To celebrate the home entertainment release of the hit movie Storm Boy, @gooddeedent is donating a portion of the profits to the World Animal Foundation from April 18 to April 22, in honor of #EarthDay! Join #StormBoy in helping wild pelicans thrive by purchasing a DVD or Digital Download of the film, or by adopting a pelican through World Animal Foundation.
Storm Boy is adapted from the 1976 Australian novella by a Colin Thiele. Storm Boy tells the story of the young, lonely Michael 'Storm Boy' Kingley who rescues a trio of orphaned pelican hatchlings, forming a loving bond with the birds which enriches all of their lives as well as those around them in their small Australian town.
The World Animal Foundation (WAF) is a non-profit organization, based in Vermilion, Ohio, dedicated to the preservation and protection of the planet and the animals that inhabit it. WAF works through public education, research, investigations, animal rescue, legislation, special events, and direct action. WAF is an all volunteer organization. The organization has no paid officers and uses all donations towards animal and environmental programs.
Storm Boy is a beautiful and contemporary retelling of Colin Thiele's classic Australian tale. 'Storm Boy' has grown up to be Michael Kingley, a successful retired businessman and grandfather. When Kingley starts to see images from his past that he can't explain, he is forced to remember his long-forgotten childhood, growing up on an isolated coastline with his father. He recounts to his grand-daughter the story of how, as a boy, he rescued and raised an extraordinary orphaned pelican, Mr Percival. Their remarkable adventures and very special bond has a profound effect on all their lives. Based on the beloved book, Storm Boy is a timeless story of an unusual and unconditional friendship.
Colin Thiele’s novella Storm Boy, which tells the story of a young boy and his extraordinary friendship with an orphaned pelican on South Australia’s remote Coorong National Park, has enchanted and moved Australians for over half a century.
Sydney based producer Matthew Street (TOMORROW, WHEN THE WAR BEGAN, THE BANK JOB, W, THE MESSENGER) had studied the book in primary school, as many Australian school children still do, a memory that drew him in 2013 to take notice of a new stage adaptation.
“The Barking Gecko Theatre Company from Western Australia was staging the play in partnership with the Sydney Theatre Company,” recalls Street. “I tried to book tickets for myself and my 11-year-old son, but it was sold out. I returned to the Ambience Entertainment office and told my producing partner Michael Boughen.”
Boughen (TOMORROW, WHEN THE WAR BEGAN, THE LOVED ONES, KILLER ELITE) continues: “I said to Matthew, ‘I didn’t know it was a play’ and he said, ‘Yes, and the season is fully booked out’. That started me thinking about the Storm Boy phenomenon. I started to explore the possibilities, spoke to the publishers and within about a month Ambience had secured the film adaptation rights.”
Street and Boughen had both seen the 1976 film adaptation and strongly recalled the emotional connection they had with it.
“I was probably the age of Storm Boy at the time, maybe a little younger,” says Street, “and the film was dealing with life issues that were relatable to me, as a kid, but to adults as well.”
The producers recognized that the themes of Thiele’s 1963 book are just as relevant, and in some ways more so, today.
“The themes are universal,” says Boughen. “The story deals with friendship, with love, with family, loss and hope. It also deals with ecological issues. It's not overplayed, but there is a message in it that we need to look after what we hold dear, for ourselves and for future generations.”
From the outset, the producers wanted to ensure that the new film would have at its centre the spirit of what makes people want to read Thiele’s book more than 50 years after its first publication.
However, Storm Boy would not be a remake of the 1976 film. As such, Boughen and Street decided to remain true to Thiele’s original setting; the late 1950s. Additionally, Storm Boy’s tale would be set within a contemporary framework, an additional layer that would give the story and its lessons a new resonance and relevance. This new storyline would imagine Storm Boy as a grandfather and extend the exploration of issues around land and the conservation of the environment.
Screenwriter Justin Monjo (THE SECRET DAUGHTER, SPEAR) was brought in to work on the adaptation, a process that would continue through the next several years.
