November  2016 Newsletter
Our December Hope

Dear Friends of the Media Center,
We are writing to share our December hope. Turns out that the pundits and pollsters were way off in their predictions as to how Americans would vote. How did this happen? As Bernard Shaw said, "The biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it has taken place." Remember the "generation gap" of the 1960s? Today, we are suffering a communication gap.
We must now acknowledge an America that is sharply divided by ideology, life experience and polarizing rhetoric. Making assumptions, demonizing and labeling each other are "cop outs," used to avoid the hard work and the pain of understanding and empathizing with another's point of view. Author Andrew Boyd says that, "Compassion hurts. When you feel connected to everything, you also feel responsible for everything. And you cannot turn away. Your destiny is bound with the destinies of others." Aristotle put it even more simply, "To perceive is to suffer."
We at Midpen believe it is time to rise to meet the times ahead. As a grassroots community media center, we are uniquely positioned to provide a platform and the tools for community dialog about tough topics like racism, poverty, immigration and the environment.  We have three community and two government TV channels, a regional channel, our webstreams, plus 26 years of experience.  What if our entire community used these tools?
Our mission is to eradicate the digital divide, to give a voice to the voiceless, so that all may have a place at the negotiating table. By fostering engagement, we build bridges of change that inspire others to change. We are all immigrants, we are all Americans and we are all in this life together.  Because of our mission, we have a mandate to work harder than ever for social justice through the democratization of media.
We invite you to share our December hope. A new year is about to start and together, sharing our resources, we can use the tools of media to heal through hearing, to love through listening, and to seek to understand and to be understood. And that's when the magic happens.  Problems that seemed insurmountable can be solved together.  
Won't you join us in 2017 in exploring new pathways to community dialog? Please visit us during one of our bimonthly orientations, check out our workshops and volunteer opportunities or drop in for a visit. With gratitude and hope, we thank you for your support in the past and in the future.  

As you watch this Midpen promotional video created by Doug Kreitz, please consider ways to deepen your connection to us.   Your time, your talent and your treasure combine to keep the lights on in the building and the fire burning in our hearts as we, as a community, dedicate ourselves to sharing our stories and speaking our truths.  To make a tax-deductible contribution please follow this link to our website and click on the donate button.

With deep appreciation and best wishes,

Barbara Noparstak                         Annie Folger
Board President                             Executive Director

MidPen Media Splash Video

Movies Return to the Old Varsity - Midpen to Sponsor 1st Reel Impact Film Festival  by Becky Sanders

On Thursday December 1, the first Reel Impact Film Festival (RIFF) will take place at Hanahaus in downtown Palo Alto.  RIFF is the brainchild of early Zoom In grad Paula Saslow, and is a key program of the Palo Alto Impact Center, a new social impact company. Paula, who holds an MFA in film directing, is the festival's creative director.  The event combines her passions for filmmaking and social impact causes.  

The RIFF team has asked us to come on board to sponsor technical support for the festivities, provide volunteer ushers, a videographer for the evening and to donate gift certificates for our workshops.   In addition to the screening of the best promo submissions, there will be a panel discussion, plus workshops that help social impact enterprises get their story out via digital image.  We are proud to help sponsor what promises to be a magical evening.   The event is open to the public.  Visit eventbrite to learn more.

Sports Report - Thank You Chuck, Welcome Sara, and Hello Goldman Grant!  by Becky Sanders

The MC Sports crew bid farewell to Chuck Alley this fall.  Chuck has left to accept a production position with Silicon Angle, a tech-focused video journalism company based here in Palo Alto.  Chuck handpicked his successor - experienced studio tech and Studio TV camp counselor Sara Bennett.  Chuck worked both jobs during the short transition, and then Sara was swimming on her own.  Having already produced a half dozen games & events with the kids, Sara's ability to relate to and motivate the youth promises to insure the MC Sports Broadcasting program's continued vitality and growth.

Chuck walked into Midpen in the fall of 2011 and asked how he could help.  Over the next few years, Chuck took what was a nascent volunteer sports coverage program and turned it into a key component of Midpen's youth development efforts.   Chuck worked as a volunteer for over a year to design and launch a more formal program.  With seed funding from Google, with the help of devoted volunteers like Board member Andrew Mellows, and with a steady influx of individual donations earmarked for sports, Chuck made the program sustainable.  Now we are able to cover dozens of high school games during the academic year plus sports broadcasting camps during the summer.  However, funding for the future is always a concern.

One of MC Sports's exciting current initiatives is the Youth Sports Broadcasting and Career Horizons project being funded by a grant from the John and Marcia Goldman FoundationThe Foundation is committed to youth in underserved communities.   In low income households, having more than one computer is rare and access to media technology is not guaranteed to every student in every school.  MC Sports is tackling the digital divide headon by bringing the Sports truck to these kids.  Partnering with other youth-serving non-profits such as the East Palo Alto YMCA, Midpen seeks not only to train youth in new skills, but to expand their horizons by visits with Bay Area sports broadcasting pros. 

Under the guise of having fun, making new friends and eating pizza, MC Sports actually provides team building, vocational education, media literacy training, and personal development to the youth served.   When youth realize they can go from watching to doing, from consuming to creating, they can expand that lesson to all aspects of their lives.  They can create the future they want with confidence, no matter what field they eventually choose.   We're thankful to Chuck for his service, to Sara for picking up the mantle and to the Goldman Foundation for recognizing the value of this unique program that opens up new horizons for our youth.

MC Sports  - Menlo Atherton versus Woodside
Click here to go to the MC Sports Playlist

Visit our SMUGMUG Site to see fabulous photos of our MC Sports kids in action!
Volunteer Appreciation and Holiday Party - Save the Date!
Santa and Friends to Gather on December 14

Every year our volunteers, donors, staff and board members come together to celebrate our incredible cadre of dedicated and passionate volunteers!  As Paul George, producer of OTHER VOICES for Peninsula Peace and Justice said, "Nowhere do I see t hat kind of cohesiveness among a group of volunteers like I do with our program here at the Media Center...They're part of our team too."   We could not say it better! Please join us,  you Stars of the Studio.  You're the reason we shine!  Look for more information in your inbox or ask a Midpen staffmember.

Upcoming Workshops & Events

Zoom In

Network with other video makers while mastering the basics of field production from shooting to lighting to audio to editing and uploading to YouTube.

Starts Jan 23

HDTV Studio

Learn TV production, graphics, directing, cameras, hosting, audio and so much more. You will then crewed on a TV show.

Starts Nov. 29

Documentary Filmmaking

Our series continues with filmmaker
Dianne Griffin. Next topic - "How to Crowdsource
Your Project."

Wed. Dec 7

Editing with Final Cut X

Learn how to edit. Build a timeline of video clips, add titles, credits, music & then polish your video.

Sat & Sun
Dec 3 & 4

One on One
Instruction & Consulting

Tutoring in all video-related topics, as well as honing your presentation skills to be comfortable on camera!  

Contact: info@midpen-

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