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River Bend Film Festival kicks off, local businesses to benefit

GOSHEN, Ind. -

A last minute light check, lay out the red carpet, and set the stage. The 15th year for the River Bend Film Festival in Michiana is finally here!

“This is the second year that its been in Goshen,” said Gina Leichty, Co-Director for the River Bend Film Festival.

But Goshen has one thing on its mind: to shatter some more attendance records. Last year, organizers attracted around two thousand people, far more than they had ever brought in before. This year they’re pulling out all the stops with Hollywood actresses.

“We have 13 people from the film making industry who are coming as featured guests. Beth Grant is one of our featured guests, she was in ‘Little Miss Sunshine’, she was in ‘Donnie Darko’,” said Leichty.

In 3 days, they’ll have more 80 films for visitors to watch, but visitors aren’t the only ones benefitting from this new annual tradition.

“As people are coming to the festival, they’re also visiting the local businesses and the local restaurants and staying in local hotels,” said Leichty.

Leichty says the festival nets a positive economic gain for local Goshen businesses, especially for newer businesses on the block, like a certain brewery nearby.

“We’re still fairly new, just a couple years in almost so, just exciting for us to get new people in to try what we’re doing and help spread the word,” said Jesse Sensenig, Owner of Goshen Brewing Company just a few blocks away from the Goshen Theater.

Sensenig says rain or shine, he and his team are getting ready for the rush of crowds.

“Larger crowds and having to deal with some of the waits, depending on weather, too, we have the outdoor patio, but really were kind prepped and ready for busy business,” said Sensenig.

The film festival will run through Saturday around 10:00 p.m. Online ticket sales are closed so if you want a ticket, you can pick one up at the Goshen Theater ticket office on Main Street.

Prices for tickets vary since they have different options available. Click here for more ticket information.

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