Arts, Dining & Entertainment, Events & Activities

The search for ‘the loneliest whale’ 

A Woodstock Vermont Film Series feature documentary

Jan. 15 at 3 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. — WOODSTOCK — “The Loneliest Whale” is a cinematic quest to find the elusive creature known as the “52 Hertz Whale,” which scientists believe has spent its entire life in solitude calling out at a frequency different that of any other whale.

Courtesy Billings Farm & Museum

Identified as a whale by the marine scientist Dr. William A. Watkins, who tracked the solitary signal for a dozen years until his death in 2004, “52” had not been followed since.  No one knew whether the whale was even still alive. Equipped with sophisticated sonar equipment and accompanied by a cohort of scientists, director Joshua Zeman led the expedition to find “52.”

“The Loneliest Whale” is a nature mystery, an unanswered question that needs to be solved and a chronicle of Zeman’s seemingly impossible journey to find his Moby Dick. With a little data and a whole lot of hope, Zeman set sail for the Channel Islands off California with a team of oceanographers and biologists in tow, using Navy sonar equipment, drone cameras and tracking tags to try and find “52.”

Over two showings on Saturday, Jan.15, at 3 p.m. and 5:30 p.m.in the Billings Farm & Museum Theater,”The Loneliest Whale” will take viewers on an engrossing journey, audiences will explore what this whale’s lonely plight can teach us, not just about our changing relationship to the oceans, but to each other.

This season, the 12th annual Woodstock Vermont Film Series will present a selection of 10 diverse films reflecting Billings Farm & Museum’s vision to share place-based stories of people near and far, to engage our audiences, and to inspire conversations that increase connections with each other and our world. The Woodstock Vermont Film Series is curated and directed by award-winning filmmaker Jay Craven and produced by the Billings Farm & Museum, with generous support from local sponsors.

In reopening the Billings Farm & Museum Theater to the film series, the health and safety of guests is a top priority. The theater has been upgraded with a MERV 13 filtration system, a hospital level standard for air filtration that is more effective in capturing small airborne particles. Film attendees are required to wear masks in the theater at all times and to show proof of vaccination to enter.

Reservations are strongly recommended as seating is limited. Purchase advance tickets online at billingsfarm.org/filmseries or reserve by phone at 802-457-5303 by noon on Jan. 14. Tickets may be available for purchase at the ticket desk on the day of the film if seating allows.

Masks and proof of vaccination are required to attend. We recommend providing proof of vaccination online in advance to avoid lines. Find the form at billingsfarm.org/proof-of-vaccination-form.

For a complete list of screenings and to purchase tickets visit billingsfarm.org/filmseries.

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