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Locally produced “Young Hemingway” documentary moves into final production phase

PETOSKEY – Grants from five local organizations have made it possible for Contemporary Learning Systems, Inc. (CLS), a Petoskey-based nonprofit media company, to enter the final production stage for its documentary “Young Hemingway:  Finding His Muse in Northern Michigan.”  At the same time, the grants will make it possible for the company to produce a series of pilot electronic learning modules designed for use in the classroom.
The most recent grantees include the Meijer Foundation, the Michigan Hemingway Society, The Petoskey-Harbor Springs Area Community Foundation, Ciao Bella! Design, and Petoskey Plastics.

George Colburn receiving grant
George Colburn (at left) receiving a grant award of $5,000 from David Jones, Executive Director of the Petoskey – Harbor Springs Area Community Foundation.

The documentary and learning modules focus on experiences in the early life of Ernest Hemingway, during his many “summers in residence” spent in Emmet and Charlevoix counties.  Those experiences helped create one of the world’s most renowned writers.  “The learning modules will be drawn from our documentary materials on Young Hemingway and will be available for distribution via the Internet into high school and college classrooms across the country,” explains local historian, writer and documentary producer Dr. George A. Colburn.

Colburn’s documentary is a 60-minute made-for-television special, featuring commentary from many of the country’s most recognized Hemingway scholars and from local residents who keep the Hemingway “spirit” alive in this region.  The documentary project began under Dr. Colburn’s direction in the summer of 2012 when the international Ernest Hemingway Foundation and Society met in Petoskey for the first time.

“With principal photography completed, final editing will get underway this week,” Colburn said.  A special public screening of a rough edit of the special is scheduled to take place at the 2nd annual Hemingway Birthday Party held at the Perry Hotel on Hemingway’s birthday, July 21st.   For more information, or to make a reservation, call the Perry Hotel at 231-347-4000.  
Although significant financial support has come from the Meijer Corporation Foundation, the Michigan Humanities Council, the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, and the Michigan Hemingway Society, “A substantial level of support,” Colburn is quick to note, “has come from 22 local businesses and organizations.  It is gratifying to have the support of so many neighbors,” he added.

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