Ohio River Foundation (ORF) will again bring one of the largest environmental film festivals in North America to Cincinnati this spring. The Wild & Scenic Film Festival inspires environmental activism and a love for nature through film. This year, the festival will be on Friday, April 19 at Woodward Theater in Over-the-Rhine.

The Festival works with environmental groups across the US to host local film festivals as a way to reach into their communities, inspire activism, increase awareness for grassroots environmental causes, and generate critical funds. Wild & Scenic on Tour is taking place in cities across the country including Chicago, Houston, Washington DC, and many others. We are excited to bring the festival to Cincinnati to show our city’s commitment to environmental activism and love for nature.

  • When: Friday, April 19. Films start at 7:30 pm. (Doors will open at 6:00 pm for food, refreshments, and socializing.)
  • Where: Woodward Theater. 1404 Main St, Cincinnati, OH 45202
  • What: The festival will feature a series of short films from talented environmental filmmakers from all over the world, lite bites, a cash bar, and a raffle.

Ohio River Foundation hopes to use the festival to provide community understanding of the connection we share with the planet and our role as stewards to keep it healthy for the next generations.

The Festival was started by the watershed advocacy group, the South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL) in 2003. The home festival kicks off the international tour to communities around the globe, allowing SYRCL to share their success as an environmental group with other organizations.


To learn more about sponsoring the 2024 Wild & Scenic Film Festival, visit our 2024 sponsorship page. Contact Bethany Miller at bmiller@ohioriverfdn.org for more information and payment options. If you’d like to submit sponsorship payment online, click here. 

2024 Featured Films

Flowing – My Dream of Freedom – The river itself speaks about its dream of flowing wilder and freer again. Dams, weirs, and other obstacles disrupt the natural functioning of rivers and are detrimental to migrating fish, other river wildlife, and ultimately us humans. The good news is that we can change this. Obsolete stone and concrete barriers can be removed, helping river ecosystems bounce back to whole vibrating life!

Mussel Grubbing: A Citizen Science Treasure Hunt – Following a citizen scientist’s journey of discovery, the film explores the treasure hunt for freshwater mussels in the upper Sangamon River. Finding a diverse collection of healthy mussels means a healthy river and a healthy community. 

Diagonal – Feeling stuck in life, 54-year-old India Wood bucks the traditional way of recreating and strikes a novel path across the state of Colorado. Taking a uniquely in-depth look at the world around her, India’s walk is a celebration of the originality that makes us human and delights in doing things a little bit differently.

Forests Above Forests Below – Take a deep dive into California’s unique and irreplaceable underwater kelp forests that have experienced catastrophic loss in the past decade. This piece was written and supported by scientists at The Nature Conservancy and was filmed and produced by the Coldwater Collective.

Healing Hiłsyaqƛis – Hiłsyaqƛis (Tranquil Creek) is located within the traditional territory of the ƛaʔuukʷiʔatḥ (Tla-o-qui-aht) First Nation approximately 20 km east of Tofino, in Clayoquot Sound, British Columbia. The sharp decline in wild Pacific salmonids in this watershed is poorly understood. It has sparked research, monitoring, and habitat restoration initiatives to address knowledge gaps and restore habitat in hopes of fostering a recovery of wild fish populations within the Tranquil Watershed and contributing to the broader recovery of wild Pacific salmon. 

A Journey Upstream – This is the story of two seemingly unrelated fish that help us understand the connectivity within our environment and the importance of a healthy Chesapeake Bay watershed. 

Danny Macaskill: Do a Wheelie – In the summer of 2021 Danny MacAskill put out a call to action to his 3.5 million social media fans asking them to #WheelieWithDanny. Riders and fans applied from around the world to feature alongside Danny in his latest project from Five Ten and Cut Media. Join Danny MacAskill and a host of friends as he pushes the boundaries of the humble wheelie and learns a thing or two from friends old and new.

6,000 Miles – In 6,000 Miles, Kayla Lopez, a multifaceted artist and river activist, and Steve Evans, the impassioned Wild Rivers Director at CalWild, offer an exciting and educational exploration of California’s Wild Rivers, blending expertise and passion to illuminate the essence and threats to our precious waterways. Their journey unfolds a narrative transcending advocacy, revealing the intricate connection and profound significance of preserving wild rivers.

Soundscape – Soundscape features Erik Weihenmayer, a global adventure athlete and author who is fully blind, as he ascends a massive alpine rock face deep in the Sierra Nevada. The film is a surprising and soulful adventure using expert camera work and emotive, novel animation to bring to life a concept by adaptive climbing pioneer Timmy O’Neill.

STORMY – Stormy, a Master Haida carver, muses in this short zen-like piece about making a canoe by hand on an island in Alaska.

Toxic Art – On a mission to clean up Ohio’s leaking, abandoned coal mines, Ohio University Art Professor John Sabrah teamed up with an engineer to develop a process that turns the toxic runoff pollution into paint. John’s artwork has been shown worldwide, and proceeds have helped numerous environmental organizations and projects, including a new water treatment plant on the Sunday Creek Watershed.  

Thank You to Our 2024 Sponsors! 

Dan & Jill Freshley

Thomas Anthony Sullivan Foundation


Your Donation Makes a Big Impact

  • $25 can provide food for the freshwater mussel “ambassadors” we use in our Mussels in the Classroom program.
  • $100 can buy water quality equipment to enable us to identify pollution problems.
  • $500 can help 50 students be River Explorers for a day of learning in a river or creek.
  • $1,000 can plant 100 native trees to restore critical habitat and help keep our water clean.