The stars came out to shine during the Ripple Effect Blue Carpet Premiere at The Morton Theatre on March 26, 2023.  What a way to close out the EPA WaterSense Fix a Leak Week!  Thank you to everyone who packed the house to see what our talented young filmmakers created and to make lasting memories.  

Congratulations to Marcel, Jadin, & Sahara Fielteau took top honors in the 2023 Ripple Effect Film Project.  Their film entitled "24/7" received the Best in Festival Award. 

See photos from the event!

Ripple Effect Film Project Best in Festival: 24/7


Ripple Effect Film Project


The Ripple Effect Film Project invites local pre-K-12th grade filmmakers to submit short water-themed films for consideration for the Ripple Effect Blue Carpet Premiere.  The event showcases the finalists' films on the big screen at the historic Morton Theatre in downtown Athens.  

Look for the 2024 call for films in October 2023.

The Ripple Effect Blue Carpet Premiere is held as a closing celebration for the EPA WaterSense Fix a Leak Week. Be sure to take a moment to check your home for leaks. Find a leak you can't fix? Replace the fixture with a WaterSense-labeled product to save at least 20% more water than the traditional counterpart.

LOCAL FILMS DEBUTED AT THE World Water Film Festival on Sunday, March 19, in New York City.  The festival kicked off the United Nations Water Week and Conference, with an expected audience of approximately 20K from 440 water organizations in town for the International Decade for Action on Water for Sustainable Development.  

The films shown were the 2022 Best in Festival, Thirsty World, by Waylon Vaughn, and a 2023 Best in Category winner, The Day the Aliens Took the Water, by Banks County Primary's 2nd Grade.


The over-arching theme for 2023 was "A Ripple Effect."  Through film, students lend a voice to water, reminding us that by caring for each little drop, we can be the change we need in this world of water.  Similar to how tossing a small stone into a lake creates far-reaching ripples, a single interaction with water, positive or negative, has the power to create a far-reaching ripple, affecting whether or not we can ensure a water-secure world.  If we choose to use water wisely in our homes, we place less demand on our water supply and help our community move through a drought.  When we leave a fast-food bag on a picnic table, the wind blows the trash to the ground, where it is carried away to the river by stormwater. Your actions matter.

Filmmakers used their imagination, creativity, and artistic talents to make a splash in our world.  They created 30 to a 90-second short films illustrating the ripple effect in the following water-related topics: 

  1. Using Water Wisely
  2. Rivers Alive
  3. Imagine a Day Without Water

You may feel like you are one small drop, but your actions have the power to create a ripple.  Deciding to use water wisely and encouraging others to do the same protects our water supply.  

Household leaks are the biggest source of wasted water in the United States. You can reduce water waste by stopping leaks and conserving water. The Environmental Protection Agency's WaterSense program makes it easy for you to use less water. Using third-party testing, products using 20% less water than the traditional counterpart and perform as well or better earn the coveted WaterSense label. Look for the logo and install these items when replacing/updating fixtures or installing outdoor watering systems.

Share ways to be water efficient
Show what the WaterSense label looks like
Illustrate the benefits of using WaterSense products
Chase down leaks at home or at work
Explain how WaterSmart, the customer portal for ACC water customers, allows you to take control of your water use

ACC Water Conservation Office
ACC WaterSmart 
Water Use it Wisely
EPA's WaterSense
EPA's WaterSense Fix a Leak Week
Detect and Chase Down Leaks
Fix a Leak Week Family Fact Sheet
Drip Calculator
WaterSense Statistics and Facts
Shower Better Month
Sprinkler Spruce Up

What is the Ripple Effect Film Project?

Local K-12 students have the opportunity to write, produce, and star in short, water-themed films. The submissions are narrowed down to the finalist round, then judged on creativity, originality, technical skill, and message content. The finalists' films are shown on the big screen during the Blue Carpet Premiere, where the winners are announced and cash prizes are awarded.  

The festival's theme changes each year slightly but always involves water and opportunities to incorporate the Georgia Standards of Excellence into the production. The 2022/2023 Ripple Effect Film Project theme is A Ripple Effect to emphasize how our interactions with water recognize the role clean water plays for all people, our environment, our communities, and our homes.  

The event is part of the Athens-Clarke County Water Conservation Office's promotion of the EPA WaterSense Fix a Leak Week - March 20-26, World Water Day - March 22, and the UN 2023 Water Conference, which kicks off March 19, 2023

Brought to you by ACC Water Conservation Office, Stormwater Management, Keep Athens-Clarke County Beautiful, & Leisure Services.
Find out more about fixing leaks around your house at EPA WaterSense. 


Title: Thirsty World
Category:  Healthy Water, Healthy Environment
Filmmakers: Waylon Vaughn
School: Clarke Middle School