Celebrating Pride Month, Mama Bears screens at SJI Library on June 14

Submitted by the Friday Harbor Film Festival

Did you know there are more than 32,000 mothers in America — many from conservative, Christian backgrounds — who fully accept their LGBTQ+ children? They call one another “mama bears” because of the ferocity with which they fight for their children’s rights. A heart-warming documentary about them will be shown at 7 p.m. on Friday, June 14 at the San Juan Island Library. It will be followed by a livestream Q&A about the film with Director Daresha Kyl. Details are available at fhff.org. This event is FREE and open to the public. No tickets or reservations are needed.

Mama Bears

Winner of the 2023 Friday Harbor Film Festival’s Audience Choice Tales from the Heart Award, Mama Bears is an intimate, thought-provoking exploration of the journeys taken by Sara Cunningham and Kimberly Shappley, two “mama bears” whose profound love for their LGBTQ children has turned them into fierce advocates for the entire queer community, and Tammi Terrell Morris, a young African American lesbian whose struggle for self-acceptance perfectly exemplifies why the mama bears are so vitally important.

Spread across the country but connected through private Facebook groups, they also call themselves “mama bears” because while their love is warm and fuzzy, but they fight ferociously to make the world kinder and safer for all LGBTQ+ people. Although some may have grown up as fundamentalist, evangelical Christians, mama bears are willing to risk losing friends, family, and faith communities to keep their offspring safe—even if it challenges their belief systems and rips their worlds apart.

The Best of the Fest Series

Each month through September Best of the Fest will offer award-winning documentaries along with livestream Q&As. Programs will begin at 7 p.m. Some are in collaboration with the San Juan Island Library; others are at the San Juan Island Grange. Since they’re on Fridays, they are a great “date night” activity.

Here’s the schedule:

Mama Bears – June 14 at the Library

Patrick and the Whale – July 12 at the Library

Covenant of the Salmon People and Our Sacred Obligation – Aug. 9 at the Library

Common Ground – Sept. 13 at the Grange

Details about the films in the series are available on the fhff.org website. Mark your calendar and plan to view the exceptional Best of the Fest documentaries.

2024 Friday Harbor Film Festival

Mark your calendar for October 24-27 in-theatre and October 28- November 3 on-demand to view this year’s selection of excellent documentaries, thematic blocks of short films, and Young Filmmakers Showcase entries. Plan now to attend!

Thank you to our 2024 Best of the Fest Sponsors!

Presenting Sponsor: SaviBank

Media Sponsor: Cascade Public Media | KCTS9