“Our Storm Boy is a complex story in many ways,” says Michael Boughen. “We spent the next three years writing the script, physically engaging with it, working out the nuances, understanding the journey of each character.”
With an early draft script in hand, the producers began looking at possible directors, wanting to find someone who was passionate about the story and who would be able to draw out the delicate emotional nuances required of the performances and the storytelling.
Shawn Seet (TWO FISTS ONE HEART; DEEP WATER; THE CODE) came up early in discussions because of his body of work and his ability to work with actors to create complex performances.
“From the day I met Shawn, my thoughts and Matthew Street’s thoughts never changed; he was the right person,” recalls Boughen. “The film charts a difficult emotional journey, which would feature a child in the lead, as well as animals, but Shawn understands performers and what they need. He was someone whom we knew could blend all the complex elements together and maintain the focus of the story. From day one, we shared the same vision and never strayed from that vision.”
The producers were particularly taken with Seet’s deep and long-standing connection with the story. “When Michael Boughen asked me to come into the office and told me what the project was, it hit me like lightning,” says Seet.
“I was born in Australia but grew up in Malaysia and came back when I was 12 to live with my mother’s family. My uncle educated me by taking me to see Australian films and one of the first he took me to was Storm Boy. It was the era of the film renaissance in Australia, and there was a great optimism and pride in local films. I still have the film poster at home, so when Michael told me he wanted to make this film, I felt it was meant to be.”
On reading the book again, as well as the draft screenplay, Seet was struck by the ways in which the story allows for a very intimate and individual experience.
“A lot of what resonated for me was the simplicity of their life, the respect for nature and the father and son story,” says Seet. “Moving back to a simpler life are issues and themes that resonate now. We are in a hurly burly world of phones and computers and I think there’s a great desire in people to return to a greater harmony with nature. That’s something I really wanted to capture in this telling of the story.”
Sitting alongside Storm Boy and his father Hideaway Tom is the character of Fingerbone Bill, a Ngarrindjeri man. The participation and involvement of the Ngarrindjeri would be vital, as the film is set on their land, and represents their heritage and culture. The pelican (Nori) is a totem of the Ngarrindjeri.
“The film touches on land rights issues and that’s incredibly relevant today, when I think we’ve still got a long way to go in terms of our relationship with Indigenous people,” says Seet. “We wanted to make the Indigenous aspects in the film absolutely accurate. It’s a sacred place to the Ngarrindjeri and the story has come out of that. To tell a story about unconditional love and living in harmony with the land and with nature could not be told without their help.”
Street continues: “It was very important to us to connect with the Ngarrindjeri people and for them to be actively involved and grant permission for us to film on the Coorong. I think they knew that we would be very respectful to their ways and beliefs.”
“The Ngarrindjeri people assisted us, consulted with us on script, on language and on custom,” adds Boughen. “We wove all of that in to create a more fully formed and truthful story, beyond what was already a great script by Justin Monjo.”
In Thiele’s book and in the 1959 narrative in Storm Boy, the environmental issue explored concerns whether a Coorong bird nesting area will continue to be designated as a hunting ground, or transformed into a conservation sanctuary. In the film’s contemporary narrative, the film touches on the issue of mining and its impact on the environment.
Producer Matthew Street says: “It’s about finding a balance, a balance between human society and not over-exploiting nature and natural resources. That's what was explored, I think, in Thiele’s work, and hopefully we’ve done that justice in our telling of the story.”
To portray Michael Kingley — Storm Boy as an adult — in the present day scenes, Shawn Seet and the producers had one person in mind: Academy Award® winner Geoffrey Rush (SHINE, THE KING’S SPEECH, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN). They approached the actor during development, in order to allow Rush to be involved in the process of refining the script.
Producer Michael Boughen says: “We were extremely lucky that Geoffrey Rush connected with the project. Geoffrey would bring gravitas to the film and to the role, but for him, as it was for us, the script had to explore the story in a way that was really worth the retelling.”
