Free Events at PCFF

Thanks to the Providence Children's Film Festival, culture doesn't have to cost a thing.

The Providence Children's Film Festival, February 12 to 21, bursts with great indie films for all ages. (I'll happily catch Landfill Harmonic  February 15, Gilder Center for the Arts, $10 without a kid.) But, little known secret, the festival also packs in a ton of free screenings and workshops so families can keep busy this February vacation without breaking the bank. Check out the free events below, and visit providencechildrensfilmfestival.com for the full schedule.

FEB. 6, 4 p.m., and FEB. 16, 10:30 a.m.: "Between the Stacks," Providence Athenaeum, 251 Benefit St., Providence

Promising to be a " 'reel' book lover's delight," the all-ages events boast a varied showcase of narrative short films.

FEB. 12, 3 p.m.: "Superheroes and Villans," RISD's Metcalf Auditorium, 20 North Main St., Providence

Check out short films of heroism and corruption from around the globe. Best-suited for viewers older than ten.

FEB. 14, 10:30 a.m.: Be a Cinema Detective, RISD's Metcalf Auditorium, 20 North Main St., Providence

This free event, presented in partnership with the Media Smart Libraries Project, encourages kids to think critically about what they watch. Check out short films and participate in a Cinema Detective program.

FEB. 14, 1:30 p.m., and FEB. 21, 2:15 p.m.: "Betwixt and Between Eleven and Thirteen," RISD's Metcalf Auditorium, 20 North Main St., Providence

This mini double feature hosts two films about the defining transition from pre-teen to teen. Recommended for ages ten and older.

FEB. 14, 3 p.m., and FEB. 21, 10:30 a.m.: "More than a Selfie," RISD's Metcalf Auditorium, 20 North Main St., Providence

"More than a Selfie" features film shorts about finding your own identity for ages eight and older. The multi-national films, suitable for ages eight and older, include a tale of an adult sent back to kindergarten and a plant destroyed by a forest fire that seeks to become green again.

FEB. 16, 1:30 p.m.: "Make a Stop-Motion Movie," Washington Park Library, 1316 Broad St., Providence

Learn all about animated storytelling and make a short film with fellow participants. Recommended for ages eight and older.

FEB. 18, 6:30 p.m.: "Youth Filmmaker Showcase with RISD Art Circle and Film Talk," RISD's Metcalf Auditorium, 20 North Main St., Providence

A showcase of youth-produced films, plus a Q-and-A with the RISD Art Circle teen jury and several youth filmmakers.

FEB. 19, 2:30 p.m.: Let's Get the Rhythm screening and workshop, Wanskuck Library, 233 Veazie St., Providence

This documentary chronicles hand-clapping games on inner-city playgrounds and around the world. Recommended for ages eight and older.

FEB. 20, 2 p.m.: The Year We Thought About Love screening and talk-back, Avon Cinema, 260 Thayer St., Providence

The documentary, which is recommended for ages thirteen and older, goes behind the scenes at one of the longest-running youth queer theaters in America.

FEB. 21, 12:15 p.m.: "Try-Umph," RISD's Metcalf Auditorium, 20 North Main St., Providence

This selection of shorts, recommended for ages eight and older, deals with the theme of overcoming obstacles, including the Oscar-nominated short film, "Bear Story." After the screenings, stick around for a talk-back.

FEB. 21, 3:45 p.m.: "Magic Carpet Ride," RISD's Metcalf Auditorium, 20 North Main St., Providence

These all-ages shorts take viewers on a whirl around the world.