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The Greenhorns: Do Something Reel Film Festival

Do Something ReelLast year we proudly launched the Do Something Reel Film Festival, an online collection of provocative, character-driven films that focus on food, environmental issues and everyday people with a vision of making a world of difference. Simply put, it’s a celebration of people who understand that small steps can create big change. The Do Something Reel Film Festival continues this month with The Greenhorns, which explores the burgeoning movement of America’s young farming community – its spirit, practices and needs.

“We’re making a film about young farmers - their struggle, their valor, the redemptive force that they have for our society, for our culture, for our agriculture, for our countryside, for our nation.”


A new farmers’ movement has emerged and it’s composed of young, scrappy, resourceful and adaptive Americans, who are staking a claim in changing the food system for the better. The Greenhorns is their story. These protagonists of America’s agricultural revival face tremendous structural obstacles as they seek access to land, capital, education, business training, cultural support and open-minded consumers necessary for medium-scale agriculture. Where these components are missing, the farmers improvise and invent new institutions to serve their needs and a new marketplace.

By amplifying the voices, spirits and needs of these new farmers, as well as leaders in food and sustainable farming such as Michael Pollan and Eric Schlosser, the makers of The Greenhorns documentary film aim to entice and embolden, recruit and connect the many who crave to serve their country food. For a taste, take a look at the film’s trailer.

Filmmaker Severine von Tscharner Fleming is a farmer, activist and organizer from Cambridge, Mass. When not on the road at screenings, young farmer events or shoots for her new webseries, Severine directs the grassroots organization Greenhorns, a grassroots non-profit born from the film, and coordinates community events, skills workshops and media projects for the benefit of young farmers. She also raises pigs, goslings, chickens, rabbits and herbs on the borrowed bits of land that comprise her farm, Smithereen.


Visit the festival’s web site to rent The Greenhorns through Amazon Prime and Amazon Instant Video.

A new film will be launched online each month on the platforms listed above. They are available for rental for $3.99 in standard definition and $4.99 in high definition and include exclusive interviews with the filmmakers. There is one viewing per purchase. Visit Do Something Reel’s web site for additional video, behind-the-scenes talks with filmmakers and other materials free of charge. Plus, stay tuned for Bonsai People next month.

What’s your ideal food system? What would be different and what would remain the same?

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marmaladesky says …

I'd love to see mentorship programs that bring kids (especially city kids) to farms to learn about farming and participate it daily activities. Maybe give them school credit for it if they're in high school or college. Keep the tradition cycling through the generations so they grow up truly appreciating farming and where our food comes from. ps...the correct link is http://dosomethingreel.org/

Jane Day says …

Is it too late to apply for a grant for a film? We have already aquired footage but need funding to complete the editing? I tried to log onto your website but seem to be shut out.

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@MARMALADESKY - Thanks for catching the .org link. That is actually an older site that we have now redirected to the .com site. Thanks!

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@JANE - If you go to http://www.dosomethingreel.com/apply-for-a-filmmaking-grant/ it states that the grants for 2012 are currently closed. Stay tuned to their website as they will post if there are future application dates for 2013.

Paula says …

If you enjoy The Greenhorns film or seek to learn more from the voices of the beginning farmer movement, we have The Greenhorns book! It's a collection of stories and essays from beginning farmers across the country - experiences in the field from a wide range of angles, both practical and inspirational. Funny and sad, serious and light-hearted, these essays touch on everything from financing and machinery to family, community building, and social change. http://www.storey.com/book_detail.php?isbn=9781603427722&cat=Animals

Frances Tacy says …

What a beautiful account of the farming movement! We live in Asheville, NC and are in the process of building out 18.5 acres we recently purchased. We had a real, authentic "Barn Raising" where over 150 people came out on a 2 week notice to help us erect the timber framing for our barn which also serves as our house (on the second story). We are making huge progress with prepping garden beds, building a new chicken coop & bee garden, fencing as well as building the barn/house structure with the help of family and friends. It is astoundingly beautiful to be so supported by a community that believes in the small farm operation. We would love to share our farm and our story with everyone.

Frances Tacy says …

I forgot to mention that we are documenting the farm build out process on FB and our website www.frannysfarm.com. We have an inspirational 5 minute clip from the Barn Raising on our website. It will make you smile and give you a lump in your throat at the same time.

Amber says …

I'm not sure if I am connecting to the wrong link, but when I try to access the page to rent the film, I get a page that says Directory Has No Index. Is the site active currently? I saw it was tweeted again, but I still get an error page when I try to access it.

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@AMBER - Sorry about the technical difficulties you are having. I clicked on all of the links above and was able to get connected to the DSR page where you can purchase the film. The direct link is http://www.dosomethingreel.com/index.php. Have you tried opening the link in a difference browser?

Mari Jyvasjarvi says …

I can't get the link to work to watch "Greenhorns." I get a message "Directory has no index file." Suggestions? Thanks!

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@MARI - Were you trying to rent the movie through Amazon? If so, you can rent it at http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00BFXYYLW. If not, can you send me the link that you are trying to access as I can't seem to recreate the " Directory has no index" error.

Aimee says …

My ideal food system would be one based on permaculture rather than the much more common traditional way of ripping up the soil every year just to plant monocultures that often aren't suited to the environment and require fertilizers and pesticides. I'd love it if everything was as local as possible, with only things like tropical fruits being imported because they can't be grown locally. I'd also love a huge reduction in the food waste that currently occurs. I'm glad younger farmers are looking to improve the agricultural system. We certainly need it!

Amber says …

@Nikki, I still get the error message while in Firefox or Safari. However, I was able to link up to it using the amazon site link you provided to rent it. Thanks so much! I have been eager to watch this.