The Resch Family Fund’s “You’ve Got Friends” 40 Fundraising Champions Challenge

COUNTDOWN TO THE GREAT GIVE® MARATHON!

While advance giving began on April 6, the heart of The Great Give® begins in earnest this Tuesday, May 5, at 8 AM. The 36-hour online fundraising marathon—coordinated by the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven to support hundreds of area non-profits—continues through Wednesday, May 6, at 8 PM.

The Great Give® is Best Video Film & Cultural Center’s most important fundraiser of the year and, with the loss of income due to our temporary, pandemic-mandated closure, it take on even more importance in 2020.

What are some ways you can maximize the impact of your best gift to BVFCC in The Great Give®?

ACCEPT THE RESCH FAMILY FUND CHALLENGE TO BE A “FUNDRAISING CHAMPION” FOR BEST VIDEO!

The Resch Family will make a matching donation of $2,000 if 40 (or more) Fundraising Champions each raise $200 before 8pm on Wednesday May 6th. Reaching that goal enhances our chances of winning up to $5,000 in additional prize money for Best Video. Are you up for the challenge?

Become a Fundraising Champion by clicking the “Fundraising” button (see photo) on the Best Video Film and Cultural Center Great Give page or make a donation via a BVFCC Fundraising Champion who you know.

If becoming a fundraiser is a stretch for you or outside your comfort zone, there is another way you can raise the impact of any donation you might make—by going through the list of “fundraising champions” on the right side of our Great Give® page and donating through the page of one who hasn’t yet reached the $200 benchmark.

ARE YOU AN EARLY BIRD?

GENEROUS DONORS ARE CONTRIBUTING MATCHING FUNDS UP TO $500 IF YOU DONATE BETWEEN 8 and 9 AM ON MAY 5 & 6!

Want to make your donation go even farther? Of course you do!

Make your donation through one of our “Fundraising Champions” (see information above) between 8 and 9 AM on Tuesday, May 5, or Wednesday, May 6. The more donations we get during those time frames, the better our chance of winning an additional $1,000 prize.

The Rabbi Herb & Elin Brockman May 5 Early Bird Match Challenge:

Best Video Film & Cultural Center is the appreciative beneficiary of a $500 match from Rabbi Herb and Elin Brockman. The Brockmans will match up to $50 of every donation up to $500 for the hour of 8-9 AM on May 5. Make your donation dollars go farther by donating during the Early Bird time frame on May 5th!

The May 6 Early Bird Match Challenge:

Best Video Film & Cultural Center is the appreciative beneficiary of a $500 match from an anonymous donor. The donor will match up to $50 of every donation up to $500 for the hour of 8-9 AM on May 6. Make your donation dollars go farther by donating during the Early Bird time frame on May 6th!

Support Best Video in The Great Give, May 5-6; advance giving has already begun!

Can you pledge to donate? Email us to let us know—details below!

The Great Give®—an annual 36-hour online fundraising marathon coordinated by the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven in the first week of May—is Best Video Film & Cultural Center’s most important fundraiser. Given the ongoing expenses we are incurring (rent, utilities, insurance, etc.) while having much of our daily income stream cut off, The Great Give® is more important than ever this year.

• GREAT GIVE RUNS MAY 5-6 BUT ADVANCE GIVING HAS ALREADY BEGUN

The Great Give® runs from May 5-May 6, 2020 from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.. Advance giving for The Great Give® began April 6, 2020. We recognize times are difficult for many people—your best gift can to help us continue to bring film, music, and people together.

We need your help! Please join our campaign and help us raise the money necessary to continue—and expand—our programming and preserve—and expand!—our incredible film archive! We need you to tell your friends and family members about the value we have for the community and ask them to join us in helping to make a difference.

• CAN YOU PLEDGE TO GIVE?

Our intention—before we had to temporarily close our premises—had been to collect names, email address, and cell numbers on a pledge sign-up sheet so we could text supporters when the event was under way. If you want to pledge to donate—you needn’t say how much although it does have to be $5 or more—you can email us your info at info [AT] bestvideo.com. Put “pledge” in the subject line.

• HELP US AS A PEER-TO-PEER FUNDRAISER

Donating is great! But if you want to help us even more, become one of our fundraisers and let your friends and family know how important you feel Best Video is to you and the community. The more fundraisers we have, the better our chance of winning additional thousands of dollars in prize money.

