Texas Film Commission names Nacogdoches "Film Friendly"
Posted 06 - 30 - 2008
Pictured from left, Donna Maisel, NEDCO; Bruce Partain, Nacogdoches County Chamber President/CEO; Carol Pirie, Texas Film Commission; State Representative Wayne Christian; Judy McDonald, NEDCO; Mayor Roger Van Horn; Shirley Luna, program co-chair; Kim Luna Snyder, Chamber board of directors chair; and Melissa Sanford, Nacogdoches Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Carol Pirie, Texas Film Commission deputy director, announced that Nacogdoches is recognized as Film Friendly.

Efforts by the Nacogdoches County Chamber of Commerce, with help from Donna Maisel at NEDCO, made the designation possible. According to Chamber President/CEO Bruce Partain, "This was a good example of our organizations working well together and also with the City and the CVB."

The city had to meet three main criteria to earn this designation:
1) Attendance at a daylong Film Friendly Texas workshop by at least one official community representative, i.e., a member of your city government, convention and visitors bureau, chamber of commerce, economic development council, etc.;
2) Passage of Film Guidelines, as approved by the Texas Film Commission; and
3) Inclusion of selected area locations in the Texas Film Commission's location database (They asked for at least ten. Each location usually includes several scenes or specific objects of interest, and each of these scenes often has a series of shots to be stitched together digitally to make a continuous panorama of around 100 to 180 degrees).

Maisel attended the workshop in January in Texarkana. Partain said the work had started before then.

"I met Carol Pirie during a 'Save the Railroad' event in Palestine," Partain said. "Then, in the Spring of 2007 Texas Film Commission location manager John Crowley visited Nacogdoches with Laurnie Durusoe, a Californian with East Texas land interests. She is also very interested in potential film production in East Texas. Melissa Sanford with the CVB and I toured John and Laurnie around Nacogdoches. That day, John shot about six locations and later posted them on the Texas Film Commission site. Last month I shot another half dozen locations and sent them to Austin. So we had our required ten locations."

Partain said work continued with City Manager Jim Jeffers and other city staff, including Sarah O'Brien, Main Street Manager, to have the Film Guidelines placed on the June 17 City Commission agenda. The guidelines were passed unanimously.
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