The bustling college burg of Columbia, Missouri undergoes a change every March. It starts small- posters proclaiming sponsorship, box offices opening in vacant storefronts. Then, in what seems the blink of an eye, art pops up around town with bus shelters that are art pieces on their own. When the city swells and the bus rides are free, you know True/False has arrived.
True/False is an annual documentary film festival in this quintessential college town equidistant from both Kansas City and St. Louis. Beginning originally in the summer of 2003, the festival continues to grow from its roots as a 3 venue event to 8 screening venues.
But the festival is so much more than these screens. The entire town seems to find a way to participate- local businesses opening their doors and collaborating with other entities to create unique events and parties. For instance, second-year sponsor Harold’s Donuts will be open for 24 hours a day during the festival. In addition, they are pairing with local microdistillery Dogmaster Distillery (some of my favorite people) to bring the Donut Bar from 7-10pm, Fretboard Coffee for Harold’s Late Night from 10pm-6am, and Boss Taco to bring the Taconut to Craft Beer Cellar. And this is only one of the sponsors!
As well as the craziness downtown, buffs of all sort can find their scene. Movie buffs obviously have the documentaries, which forgo traditional as to remove the competitive atmosphere (though the True Vision award is announced prior to the festival for one filmmaker, and funds are raised for the subject of one of the films- this year, it’s Sonita). Filmgoers also have the option for “Secret Screenings” where you may have the chance to see something premiering later in the year, and celebrity sightings are not entirely unheard of.
Music lovers will enjoy the number of bands performing before screenings- many of whom have other scheduled performances around town during the weekend. Art lovers can enjoy an “art ramble” and exercise buffs can participate in the 5k run/walk. There’s so much to do, you’d be hard-pressed to be bored.
True/False Film Festival runs from today (March 3rd) through March 6th in Downtown Columbia, Missouri. You can check out their schedule for screening times, or their website for information regarding events, parties, passes, and more. Also be sure to check out their Facebook page for special announcements.