A Special KY Derby Poem + 5 Free YERT DVDs (w/ Screening Purchase)

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Get 5 free YERT DVDs with every YERT Screening Purchase Through 5/5!

Dear YERTians,

We had a wonderful burst of 28 screenings during “Earth Month” in April, with dozens more coming up this summer. Thank you for spreading the word!

We also wanted to send out one more reminder just in case you forgot. Climate Impacts Day is this weekend on May 5, and to help celebrate, YERT is offering five (5!) free DVD’s with every screening license purchased through May 5.

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

To assist with the celebration, YERT Director Ben Evans wrote a little poem. And if you don’t know, May 5 is not just Climate Impacts Day, but Kentucky Derby Day, too! Enjoy the poem…

The Race to Save the Race (Bet on the right HORSE)

‘Tis the day of The Derby
A day to take pause
Connecting the dots

All over the planet
We’re gathering now
To tell the world how

Climate chaos results
From man’s carbon addiction
Faces quite the affliction

The floods and the droughts
And the storms we’ve been feeling
Are part of a trend
And humanity’s reeling

From icebergs to TRINNIBERG
All berg’s are affected
As the polar ice melts and
Less sunlight’s reflected

Huge infernos MARK VALES
KI-lling wildlife and trees
While big oil and big coal say

Deniers quote “science” from
Hacks, quacks, or GEMOLOGISTs
‘Cause they just can’t refute
The world’s best climatologists

NASA’s climate Godfather
Says we need to take action
No matter the bother

With our atmosphere’s carbon
It’s time to get wiser
Sub-350 ppm’s

And he says hesitation
Doesn’t BODEMEISTER well
For our civilization

Ask the dinosaur, dodo,
Or fierce SABERCAT
Extinction’s forever
Can’t argue with that

DADDY LONG LEGS are creepy
But creepier still
Is the DULLAHAN coming
If we don’t find the will

Yet, year after year
Politicians keep balking
At fixing the problem
So now we’re DONE TALKING

It’s time to TAKE CHARGE
INDY-pendent of “leaders”
Face the ALPHA task first
(For all you Greek readers)

So wear a big dot
On your world-UNION RAGS
Share this global LIAISON
With pix, tweets, and tags

The science is clear
It’s steep odds that we’re facing
In this race for our lives
So it’s time to get racing

The future of Earth
Could be hotter than Hell
So each day we take action

-Poem by Ben Evans

So let these words be an inspiration to you on Climate Impacts Day. Connect the dots with vigor and creativity, and most of all… lots of fun!

YERTfully Yours,
Ben, Mark, and Julie

P.S. In the picture below (click on it for a glorious close-up) Ben is getting ready for Climate Impacts Day on 5/5 – same day as the Kentucky Derby. Louisville’s 350 group is planning some great Derby fun, so if you’re in the Louisville area, visit ClimateDots.org (or this Louisville link) to find out more about the Louisville event and join in the excitement.

—Ben wearing his special climate-activated Kentucky Derby hat—

SPECIAL OFFER DETAILS: All standard screening licenses purchased from http://yert.com/screenings.php 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.

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Fran Korten at Yes! Magazine likes YERT!

A lovely endorsement from Fran Korten, Publisher, YES! Magazine: “A big ‘YES!’ to Mark, Ben, and Julie, who have given us the road trip for our century — a roaring tour of some of the best solutions for a warming planet, spiked with funky humor and charming humility.”

Yes! Magazine had a big influence on YERT, bringing a positive and practical vision of the future into focus. If you haven’t yet, please check out http://www.yesmagazine.org/ .

Author Mat Stein (When Technology Fails) Reviews YERT!

This review was recently written up by author Mat Stein, who wrote “When Technology Fails” among other books. Definitely worth a read.

Mark Dixon and Ben Evans have produced an outstanding piece of environmental filmmaking. The challenges facing our planet can often seem overwhelming, and many environmental films fail to either inspire or excite by using the standard formula of telling us how bad things are followed by some glimmer of hope that if we could only manage to make a few real changes then the future of our world would not be so dim and catastrophic—hardly a recipe for excitement and engagement! YERT serves up a banquet of comedy, education, and inspiration as they travel to all 50 states under self-imposed “rules” that crank up the entertainment factor. Along the way they meet with environmental shakers and movers like Bill MCKibben, and other lesser known but equally inspiring folks, with a few sprinkles of the outrageous and quirky to add spice to the mix. Highly recommended!