Rush, who also came onto the film as an Executive Producer, says: “I got involved because Shawn Seet, Michael Boughen, Matthew Street and Justin Monjo explained to me the nature of the reinvention of the story for a contemporary audience, of trying to find a door that we could open from 2017 to look back on the story that Colin Thiele set in the 1950s. I hadn’t done an Australian film for a couple of years, and sometimes roles come up that you think, ‘Wow, this sounds fantastic’.”
Geoffrey Rush had never seen the 1976 film, as he was studying in Paris when it was released and chose not to watch the film once he was on board.
“I looked at the trailer of the 1976 film because I wanted to see how it played,” recalls Rush, “and then I read the short story, after reading the screenplay. Colin Thiele awakens your imagination. It’s very interesting to look at how minimalist it is. I think it's only 50 pages of writing and it's a fable, so the idea for the film of Storm Boy in his late 60s telling his granddaughter what his experiences were as he was moving from childhood into adulthood; him telling it as a fable is wonderful because it connects as personal memory rather than ‘and then I did this, and then I did that’.”
The key was to craft a script in which the transitions between the two periods were handled with deftness and purpose.
“It had to have a poetic ease to it, so that no one thinks they’re going to watch a film about somebody narrating it,” says Rush. “Justin Monjo very skilfully echoed the simplicity of the childhood story into the contemporary story, taking some of Thiele’s very sensitive language and incorporating that into the screenplay. It was so visual to read. There were heart stopping moments; it's thrilling storytelling, and very emotive to see a young child being awakened into such a love of the natural world.”
The producers and director Seet wanted to shoot the film in South Australia, which would require support from the South Australian Government through the South Australian Film Corporation, as well as from Screen Australia.
“Both organizations were incredibly supportive, both financially and in our early days of working through the difficulties of financing a film,” says Michael Boughen. “Financing a film is no easy feat, and particularly one that we wanted to make with an international cast and international appeal. Audiences outside Australia generally don’t know Storm Boy as a book or a story, so the international appeal is the relationship between a boy and his best friend; a theme that we believe will resonate with audiences around the world.”
The producers were proud of the way the film was developed, produced, and the messages it will convey to Australian and international audiences, which remain true to the spirit of Thiele’s story. “If Colin Thiele was alive today,” says Matthew Street, “I hope he would give the film his blessing.”
Michael Boughen adds: “A wonderful script was the starting point, then having Shawn on board, then Geoffrey, and the rest of the incredible cast and crew. There wasn't a day that I didn't enjoy filming, in watching scenes come together. I'm incredibly excited and very, very proud of what we achieved.”
View the live webcam overlooking Main Street Beach in downtown Vermilion, Ohio. You can access the live feed 24 hours a day from mainstreetvermilion.org or discoververmilion.org and watch activity on the beach, the lake and in the harbor, storms, sailboat racing, Third Thursdays and more.
The live webcam is a project of Main Street Vermilion and was provided by Ohio's Lake Erie Shores & Islands. The City of Vermilion and Dale Reising assisted in making it operational.
Many people do not know, or remember, that the restaurant known as McGarvey's was originally built, owned and operated by Charles Helfrich. That was in 1929, shortly after the new bridge was built across the river. The old bridge crossed a little south of the present location.
Mr. Helfrich operated a small boat and canoe rental business on the east side of the river. The proposed new bridge nearly touched his building and also diverted traffic away from it. So he purchased the land just north of the new bridge and built a restaurant and boat rental business there. Home cooked dinners, sandwiches and homemade pies were the first attractions. The business prospered and Helfrich's became a busy place. The canoe and boat business were also thriving. Canoeing on the river was a popular pastime in those days, especially on Sunday afternoons.
In 1934 Mr. Helfrich died and two years later Mrs. Helfrich sold the enterprises to Charlie McGarvey's. After his death, Mrs. McGarvey sold her husband's business to Charles Solomon, son of Eddie Solomon. The restaurant was one of the most well known eating places along the lake shore, popular with both "landlubbers" and boaters.
