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Made Here

There From Here: Film chronicles biking 640-mile route in rural Vermont

Follow a group of bikepackers on a 640 mile ride through Vermont.

There From Here, the season finale documentary film in the Made Here series, follows a group of bikepackers in 2021 along the Vermont Super 8, a grueling 640-mile route. The film, directed by Jon Mercer and Tim O'Donnell from Amesbury, Massachusetts, tells a story of gratitude, a connection to the land, and an admiration for the overlooked wild places in the rolling green hills of Vermont.

Bikepacking is multi-day biking, where riders carry only the bare necessities and ride on rural trails and roads for multiple days, camping as they go. The Vermont Super 8 is an event that happens annually in September, where riders can choose sections of marked routes, or choose to travel the entire 640-plus route that loops back to the starting point.

Director John Mercer commented on the making of the film for

"As filmmakers, co-director Tim O’Donnell and I have been drawn to individual and team sports as a way to explore social issues and personal connections. When we first heard about the Vermont Super 8, the thought of capturing such a wild experience in our home area of New England was really enticing."

“Getting to know the riders before the event was crucial to the storytelling process. The Vermont Bikepackers board, especially Daniel Jordan and Danielle Blanca, became close collaborators, helping us tell a story that goes beyond just the ride. We delve into the riders’ personal lives, exploring topics like family, relationships, mental health, and the communities that support them along the way."

“Making the film offered a chance to see some parts of Vermont I hadn’t experienced before, and what emerged during production was a genuine connection between riders and the land along with this admiration for the wild places that still exist in Vermont. Growing up in New England, I think there was always this sense of looking west for the real adventures — that elevation or square mileage somehow added up to more."

There From Here premieres on Vermont Public's main TV channel 8 p.m. on Thursday, May 9 and is available now on demand.

As Director of Content Partnership, Eric works with individuals and organizations to make connections leading to more Vermont stories. As Producer of the Made Here series, Eric partners with filmmakers from New England and Quebec to broadcast and stream local films. Find more info here: