Attend the Rainier Independent Film Festival | Visit Rainier

Attend the Rainier Independent Film Festival

The Rainier Independent Film Festival (May 17th – 19th) will soon announce its official line-up of 45+ dynamic films spanning a variety of genres and topics.

The 13th Annual Rainier Independent Film Festival is excited to announce the Opening Night film, Return to Mount Kennedy. In 1965 Jim Whittaker led Senator Robert Kennedy to the first ascent of a remote mountain in the Yukon named after the late president, JFK. Fifty years later, the sons of the original climbing team—a raucous band manager, a candidate for governor, and a young mountaineer—embark on an expedition to the mountain to celebrate the special bond that connects them all. Featuring unreleased instrumentals by Eddie Vedder and never before seen footage and photos of Robert Kennedy, the feature-length documentary sits at the intersection of politics, human rights, environmentalism, and adventure.
This beautiful film is about family, friendship, loss, and discovery…it’s raw, real and inspirational. Bobby Whittaker will be joining us for a Q & A after the film.
The RIFF Opening Night Film and Gala is a magical experience. As filmmakers arrive, the town of Ashford begins to buzz. The tranquil mountain and the lush surrounding forest seem more alive than ever. The Lion’s Hall, artfully dressed in nature, is where we gather to celebrate independent film and the filmmakers that put their heart and soul into creating something beautiful, thought-provoking, educational and ultimately entertaining. The creative charge continues as filmmakers new and returning, community members, and avid film buffs share food, spirits, and conversation at the Opening Night Gala. You won’t want to miss this year’s line-up or the enchantment of what will be RIFF 2019.
We are excited to see the return and expansion of The Student Movie RIFF (TSMR), now in its third year. Students in grades 9 through 12 of the Eatonville, Morton, Yelm, Mineral, Orting, and Bethel school districts, sign up in teams to make a film five minutes or less. Students are given a prompt, have free creative reign and three weeks to complete and upload their work. The top 10 student films will be screened on Saturday morning at 10:00 AM, May 18th, in the Lions’ Theater. First place prize is a scholarship in the amount of $1441.10, a tribute to the elevation of Mt. Rainier.

The RIFF program guide will list a complete movie line-up and announce the filmmakers that will be in attendance. 

For movie or workshop tickets, go online to or in person at Whittaker’s Bunkhouse in Ashford, Washington.



About Rainier Independent Film Festival

The Rainier Independent Film Festival is dedicated to providing true Independent Filmmakers a venue to have their films screened in the tranquil area surrounding Mount Rainier. Mixing films, workshops and the laid-back setting of the area, this festival is set apart in the fact that it is a great opportunity to meet and mingle with film industry people outside of the hustle and bustle typically associated with the business.

Located in the shadow of Mount Rainier, the Ashford Valley provides the perfect setting for this festival. Our screening venues include the Mt. Rainier Lions Theater and the Cine-Yurt at Wellspring. All projection is shown in the latest digital technology.

RIFF Lodging Specials

Enjoy an unforgettable weekend at RIFF 2019, and escape to majestic Mt. Rainier to create memories of a lifetime. Click here for package details.