Bozeman kicks off its eighth year of PechaKucha Nights on Sept. 12 and 13, featuring some of the most fascinating folks in town sharing their stories in mini-lectures.

The PechaKucha (pe-cha-ku-cha) idea started in Tokyo in 2003 and has spread across the globe to more than 1,000 cities.

Speakers talk while showing 20 images for 20 seconds each, ensuring that each story will be concise.

So if you’re not excited about one particular topic, don’t worry — it will be over in 6 minutes and 40 seconds, says Ross Rodgers, one of the people who started PechaKucha here in 2011.

Past topics have ranged from wine to wedding photography, mountain climbing to Barbie dolls, and one man’s journey from Eagle Scout to sex shop owner.

“It’s really fun,” said board member Kayte Kaminski. “It’s a presentation about anything literally on the planet — an organization, project, personal story — and it comes from our community.

“Usually they’re fantastic. Everyone does an awesome job telling their story.”

This Wednesday and Thursday at 6:40 p.m. will be Bozeman PechaKucha’s 28th presentation at the Ellen Theatre.

The same 10 presentations are planned each night, chosen from 19 applicants, Rodgers said. The organizers try to ensure there’s always a mix of funny, serious and adventurous stories.

This week Gail Gettler will talk about going to Tanzania with her daughter to volunteer at The Plaster Place, which treats club feet, cleft palates and severe burns. She’ll recount the story of a 6-year-old boy who underwent reconstructive surgery and was reunited with his mother.

Marcelina Pulcini’s talk “I am an Alcoholic: A Comedy,” follows “a drinking life that began in Bozeman High School and ended in the intake room of a rehab facility in Arizona,” according to the show information online. Kirby Hancock will speak on growing hemp in Montana. Professor Bill Kleindl will explain how using satellite images and photography can show man’s impact on the natural landscape. And Perrin Lundgren will salute Wendy Visscher, who is retiring after directing Bozeman’s Help Center for 44 years.

PechaKucha Nights are held four times a year, in September, November, February and April, Rodgers said, and they’re always looking for new presenters.





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