By Matthew Stein, P.E., Author of When Disaster Strikes: A Comprehensive Guide to Emergency Planning and Crisis Survival and When Technology Fails: A Manual for Self-Reliance, Sustainability, and Surviving the Long Emergency. http://www.matstein.com & http://www.whentechfails.com

Screen YERT to Celebrate 350.org’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, 350.org 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 team@yert.com. 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 350.org’s special site: http://www.climatedots.org/.

SPECIAL OFFER DETAILS: All standard screening licenses purchased from http://yert.com/screenings.php 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: http://cooldavisyert.eventbrite.com/. [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

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 http://www.yert.com/) 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, humor…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 http://www.withinreachmovie.com/

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 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 Steeltown’s offices at 412-622-1325 or email Rachel@steeltown.org.

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 www.yert.com.

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 www.takeashotcontest.org.

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 www.steeltown.org.

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 region’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 city’s Strip District, and are open every day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. More information is available at www.heinzhistorycenter.org.

Greetings from St. Louis, Costa Rica, and TEDx Pittsburgh!

Whew, I just got back from St. Louis, Costa Rica, and Pittsburgh…and boy are my arms tired. 😉 It’s been a fantastic couple of weeks for the YERT film – (hey, we just won Best Feature Documentary for our international premiere at the Costa Rica International Film Festival!!). Here are some snapshots and a few things I learned while traveling.

St. Louis (11/11-13):
* Always remember your wallet when taking a road trip to St. Louis (or your Aunt Karen will never let you live it down when you get there).

* When in St. Louis’ incredible City Museum, keep track of your 3-year-old…no, really.

* Treating said 3-year-old to a celebratory ice cream cone and root beer at said museum may seem like a good idea at the time…

…it is not.

* The St. Louis International Film Festival is really cool. They’ll even take a picture of you outside their marquee.

Costa Rica (11/14-18):
* Always remember your passport when flying to Cos…don’t worry, I did actually remember my passport. 😉

* 48 hours is not nearly enough time in Montezuma, Costa Rica.

* But, if 48 hours is all you can get in Montezuma, Costa Rica…take it!

* Don’t try to cross the river to hike through the jungle to get to the big waterfall if it rained the night before because the river will look like this and you will die.

Instead, cross the river the next day when it’s calmer…

Of course, when the waterfall you’re trying to get to looks like this…

…I can understand why people might throw caution to the wind.

* Zip lines are harder to pull off as you get older.

* The Costa Rica International Film Festival is also really cool! And they dig fun environmental docs!

TEDx (11/19-20):
After a long day of travel from San Jose, Costa Rica to Farmington, PA by way of MIA and PIT, I finally rendezvoused with Mark at what can only be described as rural Pennsylvania’s answer to the Palace of Versailles for a truly remarkable experience presenting YERT highlights at Pittsburgh’s TEDx conference where we were very well received.

* Pennsylvania doesn’t have Las Vegas, but it does have Nemacolin Resort. And holy honkin’ hotel, Batman! This place is decked out!

* There is a certain inescapable irony about holding a conference focused on “power” in an enormous, sprawling hotel with giant chandeliers in every hotel room. Kind of like an environmental road trip…

* In a pinch, a hotel room bathtub can be used as a washer and an iron as a clothes dryer…for all of your wet, stinky Costa Rica “jungle clothes”…on the morning of your presentation.

* TEDx is really cool. You might even meet someone like, oh, say…C-3PO. Though he’s harder to spot without the full metal body suit.

Finally, as exciting as the traveling’s been, it’s always a joy to come back home to family.

Here’s to an even more fruitful and exciting 2012! Oh, and don’t forget to BUY YOUR YERT DVDs before the holidays – they make great gifts!

Happy Holidays!
-B (& J & M)