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Filmmaker brings documentary about Appalachian Trail to Read All Over Books
Katherine Imp (right) trekked along the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine
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Date published: 6/14/2012
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In 2010, Katherine Imp, a recent law school graduate, set out on a mission to prove there was more to her than met the eye. To do that, she decided to not only hike the Appalachian Trail from Georgia to Maine but to film the journey as well. Her best friend and younger brother joined her on the nearly 2,200 mile hike.
Read All Over Books is showing the result, a documentary titled "Beauty Beneath the Dirt," on Wednesday, June 20, as part of the film's tour this summer. Imp's brother Brandon will hold a question-and-answer session after the 70-minute screening. The tour stops in locations from Georgia to Maine, mirroring the trail's path.
"My hope is [that] when people watch the documentary, they are inspired to follow their own dreams and take the time to go on great adventures," said Imp.
The hike took five months, and it was far from easy.
"I think the hardest part of this experience was not hiking 2,200 miles but rather filming ourselves as a group while hiking 20 miles a day," Imp said. "None of us had any filming experience. But I realized this was my opportunity to show what I could do."
According to Imp, hiking as a group brought some unique challenges.
"Most people that hike the Appalachian Trail hike alone because then they only have to worry about the needs of themselves," she said. "By hiking together, we were forced to work together. It really tested relationships. People will be able to connect to those ups and downs on the trail."
Brandon Imp, who has appeared at all of the film's screenings, said he is grateful he was able to share this opportunity with his sister.
"The Appalachian Trail has removed my emotional fat, my negative emotional qualities such as jealously and selfishness," he said. "Obviously they still exist, but they are very much so reduced. My relationship with my sister is probably the strongest relationship I have with anyone now."
Katherine Imp said she also struggled with balancing her duties as a filmmaker and a hiker.
"The hardest thing for me was figuring out how to hike and have that personal experience while trying to figure out how to bring that experience to our audience."
What: "Beauty Beneath the Dirt" screening Where: Read All Over Books, 307 William St., Fredericksburg When: Wednesday, June 20, 7 p.m. Cost: $7 cash at the door Info: beautybeneaththedirt .com