In the year 2000, the Vermilion Port Authority purchased the McGarvey's property and razed the building. The property became a transient marina and restaurant named Red Clay on the River, now Quaker Steak & Lube.
Watching the many species of birds that inhabit your ecosystem is a fun and fascinating pastime the whole family can enjoy together. Winter is the best time to feed birds as they need the food more than at any other time of year and you will typically see a greater number and variety of birds at bird feeders. Many interesting birds from the north fly south in winter, and in spring many species return home from lands in the south, providing a great variety of species to see.
The World Animal Foundation of Vermilion, Ohio offers these tips for backyard birding:
You don’t need to spend money on food or feeders to attract birds to your yard. If you can leave a small area of your yard un-mowed, you can attract a lot of birds. They eat the seeds from the grasses and weeds and use the area for cover as well.
Employing a feeder grants the ability for close study of birds. While all feeders draw birds, those that keep the bird feed dry and free of mold are best. Moldy seeds are bad for bird health. Place feeders either near a window or fairly far away to help prevent birds from colliding with windows when startled. The most common feeder is a hopper or house feeder, usually made of windows of clear plastic that feed seed to a perching surface. These feeders attract cardinals, nuthatches, chickadees, grosbeaks, buntings and titmice. One without a lot of perching surface minimizes use by house sparrows or starlings. The most important thing is to keep feeders clean by washing with bleach water every few weeks. Washing with bleach water prevents the spread of disease.
Although slightly more expensive, bird food with black oil sunflower seeds attract a wide variety of desirable birds. A suet feeder attracts woodpeckers, nuthatches, chickadees and bluejays. Some birders push suet or peanut butter into crevices in bark or in the cracks of old stumps to attract birds. Witnessing a northern flicker or red-bellied woodpecker feeding at close range sears a delightful memory into the mind of a youngster. Woodpeckers love dead branches on trees. Leave a dead branch on a tree to attract woodpeckers if it is safe to do so.
It is important to provide water for birds in winter too. Place the water in a spot in the yard that receives sun as its rays will melt some water for birds on even the coldest days.
A good guide book is essential for identifying birds. Looking up unfamiliar birds and learning about their distinguishing characteristics is part of the fun of birding. Modestly priced binoculars now have coated lenses and other features that make them acceptable choices for bird watching. Don’t get zoom binoculars for birding. You tend to lose clarity at high magnification. A wide angle pair lets in more light and makes it easier to find birds.
Bird watching is a good way to introduce kids into the outdoors and spark awareness of our natural world. Backyard birding is a family-friendly way to enjoy wildlife viewing. Plus, it is just plain fun.
Have things to donate? The Vermilion Salvation Army accepts donations every Tuesday from 9 am to 1 pm.
Serving Vermilion community members in need, the Vermilion Salvation Army operates a food pantry, provides coats and other clothing, sends young grade schoolers home with food backpacks, and offers UCAN direct assistance.
Items accepted include, but are not limited to:
The Vermilion Salvation Army is located at 4560 Liberty Avenue in Vermilion, Ohio. Contact the Vermilion Salvation Army office for more information at (440) 967-5446.
Cleaning up the yard this weekend? Mayor Forthofer has announced that Republic will begin the separate yard waste collection Wednesday, April 17th. The collections will continue every Wednesday until December.
"Put your compostable waste on your tree lawn and in paper yard bags," said Mayor Forthofer. "Branches should be in 4 foot bundles bound with twine. No plastic bags or string, please."
You can also put up to 40 pounds of yard waste in your blue can, according to Mayor Forthofer.
The Eagle Has Landed: Apollo 11’s 50th Anniversary, with speaker Eric Rivet, takes place on Wednesday, May 1, 2019 at 7:30 pm at the Historic Brownhelm School & Museum, 1940 North Ridge Road in Vermilion.
