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North Pole, NY is a feature-length documentary about Santa's Workshop, one of the very first theme parks in the U.S. Battling against a changing economy, the digital world, and a con-man who tries to steal Christmas, the dreamers in one small town vow to keep the park open and the magic of Christmas alive all year.



I've loved theme parks and roadside attractions since I was a kid. In 2012, I visited Santa's Workshop with the intention of doing a larger documentary about the history of theme parks. I became so enchanted with the park, the people, and the town of Wilmington, that I decided to make the entire feature on Santa's Workshop. I want to share the magic of Santa's Workshop and North Pole, NY with the world.

The economic struggles of small towns across the U.S. are well-documented. As chain stores continue to replace mom and pop stores, Main Street U.S.A. is dying. Roadside attractions, once popular among state highway travelers, are rapidly disappearing in the U.S. or being replaced by behemoth amusement parks full of thrill rides. 

Wilmington is proof of the enduring power of both small town communities and the American roadside attraction. Overcoming floods, the recession, and a shady business deal, Santa's Workshop has provided generations of people with their first jobs since 1949. It is a true piece of 1950's Americana.

North Pole, NY is a story of resilience, the power of nostalgia and a portrait of the dreamers in one small town that have vowed to keep the magic of Christmas alive all year round.

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Portland Premiere! (Portland, OR). October 27th, 1 pm, Clinton St theater. Q&A with the filmmakers to follow. Tickets on sale now.

Seattle Premiere! (Seattle, WA). October 28th, 1 pm, NW Film Forum, Q&A with the filmmakers to follow. Tickets on sale now.



Indie Street Film Festival (Red Bank, NJ). July 2018. WINNER - AUDIENCE AWARD: BEST FEATURE FILM.

Free Range Film Festival (Wrenshall, MN). June 2018.

Lake Placid Center for the Arts (Lake Placid, NY).  June 2018.

SF DocFest (San Francisco, CA). June 2018.

New Haven Docs at Yale University (New Haven, CT). June 2018. 

IFF Boston (World Premiere). April 2018. 


Christa Orth, producer (left) and Ali Cotterill, director (right) have been collaborators since 2004. Their short films have screened at 100+ festivals around the world, won several awards, and been broadcast on Logo TV and Current TV. North Pole, NY, is their first feature. 

When they're not filming in the beautiful Adirondacks, Ali works as a film and video editor and Christa works as a consultant at a fundraising and design firm. They're based in Brooklyn, NY.

Want to contact us? Email us at northpolenyfilm (at) gmail (dot) com. 




 "A lovingly cheerful look at a slice of post-WWII Americana."

Beyond Chron, June 2018 (SF DocFest review)

"Do yourself a favor and keep an eye out for this little gem because it will make you feel good like the warm memory of your best Christmas ever."

Unseen Films, April 2018 (IFF Boston review)


Download our full Press Kit here.