‘Don’t Be a Zombie’ video contest announces winner, filmmaker shares his inspiration


LOWVILLE, N.Y. (WWTI) — The UP! Coalition of Lewis County recently announced their winner for their first video competition, and saw impressive results according to the Coalition Coordinator.

The UP! Coalition of Lewis County focuses on tackling alcohol and drug use in teens throughout the area. But, to connect with teens and young adults, Coalition Coordinator Cassie Forbus stated they utilize creative platforms.

The Coalition currently has a presence on many social media platforms including TikTok. According to Backus, the filmmaking competition, “Don’t Be a Zombie,” was a way to channel creativity.

The contest was open to all Lewis County residents and was centered around threats that accompany teen drug and alcohol use.

Winning submission filmmaker Travis Widrick, is a Lewis County native who recently moved back to the area due to the COVID-19 shutdown. When returning, he said he realized how prevalent drug and alcohol issues are and his want to have a voice. 

Widrick produced a one-minute film with no dialogue with focuses on teen drunk driving and the drastic consequences that follow.

The competition concluded on August 6, 2020. Submissions were produced by families, high school groups and local residents.

The grand prize awarded to Widrick totaled $1,000, with additional prizes granted to second, third and a people’s choice winner.

Watch the winning film above.


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