Sundance navigation, explained by insiders |

Sundance navigation, explained by insiders


Tuesday is a chance to learn how to navigate the Sundance Film Festival, before the crowds arrive later in the month for the annual extravaganza.

The Kimball Art Center, as part of its Art Talk series, is scheduled to host three high-ranking staffers from the Sundance Institute for a discussion about the upcoming festival.

The Sundance representatives are expected to address a diverse set of topics. The event is free and open to the public. It is scheduled to start at 6 p.m. and last at least one hour. The Sundance staffers will deliver a presentation and take questions from the audience.

The Sundance representatives scheduled to appear are:

  • Sarah Pearce, a co-managing director of the Sundance Institute
  • Laurie Hopkins, the Sundance Institute’s other co-managing director
  • Sarah West, the director of Utah community development

    Pearce’s role over the years has been especially critical to the functioning of the festival. She had directed the operations until her promotion in 2012 to the co-managing director position.

    The event at the Kimball Art Center is scheduled nine days before the Jan. 17 opening of the festival. A flier announcing the Art Talk indicates the Sundance staffers will talk about some topics that festival-goers deal with annually. The flier refers to Sundance as "one of the top three film festivals in the world."

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    One of the topics that the Sundance staffers anticipate addressing is ways for people to obtain screening tickets. The difficulty of scoring Sundance tickets, particularly prized ones for premieres, has long been among the chief complaints about the festival.

    It is likely the Sundance staffers will outline the various options people have as they try to get tickets during the festival itself. Sundance traditionally says people without tickets to screenings have several opportunities to get them once the festival starts. They say that blocs of tickets go on sale each day and they point people to the time-honored wait-list lines outside of the screenings.

    Meanwhile, it seems, they could talk about the free buses as they address navigating the festival. Sundance-goers are encouraged to use the buses. There is a bus route operating during Sundance that stops at festival sites like theaters in addition to the City Hall bus lines.

    Sundance is typically among the busiest stretches of the year in Park City, with the opening weekend being especially jammed. Some of the year’s worst traffic is during Sundance and parking in the Main Street core is difficult, leading officials to heavily promote the bus system.

    Both Sundance and City Hall typically offer suggestions about navigating the festival. The municipal government, as an example, has traditionally recommended people take alternate routes when heading to Main Street, such as using Deer Valley Drive and Marsac Avenue instead of Park Avenue. City Hall also encourages people needing to go to the Main Street post office to do so by 1 p.m.

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