The Hardwick Gazette

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Indie Film Screening Profiles Local Towing Family

ST. JOHNSBURY – Catamount Arts will present the Northeast Kingdom premiere of “Roland and Mary: A Winter of Towing in the Northeast Kingdom.” An independent film by director Dillon Tanner, the feature profiles legendary local tow-truck specialists Roland and Mary Duprey of St. Johnsbury. This special free screening takes place Sunday, Nov. 13, at 2:30 pm, at Catamount Arts, and will be followed by a live questions-and-answer session with Roland, Mary, and Tanner.

Tanner’s debut feature-length documentary explores the lovingly contentious relationship behind Roland’s Wrecker Service. Set against the stark backdrop of a Vermont winter, Tanner rides along on towing calls with his camera (which he was kindly told to shove somewhere on many occasions) while Roland and Mary take an honest look back at the trials of a difficult career, with the unflinching humor and stubborn independence that pulled them through.

Since 1976, Roland and Mary have owned and operated Roland’s Wrecker Service, a family business and fixture in the St. Johnsbury community. For 45 years, they’ve towed wrecks, hauled classic cars (and even a sailboat), and responded to roadside incidents ranging from moose accidents to winter weather disasters. Behind the scenes, they’ve raised a family, managed health crises, and survived many a setback with hardscrabble resilience and the irresistible wry wit characteristic of Northeast Kingdom natives.

Filmmaker Dillon Tanner screened “Roland and Mary” in Montpelier in October. The film’s Catamount Arts screening will be its first presentation in Mary and Roland’s community and is bound to attract a full house. Admission is by donation. The film runs just over an hour and is not rated.

For more information about this and other arts events happening this fall and winter at Catamount Arts, including additional independent film screenings by local artists, visit

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