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Sterling Nature Center Documentary

Students involved in creating a documentary for Sterling Nature Center interview Charlie Itzin (center, seated), a member of Friends of Sterling Nature Center and a longtime SUNY Oswego faculty member. Shown filming Itzin from left are Lauren Smith, Wells Liscomb and (adjusting camera at right of frame) Ryan King.

This past summer, the Sterling Nature Center saw something genuinely unique unfold. Laura Donnelly, the Director of Creative Writing at SUNY Oswego and a valued member of the Friends of Sterling Nature Center’s Board of Directors, joined forces with Cinema and Screen Studies Professors Jarrod Hagadron and Tiffany Deater. Together, they secured a grant from the Shineman Endowed Fund, which specifically supports collaborative creative projects involving SUNY Oswego faculty and students. Their mission? To craft a compelling short documentary film that delves into the Sterling Nature Center's biodiversity and rich community history. Even as the center undergoes current site improvements, it's vital to preserve and remember the site's storied past and the journey that brought it to this point.
The student team responsible for filming this project consists of Ryan King, Lauren Smith, and Wells Liscomb. They embarked on a remarkable journey, conducting interviews with carefully chosen community members, dedicated staff, and committed Friends of Sterling Nature Center. Additionally, they diligently captured the beauty of the local wildlife and the scenic vistas that grace the Sterling Nature Center. To enhance their documentary, they'll be making use of videos of Sterling Nature Center wildlife taken by  Naturalist and Center Director Jim D'Angelo over the years.
Their efforts were not without challenges; they confronted unpredictable weather conditions, including rain, thunderstorms, and scorching heat. To make things even more interesting, they faced a power outage on their very first day of filming. Undaunted, they persevered through the clamor of construction noise and the haze of smoke from the Canadian wildfires. We eagerly anticipate the final product of their hard work and dedication, and we will certainly keep you informed about its release.

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