Imminent West Coast Tour
  • YERT Film DVD Sales Going Strong

YERT Screens at Heinz History Center to Launch Steeltown’s “Take a Shot” Contest on Jan. 29!

Please join us on January 29th at 2:30 p.m. at The Heinz History Center where students, parents, educators, and the general public are invited to a FREE SCREENING of the film “YERT: Your Environmental Road Trip.” At the event you’ll also have an opportunity to learn more about the “Take a Shot to Change the World” competition, in which students can make a movie that makes a difference and win up to $10,000 in prizes. Tickets for the screening are first come, first serve. To attend, please RSVP with or call 412-622-1325. More information about the screening AND the contest at

Sign Up to Host a Screening During Our Imminent West Coast Tour

We’ve learned that the absolute best way to get the word out about the YERT film and all of the amazing stories IN the film is to meet our audiences. In person! So we’re hitting the road again for a big West Coast Tour in late February and all of March (with a few screenings on the trip out and back). We don’t have our schedule locked yet, so now’s the time to entice us, encourage us, and help us visit you wherever you are! Here’s what we need…

  • Screening hosts. We’ll screen anywhere: house parties, theaters, community centers– we just need you to help organize the events. We can even set up a our own mini-theater with supplies we’ll bring along.
  • Places to stay. We’ll have bedding supplies. We just need a place to put them down.
  • People to film. We would love to share a few new stories about what’s happening across America.

The tour will be funded by donations, DVD sales, and lots of love. Screening fees for events that we visit on tour are requested but not mandatory. Check out our rough itinerary (totally subject to change) and Google Map Route, then sign up to host a screening here. Be sure to note that you want an “on tour” screening!

YERT Film DVD Sales Going Strong
We’ve been delighted by the number of people who have purchased YERT DVD’s during the last two months. So much enthusiastic feedback, too! You can order yours at our online store. Share them with friends. Give them as gifts. Help us wake up this country and get on a sustainable path. (Bulk pricing is now available – contact for details).

We hope you had a nourishing and delicious holiday season, filled with rich, close community encounters. Did you watch our film with family? How did it go? Tell us about it on Facebook. Until next time…

Mark, Ben, and Julie

— Quote from Janaia Donaldson’s Review of YERT —

“This well-produced overview of important environmental issues and sampler of creative responses is optimistic without being pollyanna. We loved it. Smiles amid the serious stuff and the inspiring innovators. A chance to meet some of our heros and watch young people learn lots. We hope to follow in their footsteps and bring Peak Moment TV viewers longer chats with many of YERTÂ’s interviewees. With five film festival awards (and counting), YERT is an inspiring one-movie environmental film festival for EveryTown. ”
– Janaia Donaldson, Peak Moment TV

YERT Film Screens at Heinz History Center to Launch Steeltown’s “Take a Shot” Contest – 1/29/12


Contact: Rachel Shepherd, Steeltown Entertainment Project, Project Manager, 412-622-1325


Pittsburgh, PA (January 2012) – In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, and to kick off the 2012 “Take A Shot At Changing The World” Digital Media Contest, Steeltown Entertainment Project and the Senator John Heinz History Center are screening YERT: Your Environmental Road Trip, a film that is keeping Carson’s dreams alive. This movie follows a trio on their cross-country road trip and quest for the sustainable lifestyle, departing from the birthplace of the environmental movement—the Rachel Carson Homestead.

