Local filmmaker highlights The Uptown in new documentary

RICHLAND, Wash. — The Uptown is an iconic location in the Tri-Cities area. One local filmmaker pays homage to the strip-mall with a documentary focused on some of the shops.

Connor McFarlane grew up in the Tri-Cities area. In his senior year at Hanford High School, he made a feature film that made it’s premiere at Fairchild Cinemas.

Now, he’s at Brigham Young University of Idaho where he’s taking several film classes – and now he’s highlighting some of his favorite shops in Tri-Cities in his next feature.

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“I would say this is a tribute more than anything,” McFarlane said. “They’ve given me so much joy and happiness from all the time I’ve spent there.”

McFarlane filmed the piece during the height of the 2020 pandemic, when most businesses in the area had to shut-down due to emergency orders. The film highlights the struggles that many local business owners faced.

“It’s the story of the people that run these businesses, and what’s special about the business,” McFarlane said. “How they got started with it, and really just kind of a look into the lives of these small business owners.”

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The film focuses on many businesses, including the Uptown Antique Market, Adventures Underground, and Finatics Tropical Fish to name a few.

“If you look deeper into it, from the surface, it’s really inspiring. Just the people that you buy from and the stuff from the store, it’s really amazing and interesting people that have their passion,” McFarlane said.

“If this can help any of the stores get more attention and more customers, then I hope that’s basically what it does.”

The film premieres on YouTube on January 5th. You can watch the documentary here.

To see a trailer of the film, click here.

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