Equinox Documentaries Blog

documentary films which inspire a sense of "place" through stories and images

Carr Film Presented at Black Bear Fest on March 28

Filed under: Carr Cabin,Latest Updates — Bill at 7:19 pm on Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Join Equinox co-founders Bill Belleville & Bob Giguere as they present a new 12 minute film about the “Carr cabin in the Scrub” and answer questions about its production at the Tenth Annual Black Bear Festival in Umatilla, Fla. on March 28, this Saturday.

Screenings will be held at 9:30 am, 12:30 pm, and 3 pm in the “Presentation Tent”. Bill & Bob will provide background on the film at each presentation, and be also be available between those screenings at a special table set up to promote the work of the newly-formed “Friends of the Carr Cabin.”

Oil of the cabin by Eleanor Blair

The Festival is intended to raise awareness about the massive Ocala National Forest, its habitats and wildlife. The film celebrates the original construction in 1938 of the “Cracker ” style cabin, and explains its value to the Archie Carr family in helping to better understand Florida’s diverse ecological systems. Umatilla is on HW 19 just south of the Forest. The Fest is free.

Equinox has donated its professional services, including writing and production time for the film because of the urgency for restoration, and the opportunity to partner with like-minded agencies and non-profits. That includes the Umatilla Historical Society, the USFS, and those individuals who have donated time, money or products to the effort: Dr. Ray Willis of the USFS, the Carr family, and Gainesville artist Eleanor Blair, among others. The cabin is sited on 46 acres of scrub and pine flatwoods recently donated to the Ocala National Forest by Dr. Tom Carr, Archie’s surviving brother. The film, in DVD form, will be used for future fund raising, for educational outreach, and as a premium for large donors to the “Friends”. It will also be entered in the “shorts” competition of film festivals in Florida and around the country.

For more information, visit http://umatillachamber.org/BlackBearFest/index.htm or call 352-669-3511.
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Equinox Begins Work on Film to Remember the “Carr cabin” in the Scrub

Filed under: Carr Cabin,Latest Updates — Bill at 8:55 pm on Friday, August 22, 2008

Equinox producers Bob Giguere and Bill Belleville have started work on a short film to celebrate a “Cracker” style cabin in the Ocala National Forest used extensively by renown Florida naturalist Archie Carr and his family. Videotaped oral history with some of the Carrs is helping provide valuable insight into the subject.

The cabin and 46 acres of land on Lake Nicotoon were donated to the U.S. Forest Service two years ago by Archie’s surviving brother, Dr. Tom Carr, an esteemed physicist. When Tom and Archie’s family first moved to Florida in the late 1930’s so their father could become the minister of a church in Umatilla, they built the little cabin in the “scrub” with the help of a local Cracker carpenter.
As a backwoods retreat, the cabin provided a full immersion experience in the new Florida landscape for family and distinguished friends like Thomas Barbour. When Archie, a lyrical and accomplished writer, sold his very first essay (“Hound Magic”) to Field & Stream, he used the proceeds to screen in the cabin porch. The story itself told of hunting in the nearby Forest. Archie’s dad also built small wooden boats for rowing and fishing out on the one-square mile lake.

Today, Archie and his wife Marjorie are fondly remembered for the courageous work they accomplished in Florida and throughout the Tropics, Archie with sea turtles and Marjorie with the Barge Canal. In this way, the cabin is more than a tin-roofed shack—it’s iconic in what it means to all of us who have been inspired by the work of the Carrs and their children today. In his books, Archie not only helps us understand “conservation biology”, he does so with a humor and grace that makes us eager to learn. Reading “Windward Road” or “A Naturalist in Florida” is like chatting with an old friend who is also a keen observer, a wise scientist, and a great Southern storyteller.

Thanks to Ray Willis, archaeologist with the U.S.F.S., for his tenacious caring in alerting us to the need to “save” the cabin, to the generous input from Tom, Chuck and Steve Carr, and to Equinox Board member David Strickland who offered to support the film. It is our great hope the film can be used to raise funding for restoration and interpretation to help the public appreciate both the vernacular wisdom and the abiding spirit of the place.