The screening takes place at the Heinz History Center on January 29th at 2:30 P.M and is free and open to the public. Filmmaker and star Mark Dixon will speak after the event along with other special guests including Dr. Patricia DeMarco, Director of the Rachel Carson Institute at Chatham University, Carl Kurlander, Executive Producer of Steeltown Entertainment Project, and Andy Masich, President and CEO of the Heinz History Center. Tickets are first come, first serve. To reserve free tickets, people are encouraged to call SteeltownÂ’s offices at 412-622-1325 or email

The “Take a Shot at Changing the World” contest is open to middle school and high school students in Southwestern PA, and gives kids the chance to make movies and make a difference. Students can win cash prizes by making short films that tell stories of how Pittsburgh and Pittsburghers have changed the world, the $2500 Innovation Prize in conjunction with the Heinz History Center, or by making movies that feature their own personal plans for social action, the $2500 Globechangers Prize. Additionally, there is a $2500 environmental movie prize, and a $2500 polio movie prize. The winner of the polio prize will get their film posted on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation website and the winner of the Globechanger Social Action Award will receive a trip to the Jefferson Awards in Washington, D.C. and mentorship to implement their ideas.

The contest is a collaborative effort put forth by Steeltown Entertainment Project, The Jefferson Awards, The Heinz History Center, The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Allegheny Intermediate Unit, and WQED.

Teachers and students are invited to stay after the screening to find out more about the “Take a Shot at Changing the World” contest and how they can get involved, and also to attend a movie-making brainstorming workshop with Mark Dixon and other experts.

The acclaimed film YERT is a fun and compelling environment road trip where the filmmakers cover 50 States in one year living on only one shoebox of trash a month. With their planet in peril, three friends hit the road – traveling with hope, humor, and all of their garbage – to explore every state in America (the good, the bad…and the weird) in search of the extraordinary innovators and citizens who are tackling humanity’s greatest environmental crises. As the YERT team layers outlandish eco-challenges onto their year-long quest, an unexpected turn of events pushes them to the brink in this award-winning docu-comedy. The film features Bill McKibben, Wes Jackson, Will Allen, Janine Benyus, Joel Salatin, David Orr, and others. The YERT Feature Film received a plethora of noteworthy awards including the Audience Award at the Environmental Film Festival at Yale, tying with Oscar-nominated Waste Land. To find out more about this feature film visit

The YERT screening is the first of the “Make a Movie, Make a Difference” series that will culminate in April with The Shot Felt ‘Round the World, a film that tells the story of Jonas Salk and his team at the University of Pittsburgh pulling together with a city and a nation to conquer what was once the most feared disease of the 20th Century—polio. The screening will mark the 57th anniversary of the Salk Polio Vaccine being declared safe and effective, as well as the recent declaration of India becoming polio-free. The Shot Felt ‘Round The World was recently selected as the Opening Night Film for the San Luis Obispo Film Festival and has been picked up for distribution by Mercury Media.

The “Take A Shot” competition builds on last year’s success, where students created movies that connected the development of the Salk Polio Vaccine in Pittsburgh to current eradication efforts around the world, raising awareness about a largely forgotten disease and inspiring a new generation to care and to act. 265 students participated, and their films received 12,500 votes from the general public.

To find out more about Steeltown’s “Take a Shot at Changing the World,” the contest topics and prompts, and how you can get involved, visit

Steeltown Entertainment Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit whose mission is to help build a vibrant, responsible, and sustainable entertainment sector in Southwestern PA by connecting entertainment professionals with regional ties to local projects, people, and partnerships to create commercially viable and socially meaningful film and media. For more information, go to

The Senator John Heinz History Center is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution and the largest history museum in Pennsylvania. The Western Pennsylvania Sports Museum is a museum within a museum, comprehensively presenting the regionÂ’s remarkable sports story through hundreds of artifacts and interactive experiences for visitors of all ages. The History Center and Sports Museum are located at 1212 Smallman Street in the cityÂ’s Strip District, and are open every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. More information is available at

YERT Awarded Best Eco Film at SOAPIFF + More News

Dear YERTians,

We continue to receive overwhelmingly positive feedback about the YERT film, as we travel from screening to screening to meet audiences around the country. It seems that people everywhere are ready for, as we like to say, “an environmental documentary film that isn’t depressing.” Read on for more news…

