Scottsdale Microsoft Store to Host Annual ImageMakers and Film Making Festival

Local Youth Develop Tech Skills Through Photography and Digital Arts

On Wednesday, April 13 and Thursday, April 14, 2011, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale will be having its annual DigiKids ImageMakers and Film Festival from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Microsoft Store inside Scottsdale Fashion Square Mall, which is located at 7014 E. Camelback Road in Scottsdale. The festival will showcase Club members' achievements in photography and digital arts which includes movie making, photo illustration, music making, and graphic design. This two-day event presented by the Microsoft Store is free and open to the public.

Starting at 6 p.m., the first place winners of the ImageMakers photography program will be displayed on all the computer monitors throughout the Microsoft Store. ImageMakers is a year-round course that encourages Club members to learn and practice black-and-white, color, digital and alternative process photography. The program features three levels - Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced - and teaches the use of photography as an art and a vocation. Each level can stand on its own or Club members can graduate from one level to the next. Winners were selected in the following age groups: 6-9 years, 10-12 years, 13-15 years, and 16-18 years.

At 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., the digital arts entries from each of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale nine branches and outreach services will be officially presented to attendees.

The digital arts program encourages creativity and technical ability through the use of the Digital Arts Suite (DAS) programs: Music Tech, Photo Tech, Movie Tech, and Design Tech. Based on a particular theme, Club members create digital music; photo illustrations, graphic designs or websites; write screenplays; or produce short films.

"We are excited to partner with the Microsoft Store to showcase the talents of children and teens in our community," said Steve Davidson, president/CEO of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale. "Programs like these help build confidence and motivates Club members to explore new avenues for artistic expression through technology. Attendees will be impressed on how quickly and effortlessly today's youth grasp software tools and create amazing pieces of art."

"We're excited to extend and deepen our commitment through providing technology to the Scottsdale community and the larger Phoenix area," said Kevin Turner, Microsoft's Chief Operating Officer.

About The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale:
Since 1954, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale has provided more than 100,000 Northeast Valley youth with a positive, supervised environment to explore the power of their potential. Today we serve 16,000 children and teen through the organization's nine branches and 12 outreach sites located in Scottsdale, Fountain Hills, Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, Hualapai Indian Community and other Northeast Valley neighborhoods. The Club offers more than 100 youth development programs emphasizing five core areas: the arts; character & leadership development; education & career development; health & life skills; and sports, fitness & recreation. For more information please visit www.bgcs.org.

About the Microsoft Store:
Microsoft opened its first-ever retail store on October 22, 2009 in Scottsdale, Arizona to give shoppers a chance to experience the best of Microsoft and its partners, engage more directly with customers and improve the experience of purchasing and using technology. Additional stores were opened in Mission Viejo, CA (October 29, 2009); Lone Tree, CO (June 10, 2010); San Diego, CA (June 24, 2010); Oak Brook, IL (November 4, 2010); Bloomington, MN (November 6, 2010); Bellevue, WA (November 18, 2010) and Costa Mesa, CA (March 24, 2011).

The Microsoft Store offers an edited assortment of best-in-class products, including Windows 7 PCs, Windows Phones, Kinect for Xbox 360, Office 2010 and more. Customers can learn new technology skills in the store's theater space and work with Microsoft Store employees for personalized PC setup and training. For more information, visit www.MicrosoftStore.com.