WIFI Film Festival features ‘The Princess Bride’

The WIFI Film Festival is a FREE three-day event designed for the entire Topeka community.

From Friday, April 29 to Sunday, May 1 the festival features film screenings, workshops and some special events. The community can watch selected films at three locations during the weekend, including Arts Connect, 909 N. Kansas Ave., the Topeka Shawnee County Public Library, 1515 SW 10th Ave., and the Rita Blitt Gallery, 1700 SW Jewell on Washburn’s campus.

At 7 p.m. Friday, “The Princess Bride,” which is celebrating its 35th anniversary, will be shown at Evergy Plaza in the 600 block of downtown Topeka.

“It is perfectly situated,” said Maria Stover, professor and chair of the mass media department. “The setup is just perfect for any outdoor event. Free parking is attached right next to the venue. There’s ample seating for great angles to see the screen, free Wifi, and bathrooms as well.”

Stover said the “The Princess Bride” is a family-friendly choice for the community. The movie also has a Kansas connection as Mandy Patinkin, an actor in the movie, attended The University of Kansas, which is another great reason this movie was selected.

Mass media student, Hayden Kalp, helped provide a connection to the Evergy Plaza owner.

“I used my connection from working as a live audio engineer to get Dr. Stover in contact with the people who own Evergy,” said Kalp. “I am very excited that I had a part in that because I think Evergy will be a really cool place. We will have food trucks, it’ll be outdoors, it’s a big space, the town can get involved, and it’s right in the center of downtown. I think it could be a really cool place to hold the entire WIFI Film Festival in the future,” said Kalp.

Students in the department get hands-on experience directly contributing to the events of the festival. They assist faculty with promotion, movie selection and technical support on-site. The department’s students are encouraged to submit their own films as well.

Matthew Nyquist is the founding executive director of the WIFI Film Festival at Washburn and has a background in working with Hollywood projects and films.

Nyquist said having an event at Evergy is a huge step in the right direction.

Stover and Nyquist want to thank Ashley Gilfillan, events manager of Evergy Plaza and Rhiannon Friedman, President of Downtown Topeka and sponsor for the event, for their great partnership with the department. They have high hopes of continuing this partnership for future events.

The WIFI Film Festival feature movie at Evergy Plaza will occur rain or shine, so the community should prepare for any weather as you come out to enjoy watching “The Princess Bride.” If the weather is too dangerous for the event to continue, it will be rescheduled.

Be sure to follow the social media pages about the festival to stay up-to-date on all the activities occurring for the Wifi Film Festival.