Funded! This project was successfully funded on February 3, 2012.

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This feature documentary speaks to a man’s passion for nature and his marriage to the earth.

The Sanctity of Sanctuary: Paul Strauss and the Equinox Farm

 Though it won't earn you a degree, a life centered on the earth is most rewarding, giving you the opportunity to view the interconnection of all things and the dancing circles of life and death — to be endlessly humbled, amazed, and confused as you reap what you sow. Paul Strauss 

Meigs County, Ohio, in the foothills of Appalachia, is the home of renowned herbalist Paul Strauss. Paul has rehabilitated land left bare by strip mines and has helped to create the United Plant Savers Sanctuary to preserve endangered medicinal plants. He is visited by herbalists from all over the world and holds classes on his 300-acre organic farm. Paul’s vision and transformational leadership have attracted like-minded people to purchase land in the area. These tracts of farms are joined together by a community walking trail that has turned into an eco-tourist destination called “The Talking Forest Medicine Trail.” 

Paul is a charismatic person with wonderful stories to tell and has been referred to as a walking encyclopedia of plants. This feature documentary speaks to a man’s passion for nature and his marriage to the earth. This film is an igniting of the green spark and a call to living a sustainable life! 

Your Contribution

Your contribution will pay for post-production costs needed to bring this 90-minute feature film to life. Using kickstarter, I receive the funding only if the funding goals are met so it is important that we reach or exceed the goal. This project has been self-funded, with additional research funds from Xavier University. The project is 90% shot, with a few simple short interviews and pick-up shots left to acquire. In the spirit of the project, many of the rewards are designed to be green, or paperless. If you care about the planet and are interested in spreading the word of sustainability, please help support this film. 

The Costs involved:

  • editing
  • score
  • graphics creation
  • music licenses
  • color correction
  • sound mix
  • additional interviews
  • website
  • stock footage
  • DVD/Blu-ray design
  • film festival applications
  • closed captioning
  • and all your rewards!

Expanded Narrative

Rutland, Ohio, would seem an unlikely place for someone born in the heart of New York City, but at nineteen, disenchanted with consumerism, the Vietnam War, and a year of college, Paul Strauss left NYC to travel out west and landed in Taos, New Mexico. While in Taos, Paul was adopted by a Native American family and learned the value that a life connected to nature could provide. After hitching his way out of Taos, Paul stopped to help two men change a flat tire, and that fortuitous meeting set his path in life. Paul joined the two men headed for Ohio, to find the inexpensive land that they told him awaited. Once in Ohio, Paul bought his first 80 acres, property that eventually grew to encompass 600.

With over thirty years of sound farming practices and knowledge of indigenous herbal plants, Paul has taken tracts of poorly farmed land, including strip mines, and turned them into his farm, a business, a school, and a sanctuary. As his sixtieth birthday approached, Paul decided to donate the first 70-acre parcel to the United Plant Savers organization which not encompasses 2000. United Plant Savers has dedicated the land as a Botanical Sanctuary with the purpose of preserving and studying endangered indigenous plants in Ohio.

Significance

The documentary project itself chronicles one man's love affair with his farm.  Additional video footage added to the web, will provide historical and archival information about indigenous plants and how those plants were used by native people and early settlers in this region. The documentary will prove to be an inspiration for those striving to tread more lightly on the earth, and for others it will passionately speak to living with less. It is important to tell this story, and I feel a social commitment to spread the word of sustainability. As humans we need to do more to protect our planet. I thank you in advance for your contribution!

HOW KICKSTARTER WORKS:

To make a pledge to The Sanctity of Sanctuary: Paul Strauss and the Equinox Farm, click the green “Back This Project” button. You will be asked to enter your pledge amount and select a reward. Then, you will go through and must complete the Amazon checkout process. If our project is successfully funded, your card will be charged when The Sanctity of Sanctuary reaches its funding deadline. If we do not reach our funding goal, your card is never charged. The Official Donor Reward is the target reward, but we have super cool rewards for all levels and budgets. I thank you in advance for your pledge!

You can find out more about the film on the Sanctity of Sanctuary facebook page or find us on the web!  www.sanctityofsanctuary.com

The Team

Blis DeVault, Producer/Director

Jerome Wilson, Editor

Nikk Sutton, Director of Photography

Jeff Redefer, Sound Mixer

Ringo Jones, Technical Advisor

Andre Gribou, Composer

Michelle Davis, Advisor

Samantha Meza, Web Assistant

Anna Reid, Web Assistant

Additional Camera:

  • Eric Anderson
  • Blis DeVault
  • Lamar Ford
  • Pat Posani

Production Assistants:

  • Megan Askew
  • Lamar Ford
  • Kelly Farrell
  • Anna Reid
  • Peter Pham

FAQ

Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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  • Pledge $1 or more
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    20 backers

    Pledge $1 or more: our deepest gratitude and virtual thank you postcard commemorating the film. Your name will be placed on a master list of patrons that will be presented to Paul once the funding goal has been reached.

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    40 backers

    Receive above reward plus shout-out on the Sanctity of Sanctuary Facebook page letting everyone know we appreciate your help. You will also receive a digital download of the first five minutes of the film before it is released.

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    12 backers

    Receive above rewards plus we will also send you a link to a screen saver download of one of Paul's photographs of the farm.

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    2 backers

    Super Green Reward! Receive above rewards plus a seedling will be planted in your honor if you pledge on or before January 1, 2012. You will also receive a link to download The Green Corridor Map screen saver designed by artist Wendy Minor Viny who also appears in the film.

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    27 backers

    Receive above rewards plus a DVD copy of Sanctity of Sanctuary: Paul Strauss and the Equinox Farm. DVD will include additional material not available on the broadcast version.

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    Official Donor Reward! Receive above rewards plus your name will appear in the credit roll of the film. You will also receive a limited edition "Official Donor" T-Shirt.

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    7 backers Limited (13 left of 20)

    Sanctuary Walking Tour Spectacular. Receive above rewards plus a 4-hour walking tour of the UPS Sanctuary, with Paul Strauss. This reward is limited to this pledge level only and will be scheduled as a group tour based on Paul's availability. Transportation and accommodations are not included.

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    Receive above rewards plus a invitation to a private screening of the film with crew and Paul Strauss. Transportation and accommodations not included.

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    Super Mega Contributor Reward! Receive above rewards plus a critique of your creative work by the director via Skype. Also, you will be invite to a one night special contributors camp out at the farm, with the crew and Paul. Transportation, food and camping supplies not included.

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    1 backer

    Co-Executive Producer Reward. Receive above rewards plus Co-Executive Producer Credit in the film.

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Funding period

- (60 days)