A.A.C., New York Section. Why do people join organizations like the American Alpine Club? Certainly one of the main motives is to expand one’s circle of climbing friends and partners and to share the fellowship of like-minded people. Facilitating this objective is a primary goal of the New York Section, which it attempts to achieve with a variety of social and other events: illustrated lectures followed by a social hour; an Annual Black Tie Dinner featuring a celebrity speaker and where new members are individually introduced and presented with their membership pins; weekend outings—both spring and now winter—in the Adirondacks; and finally our very own film festival— Alpinfilm—which, in only its third year, now attracts leading filmmakers from all over the world competing for cash prizes and important exposure in the world’s media capital. The Section also attempts to do some good: contributing the net proceeds from the programs and dinners to various climbing-related causes.
The 1992 Annual Dinner featured Rick Ridgeway as special guest speaker discussing “Adventure Capitalism,” or the art of adventuring all over the world on someone else’s money. Rick, ever the consummate after-dinner speaker, was introduced by new member, Tom Brokaw, who had the audience in stitches describing various misadventures in the Tetons with Rick and Yvon Chouinard.
A progress report on an unprecedented attempt to solo the Seven Summits was also presented by Robert Anderson. At the time of the Dinner, “only” Vinson and Everest remained on Bob’s list. Finally, Fred Selby gave a short presentation on a recent attempt by a group of New Yorkers on an unclimbed 9000-foot peak in Bhutan, thus rounding out the evening’s program. Proceeds from the year’s Dinner were once again earmarked for the American Alpine Journal Publishing Fund.
Alpinfilm ’92, held in March, attracted a sell-out audience of knowledgeable and opinionated film buffs. A jury consisting of representatives from Outside
Magazine, Rolex and Paragon Sporting Goods, as well as the American Alpine Club, awarded the Grand Prize to “Shadow Hunters,” a French documentary by Alain Majani on swallow’s nest hunters in Thailand. To no one’s surprise, this film was later nominated for an Academy Award. A close second was “Sheer Courage,” an inspiring National Geographic documentary on the physical and spiritual comeback of Hugh Herr following a devastating accident on Mount Washington. Hugh’s simple yet eloquent comments on the experience drew a standing ovation. The Award for Outstanding Cinematography went to “Pacha- mama,” a snow-boarding adventure in the Andes by Patrice Aubertel. Proceeds from the festival were contributed to help fund the equipment needs of the Adirondack Volunteer Technical Rescue Team of Lake Placid.
The New York Section now numbers over 300 active members, an increase of over 15% from a year ago. Members from other Sections desiring to be on our mailing list or filmmakers interested in submitting their work to Alpinfilm, should write to us at: P.O. Box 5475, Rockefeller Station, New York, N.Y. 10185.
Philip Erard, Chairman