Community Celebrates at Launch Party for 5th Annual Water: Take 1 Online Short Film Festival

[2jslideshow id=”2616″]

Over 100 community members and water professionals turned out to celebrate the launch of the 5th annual Water: Take 1 Film Festival at the Crowne Plaza Ventura Beach hotel held Wednesday night, Sept. 21. City of Ventura Councilmembers Carl Morehouse and Jim Monahan were among the local dignitaries present.

Morehouse told the crowd that the city’s film festival has a global reach. It’s also launched a year-round dialogue that has grown to include two annual events plus a monthly newsletter. “This invites an international audience to share our message online,” Morehouse said.

“Water: Take 1 is a homegrown campaign that keeps the conversation going not only about the importance of local sustainable initiatives, but also the global perspective that sharpens our local focus back to a ‘one water’ mindset as you will see tonight,” said the event host, Ventura Water General Manager Shana Epstein.

Water: Take 1 aims to create a greater awareness of water as a valuable resource by inviting filmmakers worldwide to submit short films of five minutes or less in any genre – drama, documentary, comedy, animation, sci-fi or experimental – that address the topic of water. Awards include the Audience Choice Award, voted on by the general public with the winner receiving an iPad; the award for Best Student Short Film, chosen by a jury of entertainment and water industry experts with a GoPro camera for a prize; the Grand Prize of $1,500 presented by Ventura Water; and the Ventura Vision Award, which recognizes films shot in and around Ventura and offers a $500 cash prize.

Film submissions are now being accepted through Dec. 14. Winners will be announced at a celebration event to be held in Ventura in the spring of 2017. Last year, 48 films were entered from around the globe.

Expanding on last year’s efforts to engage other local water agencies, the Palmdale Water District was introduced as a new partner and is sponsoring the Palmdale Vision Award, recognizing films that best represent its mission and objectives, also for a $500 cash prize. The Palmdale Water District was the 2015 grand prizewinner for their humor-filled film entry, The Conservation Enforcer.

Other new film festival partners this year include Change the Course (, a national movement to engage the public, the community and corporations to restore fresh water to people and nature, and Waves for Water (, which has a focused international mission to bring clean water to the entire world.

Finally, Epstein thanked the many sponsors and partners who made Water: Take 1 possible. Sponsors included: Crowne Plaza Ventura Beach, Palmdale Water District, Nossaman, Carollo Engineering, Hopkins Groundwater Consultants and Kennedy/ Jenks Consultants. Strategic Sponsors included: Alliance for Water Efficiency, CAPS-TV, Dexter’s Camera, Downtown Ventura Partners, Ventura Chamber of Commerce Green Task Force, California-Nevada Section American Water Works Association, Association of Water Agencies: Ventura County, Surfrider Foundation-Ventura County Chapter, Never Without a Picture, Ventura Hillside Conservancy, Friends of the Ventura River, Ventura Film Society, Matilija Coalition, Film Ventura, CA, City of Ventura Parks, Recreation and Community Partnerships, Ventura Unified School District and the Ventura City Fire Department.





Launch of the 5th Annual Water: Take 1 Online Short Film Festival

[2jslideshow id=”2616″]

For Immediate Release

September 22, 2016

Contact: Craig Jones, 805-223-4378

Shana Epstein, 805-652-4503

Festival Info: Rachael Shapiro, 310-991-9568

Ventura Water announces 5th Annual Water: Take 1 Online Short Film Festival

Ventura, CA — Last night, Ventura Water celebrated the launch of the 5th annual Water:Take 1 Online Short Film Festival with a kick-off reception emphasizing efforts in water protection, conservation and sustainability taking place on the local, national and global level. The Film Festival highlights our relationship with water, through the powerful medium of film, and draws attention to the growing challenges facing our water supply locally and internationally.

Filmmakers of all ages, around the world, are encouraged to submit their work (up to 5 minutes in length) via direct upload at the contest site – – and must address the topic of water in any genre including animation, comedy, documentary, drama, experimental or sci-fi. Films will be posted online and a jury of entertainment and environmental experts will vote to award prizes in categories such as the Grand Jury Prize, Ventura Vision Award and Best Student Short Film. The public is also encouraged to take part in the Audience Choice Award by voting online for their favorite film.  The deadline for film submissions is December 14, 2016 with voting for the Audience Choice Award open through January 14, 2017.  The winning films we be showcased at an Awards Celebration in March of 2017.

“Ventura Water is pleased to showcase the topic of water protection, conservation and sustainability to like-minded individuals and organizations in such a creative and engaging way.  With the drought uppermost in the minds of Californians, this Short Film Festival brings together our local, national and global conversations,” said Shana Epstein, Ventura Water General Manager.

Ventura Water also welcomed new partner, The Palmdale Water District, which came on board this year as a sponsor of the Palmdale Vision Award, recognizing films which best represent the mission of the Palmdale Water District.  “I was very excited to learn that we had the opportunity to be a sponsor this year,” said Vincent Dino, Board member for the Palmdale Water District.  “Ventura Water has found an exciting way to bring the stewards of water together and creatively share an extremely important message about the value of water.”  Returning sponsors for the festival include Carollo Engineers, Crowne Plaza Ventura Beach, Hopkins Groundwater Consultants, Kennedy/Jenks Consultants, and Nossaman LLP.

This release is available on the City of Ventura website


Also visit:

You’re Invited to the 5th Annual Kick Off Reception for Water: Take 1 on September 21, 6-8pm

Press Release2013

You’re Invited to Water: Take 1’s Cocktail Reception kicking off the 5th Annual Water: Take 1 Online Short Film Festival on Wednesday, September 21, 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m., at the Crowne Plaza Ventura Beach Hotel. Find out more about this FREE EVENT and RSVP, Click Here.