In early 2017 it was announced that the YPSI 24-Hour Shootout would take a hiatus that would let us step back and give thought on how this event could be returned with an expanded focus on supporting the digital media arts in Ypsilanti and beyond.
YPSI 24 came a long way from that first event in 2012 at which we screened 12 programs at the Riverside Arts Center in Ypsilanti. When you roll the dice on an event the first time, you don’t know if anyone will show up. But some did, and the unanimous question was “Will you do this again?”
That question would be repeated as the event grew each year to the point of having to limit the number of entries that we could screen at the awards presentation after the Shootout weekend. With the added benefit of a partnership with Washtenaw Community College, we were able to move into a larger venue to accommodate crowds at the film screening and award presentations.
We could not have produced this event, and especially been able to offer the outstanding levels of cash prizes, without a generous group of sponsors in our community. Some sponsors who have contributed significantly to the growth and success of YPSI 24 have included the Ann Arbor CVB / Ypsi REAL, Michigan Film & Digital Media Office, Tyler Weston of Real Estate One Ypsilanti, Zingerman’s Community of Businesses, and many other community sponsors who will continue to be showcased on the ypsi24.com Sponsor Archive.
Continued thanks to all of our sponsors, but I’d like to give a special shout out to two particular community boosters who jumped on this concept from the beginning and remained on board all five years with financial, promotional, and moral support for YPSI 24.
Bonnie and Ed Penet, owners of the Mix On Michigan store in downtown Ypsi responded to the idea of YPSI 24 with an immediate “What can we do to make it happen?” Ed even made the connection to Jake Grimes, a local wood artisan, who designed and crafted our badass trophy “The IPSY,” awarded to the Best of Show winner.
Another shout out goes to Dave Heikkinen, owner of Heik’s Decorated Apparel, also in downtown Ypsi. Dave is a tireless promoter of all things in downtown Ypsi and helped promote YPSI 24 in many ways including printing the snazzy shirts every year for the YPSI 24 volunteers.
Special thanks are still in order to the filmmakers who have participated in all the YPSI 24 Shootouts, and especially to the winners who consistently impress with the creativity they are able to execute in just 24 hours. The complete showcase of YPSI 24 talent remains accessible on this site and the official YPSI 24 Vimeo Channel. Thanks also go to the judges who have given their time while bringing their collective media experiences to scrutinize the submitted films and determine the prizewinners. It’s not an easy task!
YPSI 24 will continue to support independent filmmaking in Southeast Michigan through special events and social media messaging. We are part of a vibrant community of many talented filmmakers and film lovers in Michigan, and YPSI 24 will continue to seek ways through which we can help to grow and promote our community.
I feel there is more growth potential for YPSI 24, but for the event to cross that plateau, its scope must be assessed and expanded, while a new structure will be implemented that produces other media events…and both will take time to develop. Going forward the first step will be creation of YPSI 24 Media, the new umbrella for facilitating media arts events including the YPSI 24 Shootout.
Please share your thoughts about YPSI 24 via the contact form and a timely reply will follow. Watch for continued posts of interest via Facebook and Twitter. Thanks to all who have made the Shootout an event that caused many creatives in Michigan to take notice. As always, keep making films!
Mark S. Ducker
Director, The YPSI 24-Hour Film Shootout