The Square Lake Film & Music Festival connects music with film, providing opportunities for public exposure, collaboration, and recognition on a local and international level.
By combining music and film into one arts event, the Square Lake Festival utilizes the already thriving Minnesota music scene to draw in and create new audiences for the lesser known but equally exciting short film and animation projects of this region.

$500 first place
$250 second place
$100 third place
$250 International

The Square Lake Film & Music Festival focuses short films, 15 minutes or less in length. We are particularly interested in the genres of animation, experimental, short narrative, and short documentary. About 80% of our film program consists of Minnesota-made or regional work. Approximately 20% of our submissions come from National & International artists. Films are screened during 30 minute segments between musical acts. We occasionally screen a longer short (longer than 15 minutes yet under 30 minutes) that would fill an entire 30-minute film segment. We choose the films we will show approximately 30 days after the late submission deadline, and announce the prize winners at the festival. If you submit via a waiver, and your film is selected as a prize winner, a regular submission fee will be deducted from your prize award. All submitting filmmakers receive one free admission regardless whether film is selected.

Overall Rating
  • Hallie Bahn

    This is truly a special festival, bringing together a great collection of filmmakers, animators, musicians, and artists of all backgrounds. The location is absolutely beautiful, the organizers are incredible and the entire event is honestly pretty awe-inspiring. I was super honored to have one of my films take home second place!

    August 2019
  • This festival! So lovely. The vibe was great, the crowd was so relaxed and friendly, and selection of films were fresh and inspiring. ADVENT CALENDAR played so well, and my crew and I were thrilled to find we'd won an award. Will definitely be going back next year!

    August 2019
  • Cy Dodson

    If you're looking for a festival that is more about art than glamour, this is the place to send your short film. Having screened three films here, I would say without a doubt, it's one my favorites. Come early and stay late, because there's lots to take in. I would highly recommend a submission! Oh, and leave your film pitches at home, you won't need them here.

    August 2018
  • This is an awesome festival in a beautiful and relaxed location!

    August 2018
  • Deacon Warner

    I love the Square Lake Film & Music Festival! Such a beautiful setting--such great people volunteering their time to put it together. After enjoying it as an audience member it was a privilege to have my film part of it this year!

    August 2018