About the Comcast Outdoor Film Festival
The Comcast Outdoor Film Festival started in 1996 as the first major outdoor screening event in the United States. The concept was simple, offer free movies to the public, raise funds and awareness for the NIH Charities and offer sponsors and local merchants an opportunity for cause related marketing. Funding from Comcast and other sponsors allows the event to continue. The event began on the grounds of the NIH Charities and remained there until the events of 9/11 eliminated public access to the grounds of NIH. The film festival then moved to the grounds of American Speech Language Hearing Association and Strathmore on Rockville Pike in Bethesda, MD. With access to the Grovsenor Metro and the parking garage, nightly attendance often reached 10,000 people. Development of the Symphony Woods project consumed this property and the event moved to the Universities of Shady Grove for two years. This year, the outdoor film festival moves back to North Bethesda at the invitiation of Federal Realty Investment Trust's Mid-Pike Plaza, soon to be redeveloped and rebranded as Pike & Rose.
The Comcast Film Festival has always been a pioneer in outdoor movie presentation with the largest screens in the United States and state of the art cinema and digital projection. The production values are impressive to attendees and film makers alike.
2012 brings the introduction of three new elements: live music with a focus on local up and coming bands; gourmet food trucks (in addtition to our traditional vendors); and wine/champagne and beer.
About the NIH Charities
The Children's Inn - The Children's Inn at NIH is a private, nonprofit, family-centered residence for pediatric patients at the National Institutes of Health and their families. Its purposes are to keep children together with their families during serious illness, reduce their stress, and facilitate healing through mutual support.
Special Love - is a charity that provides cancer families a network of support, made up of other patients and families who know and understand the trials and triumphs of the cancer experience. The charity began with a week of summer fun called Camp Fantastic which has grown into a year full of events, with over 15 week and weekend retreats and special outings.
Friends of the Clinical Center - provides emergency financial assistance to help patients and their families with mortgage and rent payments, for example; with utility bills payments; with transportation expenses to and from the Clinical Center; with hotel expenses; and with medical bills associated with participation in research protocols at the National Institutes of Health. FOCC has also purchased special equipment (a reader, for example) for a patient with special sight needs; and, too, has paid the course registration fee for a patient who was about to undergo brain surgery in order to enhance the quality of her life.