Last night over 2000 Washingtonians and I had the privilege of attending a presentation at Benaroya Hall in Seattle. The presentation, hosted by KCTS 9, was an splendid evening with Ken Burns and Dayton Duncan who discussed and presented clips from their upcoming epic documentary The National Parks, America's Best Idea. I knew that Burns made wonderful films, but after listening to him speak and gaining a smidgeon of insight on his world view, I am further impressed. Ken is truly a visionary, not just in the media of film, but in humanity, and as he said last night, these documentaries are ultimately about us. He confessed that he has been telling the same story about us over and over again, just with different packaging.
I must tell you that I left the presentation last night profoundly re-energized about the magnitude and importance of our National Park System. I will certainly carry this with me this summer as we explore Mt. Rainier National Park photographing its wonders.
The documentary is 12 hours long and airs this fall on your local public television station. The series will be available in High Definition (As Ken said, "5 times better") and is available on DVD and Blu-ray. From the 6 short excerpts that were shown last night, I plan to add this series to my collection. You can pre-order The National Parks, America's Best Idea from channel9store.com and save 25% with this promotional code: NPBURNS. The offer is good until 9-15-09 and cannot be combined with other offers.
You can also hear a "Weekday" interview with Ken Burns here.
See you on The Mountain this summer.