BiTFest: How I Survived Watching Sci Fi Movies for 24 hours straight!

Every years about 15 people cram into a mancave and watch sci-fi films for 24 hours straight. I brought my microphone and documented the whole thing. Did I survive? Well, yes.

For the past 12 (coming on 13) years, Jeffy & Jackie have been hosting a 24 hour sci-fi fest in their home.  It’s called “BiTFest” (Boston is too far). From noon to noon, a group of friends stay captive in the video room/converted garage to watch science fiction films. I’ve gone for the past 5 or 6 years. I think. Last year I recorded the event. Get an inside look! or and inside listen.
Coming up, hear the full post fest trivia game and an interview with the man who puts on the festival in his place every year, Jeffy Branion.
Original audience member John Santry tell the  back story after the jump…

“Most of us lived in Boston around the same time, while going to college and for a while after. People would move away, but return annually around Presidents’ Day to attend the Boston Sci-Fi Fest. The Fest is basically two days, but people would come for several extra days and stay with those of us who remained in Boston. These “Returners” would also tell friends in their new lands (New York, California, Texas) about the Fest, resulting in new recruits.”

Over the years, most everyone from “The Core” group moved away from Boston. In 1999, I was living in Brookline, near the site of the Fest in those days, which was the Coolidge Corner Theater (it is now at the Somerville Theater). My gracious roommates and I hosted an influx of Returners, while some overflow rented rooms at a nearby hotel. This was SF24, the 24th Fest. Some of the guys had been going since SF13.

Later that year, I moved out here to Los Angeles, making 2000 (SF25) my first year as a Returner and the first year without one of The Core being able to host. I don’t remember all of the logistical details of the visit, but as I recall I was in town for just two days and a full 24 hours of those days was spent in the theater. I’m from the Boston area, and it felt weird to be in town without seeing my family or my Boston friends. Afterwards, I told the rest of the Returners that without people from The Core remaining in town, to support a longer stay, it seemed like too much traveling for so many people. So that was the last year that we attended the Boston Sci-Fi Festival. Jeffy started hosting our own, much smaller Fest in 2001.

Last year was BITFest 12, so for the original Core SF13 crowd it was the year of Fest Equilibrium.


  1. I’m a afraid attendance is limited and by invitation only, as it is held at someones’s house 🙂 The idea of renting a space and charging admission has been knocked around before, but it would be a big step. If you are ever in Boston for Presidents’ Day (and who doesn’t love Boston in February!) I would recommend the SF festival there. And Cinefamily in L.A. does some 24-hour marathons.

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