Just go to our Great Give® page and click the “Fundraise” button right next to the “Donate” button. It will ask for your name, email address, and to create a password. When you press “Submit,” you have created YOUR page, which you can share on social media and emails.

It’s fun! It’s competitive! Rally your friends and family to support a local cultural icon.

Although it isn’t necessary, you can customize your page by clicking on “Toolkit” on your fundraiser page. At the top of your “Toolkit” is an option to “Tell your story.” Opening that allows you to put in a picture of yourself, personalize the text on your fundraising page, and put in an image that relates to the reasons why you support Best Video. (If you need help customizing your page, contact us at info [AT] bestvideo.com.)

Join us at the virtual video counter with our series “A Favorite Movie”: Best Video staff & friends make recommendations

One of the great things about Best Video Film & Cultural Center is exchanging recommendations about movies. While BVFCC is temporarily closed to support social distancing during the pandemic, we decided to solicit movie recommendations from staff and friends.

The premise of the series is “A Favorite Movie,” not necessarily “The” favorite movie of contributors. Members, friends, and supporters of Best Video Film & Cultural Center talk about movies they like—and why they like them.

Here are the contributions to date, starting with Best Video founder and original owner Hank Paper, talking about the Argentinian film “The Last Suit”:

Here’s composer and singer Brian Robinson talking up his un-ironic affection for “Hudson Hawk”:

Neal Damiano likes “Valley Girl,” featuring Nicolas Cage’s first starring role:

Best Video staffer Mike Wheatley recommends “Galaxy Quest” as both a great comedy and great sci-fi film for the family:

New Haven Independent arts editor and musician Brian Slattery hymns the virtues of Spanish director Julio Medem’s “Lovers of the Arctic Circle”:

Documentary filmmaker, musician, and DJ contributes with a paean to Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s “Ali: Fear Eats the Soul”:

BVFCC member Kevin Munley and his son Yan Patrick have a special place in their heart for Star Wars Episode V aka “The Empire Strikes Back”:

Storyteller, writer, screenwriter, and educator Saul Fussiner praises “Bottle Rocket,” director Wes Anderson’s feature debut:

BVFCC member and Institute Library Operations Manager Eva Geertz picks a Coen Brothers dark horse, “Intolerable Cruelty,” for her choice:

Writer, musician, and pie-maker Val McKee offers up an appreciation of the 1985 film “Fandango”:

Update on COVID-19 impacts on Best Video: cafe goes to takeout only, closing time at 6 PM

Dear members and friends,

Pursuant to Gov. Ned Lamont’s order, the Best Video Film & Cultural Center’s cafe will be moving to takeout only for the foreseeable future.

I have consulted with the Quinnipiac Valley Health District and this plan is consistent with Gov. Lamont’s directive.

The plan now is to continue receiving deliveries of pastries from Bread & Chocolate and donuts and bagels from Whitney Donut. You can come in and pick up specialty coffee drinks and baked goods but, unfortunately, not stick around for hearty conversation. There is a hand sanitizer dispenser at the entrance and we are regularly cleaning all touchable surfaces with disinfectant cleaners and wipes.

We are also closing earlier, at 6 PM rather than the previously announced 7 PM. We have had quite a few people express gratitude at being able to get movies to keep themselves occupied in these times. And we are moved at the expressions of support and donations we have received.

We do STRONGLY encourage folks—particularly if you have one of the monthly or annual 1-Movie, 2-Movie, or 4-Movie Plans—to call ahead and tell us what you would like to rent. That way we can have them checked out and ready to hand off to you when you get here. Additionally, to reduce the number of times you need to go out, you can rent an additional movie at no extra charge if you have the 1- or 2-Movie Plans.

Of course, if circumstances change, we will keep everyone posted.

We wish all of our friends and neighbors good health in these difficult times.

Sincerely,
Hank Hoffman
Executive Director
& Staff and Board of Directors of Best Video Film & Cultural Center

A message from Best Video on cancellations and revised hours due to COVID-19 virus

Dear members and friends,

Due to COVID-19, Best Video Film & Cultural Center will be suspending events through the end of March. (The status of currently scheduled programming beyond March will be reevaluated as required by circumstances.) We are taking direction from the recommendations of the town and civil authorities and acting in the interests of caution. As others are, we will continue monitoring the information coming from the CDC and knowledgeable public health experts.

Considerations for the health and welfare of our members, staff, and performers are paramount.