  • YERT is “Best Environmental Film” at SOAPIFF!
  • The International Premiere of YERT in COSTA RICA
  • More Upcoming Screenings (KY, CA, CT, MO, GA, PA)
  • DC Screening Success!
  • Exploring Distribution Options

YERT is “Best Environmental Film” at SOAPIFF!
We’re thrilled to announce that the YERT film received another award – this time from the Southern Appalachian International Film Festival, or SOAPIFF for short. We have a special chapter in our film that specifically grapples with mountaintop removal mining (MTR) in West Virginia, featuring a flight on SouthWings, an interview with several MTR activists including Larry Gibson, and beautiful music by Ben Sollee (in this case, “Panning for Gold“). It is our small tribute to those working hard to rescue Appalachia from mining companies that are actively working to scrape life from the region. Learn more and get involved at

The International Premiere of YERT in COSTA RICA
Ben will be heading down to one of the most environmentally forward-thinking countries on earth for the International Premiere of YERT at the Costa Rica International Film Festival! The YERT film’s reputation is starting to open doors on its own, and we were invited by the festival to apply. One thing let to another, and now Ben is going to need some non-toxic sunscreen for his hop down to Costa Rica for the big event: Wednesday, Nov. 16, 8pm, at the El Sano Banano in Montezuma, Costa Rica (Nicoya Peninsula). I know that most of you probably aren’t planning to swing down there next week, but we definitely want you all to know about it. (For the record, in 2010 Costa Rica ranked 3rd in the world on the Environmental Performance Index developed at Yale and Columbia Universities. The United States placed 61st.)

More Upcoming Screenings
There can never be too many YERT screenings, and we’re glad to announce a fresh batch of events before Thanksgiving! We have over 10 screenings planned around the country during the next week. Check out our screenings page for more details and our calendar of events. And don’t forget to tell your friends and family to go see the YERT Film in their area! Here’s a quick reference list of events coming up through the end of November:

(click each for details or here for full calendar)

*Mark attending for Q&A
**Ben attending for Q&A
***Mark + Ben attending for Q&A
°Mark or Ben for videochat Q&A

DC Screening Success!
With barely two days of lead time, we packed the house with over 40 very enthusiastic viewers at last weekend’s YERT screening in Washington DC, then sold 17 DVDs after a standing ovation and extended Q&A with both Mark and Ben. The screening was designed to coincide with the Tar Sands Action, and we handed out over 1,000 fliers to a huge crowd of activists (10,000+) gathered all around the White House. Not only did the screening go well, but the larger event (protesting the possible KXL pipeline from the tar sands in Canada) was a great success! Obama decided to delay approval of the pipeline – and most analysts believe that the news spells the end for the project. A W E S O M E. Read Bill McKibben’s full report here.

<--Photos from the screening in DC! Exploring Distribution Options
We don’t have a lot to report here yet, but we have received a steady stream of interest from distributors, agents, and others interested in helping us get the YERT film seen more widely around the country, and the world. Stay tuned – we’re looking at possible screening tours, Earth Day/Week/Month events, and generally brainstorming about how to get the film in front of more peole. Got ideas? Please e-mail them to us at

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and we have so much to give thanks for here at YERT. Thank you for your enthusiastic support and encouragement. And don’t forget to join the conversation on Facebook. Peace out.

Ben, Mark, and Julie

— New Endorsements of the YERT Film —

“Here’s a trip you’ll wish you’d taken, and you’ll be glad you get to watch!”
-Bill McKibben, Author and Environmentalist

“Our whole family digs it! The YERT eco-cinematic journey is an important, funky, infuriating, dirty, corny, (nearly) trash-free, wiggly, personal, yummy, hilarious, timely, irreverent and heart-warming exploration of the creative American mind as it faces it’s greatest challenge. Ever.” -Dr. Wallace J. Nichols, Research Associate, California Academy of Sciences

Activists marching with a giant fake oil pipeline outside the White House.