Ebertfest: In the Audience’s Words (Part Two)

As Ebertfest 2019 sits on the calendar less than one week away, we continue sharing some testimonials from attendees of past festivals to help explain just how #OutsideofOrdinary an event like this is! This week, a look at two festival attendees who love film, and engage with it up close and personal at the festival.


Big Event, Same Tight Knit Community


“No sooner had I put “attending a film festival” on my bucket list than an announcement for the 19th annual Ebertfest magically appeared on my Facebook page. It was clearly fate that brought me and the Ebert Facebook page together. As a student at the University of Illinois during the same time that Roger Ebert had been the Daily Illini Editor, I felt a special connection to attending THIS film festival. After my husband agreed to join me, I quickly bought our festival passes. I was so excited!


My husband picked up on my excitement and wanted to make this a really special experience for me. He did some online research and secretly upgraded us to become Ebertfest sponsors with VIP passes. At the time he gave me this gift, I thought it was very nice but had NO idea what amazing opportunities and experiences were in store for us. The impact has been life changing.” – Ellie


Working with Roger and a Lifelong Dedication


“Roger and I had been friends since we met at the News Gazette when I was writing articles while in college and Roger was in high school covering sports in Urbana. Roger of course, was very brilliant and extremely kind and considerate. He was one of the few people I know who never interrupted anyone when they were speaking as much as he might have wanted to.

I’ve been involved with Ebertfest since the very beginning, both sponsoring and attending the festival, and each year my dedication to Roger and now Chaz keeps me coming back. The films are always fascinating and I become even more anxious to see them once they are finally announced.” – Betsy H.

For more on Ebertfest, visit the link here.

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