Our cafe and video rental archive will remain open. But, in addition to suspending events, we are temporarily scaling back our hours on the video side of our organization. Our cafe will continue to be open from 7 AM-7 PM Monday through Friday and 8 AM-7 PM on Saturdays and Sundays. On the video side, we will open as usual at 9 AM but close—starting today, Mar. 12—at 7 PM each night.

During this time when all of us will be following recommendations to avoid large public gatherings, access to our amazing archive of movies could be a source of diversion and pleasure. As a benefit to members, we are initiating a special for the month of March: If you have a 1-Movie monthly or annual plan, you may take out two movies at no extra charge through March.

Additionally, for members with the 1-, 2-, or 4-movie plans, we will expand our service for your convenience. If you call ahead with a request, we’ll grab your movies for you and hand them to you at the door when you get here.

This is a challenging and, yes, frightening time for many of us. We wish all good health and hope for the best.

Sincerely,

Hank Hoffman
Executive Director
Best Video Film & Cultural Center
& The staff and Board of Directors of BVFCC

Save the dates! The Great Give® May 1-2, The Great Give® Happy Hours Apr. 24 & May 1

You can start giving now!

Have you dreamed of making history? Of course, we all have. And now we have a chance to be a part of greater New Haven’s day of giving, The Great Give®—an opportunity to unite our community around causes in which we truly believe and help nonprofit organizations connect to the larger community.

We need your help! Please join our campaign and help us raise the money necessary to continue—and expand—our programming and preserve—and expand!—our incredible film archive! We need you to tell your friends and family members about the value we have for the community and ask them to join us in helping to make a difference.

Get ready to give!

The Great Give®, organized by the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven, runs from May 1-May 2, 2019 from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.. Advance gifts can be made for The Great Give® beginning April 19, 2019; advance gifts will count toward grand prize calculations, but will not be counted toward hourly prize incentives.

To contribute to Best Video Film & Cultural Center during The Great Give®, go to TheGreatGive.org and enter “Best Video” in the Search field to find our page. Or just click on the graphic in this post to be taken directly to our Great Give® page.

BVFCC will endeavor to stoke enthusiasm for The Great Give® with two Happy Hour events, one on Wed., Apr. 24, from 5-7 PM, and the second on the first day of The Great Give®, Wed., May 1, from 5-7 PM. Come on down to BVFCC on those days for drink specials, tasty snacks, socializing, and—if you can—your laptop or smartphone to make a Great Give® donation to support BVFCC!

Best Video hosts annual pre-Oscars brunch & celebration Sun., Feb. 24, 10:30 AM-1 PM

Movie Trivia Contest! Guess the Oscars Winner Contest! Great Prizes! Mimosas, Bagels & more!

Best Video Film & Cultural Center celebrates the Academy Awards with a pre-Oscars Brunch on Oscar Sunday, Feb. 24, from 10:30 AM-1 PM. Originally scheduled as an afternoon event with a Chili Cook-Off, it was moved to the morning to avoid any conflict with an evening Pot Luck at Spring Glen Church.

Featuring complimentary mimosas, bagels & more! Oscar Trivia Contest with Masters of Trivia Lena Olive and Scott White! A Guess the Most Correct Oscar Winners ballot contest! Prizes!

Everybody is welcome to come celebrate movie culture and community. Bring the kids!

Support for Best Video Film & Cultural Center programming is welcomed with suggested donations of $5-$25 (contribute what you’d like in that range, or more!).

Best Video hosts annual pre-Oscars Brunch & celebration Sun., Feb. 24, with trivia & Oscar contests (UPDATED 2/12/19)

UPDATE:

Because of a perceived conflict with the evening Neighborhood Soup Pot Luck Dinner at Spring Glen Church, Best Video Film & Cultural Center has moved its pre-Oscars celebration event to the morning of Sunday, Feb. 24, from 10:30 AM-1 PM. We have shelved the Chili Cook-Off for now. The Oscars Brunch features complimentary mimosas and bagels as well as the previously planned Oscars Trivia Contest presided over by Masters of Trivia Lena Olive and Scott White and Oscars ballot contest. Everybody is welcome to come and celebrate movie culture and community.

Support for Best Video Film & Cultural Center programming  is welcomed with suggested donations of $5-$25 (contribute what you’d like in that range, or more!).

The red carpet rolls out for bowls of red—chili, to those not in the know when Best Video Film & Cultural Center hosts an afternoon pre-Oscars celebration and fundraiser on Sunday, Feb. 24, from 12:30-3 PM 10:30 AM-1 PM. In the spirit of last fall’s Best Cookie Contest, we debut our “Chili Oscars Cook-Off,” a chili-making contest. Admission is $15 in advance ($20 at the door) for individuals and $25 for two adults (kids included for free).

