The 2014 Flyway Film Festival opens on Thursday, October 23rd with the annual Kickoff Gala at the Villa Bellezza Winery in Pepin. Featuring food, libations, music, a keynote address, and the Festival awards ceremony, the Gala is a must-attend event for independent film aficionados and industry professionals alike. Join the Lake Pepin “glitterati” as we roll out the red carpet for our film friends from across the globe!

Villa wineThe evening begins at 6:00 with an array of drinks and hors d’oeuvres catered by local restaurateurs. At 8:00 award-winning producer Nicolas Gonda, one of Variety’s “10 Producers to Watch,” will give the keynote address. Gonda is co-founder of the rapidly-expanding company Tugg, Inc., a web platform that enables audiences to choose the films that play in their local theaters.

Fred Thornton and Jeremy Wilker

Producer Frederick Thornton and cinematographer Jeremy Wilker enjoy their 2013 Flyway Axe awards

Following the keynote, Flyway director Rick Vaicius will present the Festival “Axe” awards, designed by Wisconsin sculptor David Culver. The evening continues with music by the up-and-coming Minneapolis band Sun Gods to Gamma Rays. Called “restrained, powerful, potent and cool” by l’etoile Magazine, the band’s “trippy, ethereal sounds will make you want to get up and dance” (Minnesota Monthly).

Sun Gods to Gamma Rays

Sun Gods to Gamma Rays

Full Festival Pass holders, Kickoff Gala ticket holders, and specially-invited Festival guests and sponsors are welcome at this event. Tickets are $35 here or at the door.

Registered Gala guests are asked to check in at the Box Office at the Villa Bellezza Winery upon arrival.