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4th Annual Inspire Film Festival in The Woodlands — What to See and Do!

This President’s Day Weekend (February 13-17) will mark the 4th Inspire Film Festival (IFF) in The Woodlands. Founded by local resident Jane Minarovic, IFF presents 26 international documentary feature and short films that celebrate the human spirit—and are sure to inspire.

This year’s theme is Visionaries, with the bulk of the cinematic stories centering on wise and imaginative people from all over the globe who look to our collective future through a bright, bold lens.

The Woodlander’s Lead Content Curator and IFF insider Nickole Kerner Bobley shares her own film fest itinerary to give us a sneak-peek at the “chicken soup for the soul” batch of curated films coming to our town.

Nickole’s Itinerary:


4:00pm – Pick up passes and program books at the IFF Box Office located in Market Street in the old Kate Spade retail space (across from Tommy Bahamas).

4:30pm – Walk to The Woodlands Waterway Square.

5:00pm – Dinner at Sorriso!

6:30pm – Attend the free and open-to-the-public Short Films Program in Waterway Square. I’m excited to meet Beneath the Ink’s subject Billy White and film director Cy Dodson and Feel of Vision’s Lonnie Bedwell!

8:30pm – Rock out at the 1980’s themed VIP Party for festival sponsors and invited guests.

10:00pm – After-Party Drinks at Como Social Club at The Westin Hotel


5:00pm – Dinner at Cyclone Anaya’s Tex-Mex Kitchen on Waterway Square with A.J. Murray, Official Spokesperson of IFF, and his mother Cynthia. A.J. is an incredible actor who happens to be disabled. When not performing, he spends his time advocating for disabled people in the arts.

8:00pm – Attend I Want My MTV film and listen to the after-panel with Alan Hunter, one of the original MTV video jockeys. Post a photo to Instagram!


9:30am – Attend Judge Mitchell’s Tent Talk about his founding of a running club for addicts to turn their lives around and get a second chance at life.

12:00pm – Screening of Buddy. This film is about the relationship between humans and dogs – especially service dogs and their pet parents. Then meet service dogs!

1:45pm – Time crunch lunch at Mingo’s Latin Kitchen Food Truck parked outside the Pavilion entrance. Brisket tacos? Yes, please!

2:00pm – Must see the Oscar-nominated, The Cavewhich tells the story of female doctors working alongside their male counterparts in a Syrian subterranean hospital.

5:30pm – Dinner at Teriyaki Madness.

7:00pm – Attend Jim Allison: Breakthrough, a true story of one man’s warm-hearted visionary quest to find a cure for cancer.

10:00pm – IFF After-Party Dancing at Mahoney’s Texish Irish Pub on Waterway Square!


9:30am –  Reminder to leave super early this morning to nab a seat at the Breakthrough Tent Talk.

12:00pm – Not Yet Begun to Fight film screening.

5:00pm –  IFF Awards Ceremony and presentation of The Howard Hughes Corporation’s Inspire Award, awarded to the film voted most inspirational by the attendees.

8:00pm – Take Mom and Dad to The Interpreters screening. They missed it last year and I’m so thrilled it has been reprised this year. Afterwards, meet film subjects!


11:00am – Watch Ernie & Joe, a film about two San Antonio police officers who work in a mental health unit and help to divert people away from jail.

Reminder to tell first responders and police friends they can attend this film free today!

3:30pm –  Full of inspiration, meet family and friends at The Hebrews Coffee Trailer outside The Pavilion and talk about what specific type of community service work we want to be involved with during the remainder of 2020!

After a weekend of experiencing these incredible films about ordinary people doing extraordinary things and then meeting the real-life heroes, one begins to fully grasp the IFF tagline: Come As You Are. Leave Different.


For tickets, click here and download the Inspire Film Festival APP to map your festival weekend. And keep your eyes out for The Woodlander’s Kerner-Bobley. If you need tissues to pat those tears of joy during these emotional films, please know she comes prepared with supplies and has never met a stranger!

Please note, the film schedule is still finalizing and is subject to change.