The event will also feature a movie trivia contest with Best Video’s Master of Trivia Lena Olive and Scott White. And, as in previous years, attendees will get Oscar ballots and can compete to see who can correctly guess the most winners. There will be prizes for all the contests.

BVFCC is a nonprofit organization dedicated to bringing people, film, and music together. For more information, check bestvideo.com or call (203) 287-9286.

Support BVFCC—Give the gift of membership this season, hang out with friends at the café, get special order DVDs & Blu-Rays, gift certificates

To our members, friends and neighbors: December is upon us, the end of another year and a time for giving. We appreciate and thank all for another year of support, exciting events and relative stability. We could not have done it without your interest and participation.

This holiday season please keep us in your holiday gift-giving plans, every little bit helps. Customer activity can get a bit lean during the dead of winter so here is how you can help maintain BVFCC’s success:

• Come out for a coffee, a show, a beer or wine and meet up with a friend;

• Make your holiday special orders of movies or TV series, or both;

• Renew a soon-expiring membership;

• Purchase a gift membership for friends—for video rentals or the cultural membership plan for BVFCC music and film events, or for both;

• Buy BVFCC gift certificates, good for both the video and cafe sides of BVFCC;

• Please consider a donation as well as year end nears. Remember, we are a not-for-profit charitable cultural organization and any donation to Best Video is completely tax deductible. Your accountant will be proud of you! And we’ll be as happy as Rudolph leading the way!

We wish all a safe, happy and healthy holiday season and hope to see you at BVFCC sometime soon. And thanks again for your continued support. We’ll give it all back to you in the coming year, adding more films to our vast library, more live music, beautifying our space, and having a place for you, your families and neighbors to meet and feel the sense of community that is yours and ours. Here at Best Video Film and Cultural Center.

Schedule for Best Video Fall Open House Extravaganza & “Fun”draiser on Sat., Nov. 17, from 9 AM-9 PM

On Saturday, November 17, 2018, Best Video Film & Cultural Center (BVFCC), celebrating its third anniversary as a nonprofit, will host its Fall Open House & “Fun”draising Extravaganza—a full day of festivity, pageantry, and fun for all ages. BVFCC’s parking lot will also play host to two food trucks— The Caseus Cheese Truck from 12-2 and the Taqueria Cinco taco truck from 4-6 PM.

Everybody is welcome to come and enjoy what Best Video has to offer that day. It is our main fall fundraiser—our main spring fundraiser is the online Great Give in May—and we count on it. There is no set donation amount but we encourage all to contribute whatever they can—and/or become a Best Video Film & Cultural Center member—to keep BVFCC open and running.

There will be a table run by staff and Best Video Board members to meet you, sign up new members, renew memberships and receive donations.

The official schedule for this Saturday’s event:

9 AM-Noon: Best Video Kids’ Music & Cartoon PJ Party

9 AM • Music by Robert Messore

9:30 AM (or so) • Cartoons chosen by Best Video staffer Michael Wheatley

10 AM • Music by Val McKee

10:30 AM (or so) • Cartoons chosen by Best Video staffer Mike Wheatley

11 AM • Prizes given out to winners of our first Student Art Show and display of all the entries

11:30 AM (or so) • Cartoons chosen by Best Video staffer Mike Wheatley

Noon-2 PM • The Caseus Cheese Truck at Best Video

1-4 PM:

1-4 PM • Best Cookie Contest: Almost 20 bakers compete to see who bakes the “Best Cookie,” with two winners chosen by a poll of attendees!

1 PM • Open Mic for Kids 18 and younger

2 PM • Trivia 237: The Best Video trivia contest for all things cinema and cinema-related, hosted by Lena Olive and Paul Reese

3 PM • Music by Jazzphoria Quartet, featuring members of the Hamden High School Jazz Combo.

4-6 PM • The Taqueria Cinco food truck at Best Video

5-9 PM:

5 PM • Rob Harmon’s “Secret Cinema”

5:30 (or so) • Short Films from 48 Hour Film Project New Haven

6 PM • Open Mic for Grown-Ups

7 PM • Music by Vardo Swing

7:30 (or so) • Short Films from 48 Hour Film Project New Haven

8 PM • Music by Dust Hat

8:30 (or so): Short Films from 48 Hour Film Project New Haven