(1915-2019), board member of Blue Planet United and star of BPU’s award-winning film, SPIRIT OF PLACE (2010)*. A longtime community activist, teacher, and naturalist, Dr. Scaff was a passionate advocate for social and environmental causes and an important donor to Blue Planet United. Until her death in March 2019, Marilee was the nation’s oldest living girl scout and an accomplished author who wrote her best known book, Strength for the Journey, at age 102. A survivor of a POW/internment camp in the Philippines during World War II, Scaff went on to have a distinguished career as an educator in public schools and universities.
In order to celebrate and to promote her legacy, Blue Planet United is re-releasing SPIRIT OF PLACE, making it freely available on this and other web sites. The 29-minute film addresses the importance of wildness in a technologically transformed and urbanizing world. Featuring Marilee Scaff’s observations about a life lived close to nature, the film celebrates the powerful sense of wonder that springs from human encounters with wildlife and spectacular scenery. The purpose of the film is to remind nature lovers everywhere of the inspiring places that add meaning to their lives. It aims to encourage young people, especially, to discover the true wealth hidden in wild landscapes and seascapes. The film builds slowly to an emotional climax that explores human spirituality and mortality at its most profound level, inviting both secular and religious interpretations of our changing relationship with Nature.
Spirit of Place
Written, directed and produced by Monty Hempel
*Winner of the John Muir Award, Yosemite International Film Festival, 2011
Click on play button below to view film