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Film is Truth to promote education, resources in new space

Customer Joe Gibson of Ferndale rents a movie from manager Dee Dee Chapman at Film is Truth in downtown Bellingham on March 27, 2015. The video rental store is transitioning from a company to a nonprofit.
Customer Joe Gibson of Ferndale rents a movie from manager Dee Dee Chapman at Film is Truth in downtown Bellingham on March 27, 2015. The video rental store is transitioning from a company to a nonprofit. The Bellingham Herald

Film is Truth, the video rental store at 211 W. Holly St. that is transitioning into a nonprofit organization, will be moving to the Public Market building at 1530 Cornwall Ave. The move will start in September once renovations are complete.

Since becoming a nonprofit, Film is Truth has focused on expanding its offerings to include community education and resources for regional filmmakers, with classes, workshops, and opportunities for interactions between local and regional film lovers. It has also been expanding its already large collection of movies.

The store has been on Holly for about 17 years.

“We’ve loved our space on Holly Street,” says board member and manager Dee Dee Chapman. “However, as Bellingham has become a destination, rents have been constantly increasing. While our business has remained steady, the cost of the spaces around us has risen, and for a long time our current location has been affordable to us primarily because of the generosity of our landlord, Daylight Property Management.”

“As we made our plans for the future, we knew it was time for us to move into a space that was more sustainable,” she says.“We wanted to take advantage of the opportunity to find a location that would help us grow as a nonprofit. We wanted a location that would help us to fulfill our mission in new and exciting ways.”

If Film Is Truth is to serve as a community resource, Chapman says it needs to be housed in a community center, and the Public Market has already built one on Cornwall Avenue.

Centrally located, Chapman says the Public Market hosts many of the local businesses that Film is Truth customers already visit regularly, including Terra Organica, Trapeze Cafe, Electric Beet Juice Co. and Ambo Ethiopian Cuisine.

“Our new space is accessible and convenient, with plenty of free parking right outside our doors,” Chapman says. “In the coming months, we’ll be doing some major renovations to the south side of the Public Market building, where our new space will be. Keep an eye on our Facebook page and email newsletter for updates.”

Film Is Truth incorporated as a nonprofit in January. The next step, gaining federal tax-exempt status, could come by the end of the year.

Karl Freske and Emily Marston, the owners of Film Is Truth 24 Times a Second, plan to donate the store’s collection more than 17,000 movies on DVD, Blu-ray and VHS to the nonprofit. The nonprofit will keep the collection, which features classic movies, documentaries, hard-to-find films, and current releases, available to the public as a fee-for-service library.

When moving time comes, the store will need plenty of volunteers to help out, so people can stop by sign up if they want to lend a hand, Chapman says.

A fundraiser for Film is Truth is coming up soon. The Shakedown, 1212 N. State St., will host a “Movie-Karaoke-Fundraising” event for people 21 and older at 7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 29, with Chad Petersen’s Front Porch Swing; movie-theme karaoke with Aireekah, and a late-night DJ dance party. There will also be a costume contest, with a makeup artist at the event.

Doors open at 6:30 p.m., music starts at 7. Suggested donation is $5.

Reach Margaret Bikman at 360-715-2273 or margaret.bikman@bellinghamherald.com.

Film is Truth 24 Times a Second

Details: 360-752-0159, filmistruth.com, and Facebook.

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