Free Movie Night

The annual Monday Movie Madness series held in the stadium at Infinity Park has drawn in movie fans from across the Denver metro area in record numbers this summer.

Popularity of the summer movies has consistently grown since its inception in 2007 with a season-total fan attendance of just 1,750 to almost 14,000 in 2013. With more and more people becoming aware of the free movie series at Infinity Park, attendance is expected to reach yet another record in 2014.

Once again, movie fans were able to vote online from a list of over 40 movies in a Viewer’s Choice contest. Viewers were encouraged to vote through the use of social media — primarily Infinity Park’s Facebook page — where they could then enter to win a Kindle Fire from presenting sponsor AlphaGraphics Glendale. Several hundred votes were tabulated, and the top six movies were announced in early May to the delight of many.

The contest has consistently generated a movie lineup that includes family and classic movie favorites that appeal to a wide variety of ages.

Opening on a chilly night in June with the mega-hit “Frozen” from Disney brought in the largest movie night crowd ever at Infinity Park, followed by a second record-topping crowd for “The Lego Movie” at the end of June. July 7 brought the Tom Hanks classic “Big” to the jumbo screen with a hearty crowd who toughed it out through two rainstorms before the movie had to be stopped due to serious weather conditions approaching. Only the second time a movie had to be canceled over the seven-year history, the diehard crowd of movie fans remained reluctant to leave for the evening. Thanks to the stadium crew, weather radar was pulled up on the jumbo screen showing the imminent storm approaching, which hastened the crowd’s departure. July 21 brought another classic Disney favorite to the jumbo screen with “Mary Poppins” starring Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke.

Stadium Director of Operations Kieran Nelson weighed in on the ever-increasing popularity of Monday Movie Madness stating, “The fans that come to Infinity Park just love the whole experience of watching an outdoor movie, grabbing a bite to eat or sharing a picnic on a summer evening. It’s a great time to come together with family or friends and enjoy a free movie.”

Fans have also enjoyed having several food vendors and sponsors on-site, including Core Power, YMCA of Metropolitan Denver, Pinnacle Orthopedic Associates, Whole Foods Market Colorado Boulevard, Infinity Park, Garbanzo Mediterranean Grill, Maui Wowi Hawaiian Coffees and Smoothies, the Denver Cupcake Truck, Concentra Urgent Care and Lil’ Henry’s. Additional sponsors of the 2014 Monday Movie Madness series include presenting sponsors Wilks Broadcasting (92.5 The Wolf, Kool 105 and Mix 100), AlphaGraphics Glendale, Butler Rents, Turner Construction, Comcast/Xfinity, Hyatt Place and FirstBank.

Another new feature this year included a short film contest with Brigand Pictures. Independent filmmakers from all across the globe submitted their short films which were voted on in a number of areas including acting, editing, direction, writing, cinematography, sound editing and lastly, a “wildcard” factor. Brigand Pictures Short Film Contest organizer Benjamin Todd describes the wildcard as, “that something that you just really like in a film — it could have bad acting, but the storyline or the cinematography is great, so judges can award points for that, even if deductions had been made in other areas.” Contest winners included Elle Stranton, who was just 15 years old at the time she made her film “Love and Other Devices.” Elle made the trip to Infinity Park from California to see her short film aired on the jumbo screen to a crowd of over 3,000 on opening night, June 9, 2014. Additional winners include “Lightspin” by Eric Pare of Canada, “Animation Hotline” by Dustin Grella and “Molly” by Pepper Island Films. Contest submissions continue to come in for judging and the final two winners will be announced at Infinity Park in August before the feature movie is shown.

Movies in August will include “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” starring Gene Wilder on Aug. 4 and, back by popular demand for the third year in a row, the series will close on Aug. 18 with “The Princess Bride.” The stadium gates at Infinity Park open at 7 p.m. and the movie begins at 8.

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