On a Budget? 5 Ways to Experience BIFF for Free


The esteemed Boulder International Film Festival may have a big reputation and draw Hollywood stars, but it’s open to anyone, even if you’re on a tight budget of approximately $0. 

There’s plenty of free fun offered through BIFF every year. Here are five of our favorite ways to enjoy BIFF on a budget.

1. BIFF Sponsor Happy Hours

Enjoy free food and drinks with a BIFF ticket stub or pass in the BIFF Filmmaker Lounge. You can find parties throughout the festival. For 2020, for example, there’s a party 9 p.m-midnight Saturday night with free drinks and food for BIFF attendees.

Also don’t miss Wendy Woo performing 10 p.m.-midnight Friday, March 6; free entrance for all.

2. BIFF Singer-Songwriter Showcase

Hear live tunes from singer-songwriters chosen from more than 1,500 entries. This event is also at the Post Brewing Co. It’s free and open to the public, even late night. Check the . music page in the program for the singer-songwriter schedule and details.

For 2020, the showcase is Thursday, March 5, and Saturday, March 7, in the evenings.

3. The BIFF Youth Pavilion

BIFF’s youth offerings are among its best freebies. Head to the Boulder Public Library (enter through the north door) for free programming for kids and teens. Find totally free short films, workshops, speakers, and feature screenings. Don’t miss the opening night party.

4. The XR Experience

Experience the future of movies and storytelling in the free XR Experience. You can slip on a VR headset and watch, er, experience your choice from a selection of short films.

Get virtual at Galvanize, 1023 Walnut St.

5. Talkback Cafe

Participate in a post-film discussion of select films in the Talkback Cafe, located in the BIFF tent on Pearl Street Mall at 14th Street. The chat is free, and so are the refreshments. In the past, you could enjoy coffee from the Trident Cafe, tea from Celestial Seasonings and snacks from Shamane’s Bakeshop.

For 2020, the events are centered around music: live music and a music panel (no talkbacks, despite the name of the tent). See the the music page in the BIFF program for more info.

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