July 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing. Join Eric Rivet for a discussion on the Apollo program and learn about the space race between NASA and the Soviet Union and the technology behind one of the greatest scientific achievements in human history.
Doors open at 6 pm; Brownhelm Historical Association business meeting takes place from 6:30 pm to 7 pm; social time is 7 pm; program begins at 7:30 pm. Note there will be a 50/50 Raffle at upcoming BHA meetings.
Baton Rouge, Louisiana native, Eric Rivet has worked in the museum field for 22 years. He worked on two historic naval ships, the USS Kidd DD-661 and the USS Slater DE-766, as a docent and education coordinator. He then worked as a curator at the National World War II Museum in New Orleans for six years. In 2015, Rivet became the Chief Curator of the Western Reserve Historical Society in Cleveland.
Mayor Forthofer announces that from now through the summer, WOW CABLE will be constructing a network of fiber cable lines in preparation for offering video, internet and phone service to Vermilion residents.
According to the mayor, contractors working on behalf of WOW will have identification on their trucks when installing buried cable or hanging cable from phone poles.
"Homeowners will receive notification from WOW when contractors are working in their area," stated Mayor Forthofer.
The first streets to see construction will be: Edison, N Berkley, Thomas Alva, Telegraph, Firestone, Ford, Cinema and Menlo Park.
"WOW is working in cooperation with the Services Director and Tree Commission," said the mayor.
Public libraries today are about much more than just books. Public libraries equal strong communities.
More than a quarter of U.S. households don’t have a computer with an internet connection. Libraries provide free public computers with internet access, vital to people searching for jobs and trying to connect with government services. At Ritter Public Library in Vermilion, Ohio the public uses the internet more than 120 times a day.
Learning to read is the first step to success at school and libraries help parents get their little ones off to a good start. Teens find something fun to do every day after school at their library. Every month, more than 800 participants enjoy programs in Ritter’s youth services departments.
Libraries help people find jobs by connecting them with important resources and helping them use career-development tools. The public can schedule free, half-hour appointments with Ritter’s reference staff for one-on-one assistance with questions about resources, technology and more. Call (440) 967-3798.
Ritter also provides free meeting space for groups and organizations. Nearly 700 people – from scouts to city councils – gather in meeting rooms at Ritter every month. And Ritter helps preserve the unique stories of our town in its local history collection.
For every dollar spent by Ohio’s public libraries, $5 worth of direct economic benefit is returned to Ohioans. The Ohio Library Council recently conducted a statewide return on investment study showing Ohio’s public libraries save residents money and also directly benefit the state’s economy.
Get your money’s worth at your public library. Ritter is open from 9:30 am to 8:30 pm Monday through Thursday; from 9:30 am to 5:30 pm Friday and Saturday; and from 1 pm to 5 pm Sunday. Access library services anytime at www.ritterpubliclibrary.org.
Mayor Forthofer has announced Clean Up Vermilion Day will take place on May 18, 2019. Grab a rake and help get Vermilion ready for another beautiful summer season.
The shredder will be at Victory Park from 9 am to noon.
"Residents can bring as much as they want to be shredded," said Mayor Forthofer.
"People interested in cleaning up our beautiful city can form groups or come to City Hall. Anne Maiden, Administrative Assistant, will give out assignments," said Mayor Forthofer. "Bring rakes and tools."
Some elderly or disabled residents need assistance cleaning up their properties.
"The City of Vermilion can hook you up," said the mayor. "Gloves and bags can be provided."
This year marks the 50th anniversary of Vermilion's infamous Fourth of July flood. Were you there? Have you always wanted to hear just what happened? Share the story!
On Sunday, July 7, from 2 pm to 5 pm, you're invited to reminisce about the famous flood that rocked Vermilion 50 years ago at the Vermilion Boat Club, 5416 Liberty Avenue. This event includes a potluck; please bring a dish to share.
On Monday, July 8 at 7 pm, hear the personal stories about Vermilion's famous flood in live interviews which will be recorded and archived at Ritter Public Library, 5680 Liberty Avenue.
Donations will be accepted for Vermilion Salvation Army, which provided emergency relief during the flood and continues to serve the community today.
Where were you during the famous flood? Share your personal story, photos and other mementos, which will be recorded and preserved in the local history collection at Ritter Public Library, while you keep your own originals. Call (440) 967-3798, or send your written memories to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sponsored by Eileen Bulan and Anne Maiden, Vermilion Area Archival Society, Vermilion History Museum and Ritter Public Library.
For more information, call Eileen Bulan at (440) 967-5371.
Art and creativity play an important part in historic downtown Vermilion. The Main Street Vermilion Arts Guild inspires and encourages artistic expression through their members—all local artists and craftsmen who display their work at the gallery inside the Main Street Vermilion Building at 685 Main Street. The gallery features watercolors and acrylics, photography, original jewelry, woodworking, ceramics and pottery and more and changes with each approaching season.
During show dates, The Vermilion Arts Guild Gallery is open Monday-Friday from 12 pm to 4 pm and Saturday-Sunday from 12 pm to 4 pm. Look for these special shows featuring original works of arts from local artists and fine craftsmen. Shows change seasonally.
Birds in Art Show: April 27 - May 19
Spring into Summer Show: May 25 - July 7
Sea and Shore Art Show: July 13 - September 8
Nature's Bounty Art Show: September 14 - November 3
Holiday Art Show and Sale: November 9 - December 22
Since 2003, Vermilion in Bloom has changed the way our town looks by brightening the streetscape throughout downtown with flowers, improving public gathering places, coordinating the addition of "urban friendly" trees, dressing the town for the holidays and so much more. Their work delivers a sense of pride as visitors and residents alike marvel at the sight, even stopping to say "thanks" to the daily watering crews for their volunteerism.
There are more than 100 volunteers who help in many ways: planting flower baskets and beds, tending plantings, daily watering crews, light maintenance, cooking and baking for the popular Ladies Night and more.
A Classic Car And Motorcycle Cruise-In, hosted by NextDirection4Me and The Lucy Idol Center, takes place on Sunday, July 21, 2019 from 11 am to 5 pm at American Legion Post 397 in Vermilion, Ohio.
Commemorative dash plaques will be given to the first 50 participants. The event will feature 50/50 and basket raffles, food and beverages (non-alcoholic), and DJ services provided by Outlaw Entertainment.
All vehicles are welcome. The event is open to the public.
All proceeds from this event will benefit Next Direction 4 Me, a subsidiary program of The Lucy Idol Center.
No registration necessary. Donations will be welcome.
American Legion Post 397 is located at 2713 State Road in Vermilion, Ohio.
For more information, call Chris Williams at (440) 967-6724, or email email@example.com.
Downtown Vermilion's newest restaurant, The Pavilion Grill, will open at the site of the old Simple Pleasures on Liberty Avenue in May. Joe Jesko and Jeremy Crawford will continue to operate their highly popular food truck at Pence Lake Erie Lanes on Liberty Avenue.
The food truck owners are expanding their operations into a brick and mortar restaurant in the historical part of downtown Vermilion.
Because the operators are investing time into getting the restaurant ready for summer, the Pavilion Food Truck will have a modified menu and hours. But customers will still be able to get sandwiches and entrees for lunch and dinner at the restaurant this summer.
The food truck will be open Thursdays and Fridays from 5 pm to 10 pm every week at Pence Lake Erie Lanes. Watch for grand opening details of the downtown Vermilion restaurant.
Mayor Forthofer announces Vermilion Road will be closed northbound from Brownhelm Station Road to Liberty Avenue through July 15.
"Long a concern of residents, this deteriorated and sometimes dangerous road will finally be replaced through a grant to the City of Vermilion by ODOT through the Erie County MPO," said Mayor Forthofer.
There will be one southbound lane only during construction.