A previous art installation consisting of a person looking through the window of an oversized ViewMaster to see different slides of a comic.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Lumen?
Lumen is an annual, free, all-ages festival that is open to the public and run by the City of Waterloo’s Arts and Creative Industries team, Create Waterloo. The event features the work of artists as they explore the interplay of light, art, and technology in installations located throughout uptown Waterloo.

What time does Lumen start?
Lumen starts at 6:00 p.m. and runs until 11:00 p.m. on Saturday, September 23, 2023. Most of the installations will require low light, so we encourage you to visit once the sun sets, which should be at 7:30 p.m..

Where can I park?
There is a lot of free parking in uptown Waterloo. Visit this map to locate parking.
For Lumen 2023, please note that there are some parking lot closures including: Waterloo Park Lot off the Young Street entrance, Waterloo Public Library lower lot, and the Erb Street Lot near the Visitor Information Centre.

Is Lumen free?
Yes! The entire festival is free and you do not need to register for a ticket.

What time does Lumen start and end?
Lumen starts at 6:00 p.m. and runs until 11:00 p.m. on Saturday, September 23, 2023.

Where are the Washrooms?
Washrooms can be accessed at the following locations:
Visitor and Heritage Information Centre (10 Father David Bauer Drive)
City Hall (100 Regina Street South) Accessible washroom and baby changing table available
Waterloo Memorial Recreation Complex (101 Father David Bauer Drive) Accessible washroom and baby changing table available
Waterloo Park Washroom (located near the Log School House and the Impulse installation)

Are there any safe spaces I can go if I don’t feel safe during the event?
If at any time you don’t feel safe at Lumen, please go to the nearest information booth and speak to the Lumen Volunteer there. Each information booth will have access to a radio which connects them with our festival security.

Is there a festival map?
Yes. The Google Map of the festival can be found at this link.

Is there a lost and found?
Yes, please bring all lost and found items to the Visitor and Heritage information Centre located at the corner of Erb & Caroline. Lost items will be available for pickup at Waterloo City Hall starting on Monday September 25th.

Are there first aid services on site?
There isn’t a specific location for first aid at Lumen. But all of our security personnel are trained in first aid and have access to first aid kits. If you are in need of first aid, please notify City of Waterloo staff at the nearest information booth for assistance.

What if I don't feel well before coming?
Festival attendees who are experiencing any potential symptoms of COVID-19 are asked to stay at home. If you think you might have symptoms we ask that you complete the Ontario COVID-19 Self Assessment Tool before coming to the festival.

As an artist how do you get your work in Lumen next year?
Create Waterloo, the City of Waterloo's arts and culture team, puts out an open call each year. Be sure to follow us on Instagram and join our newsletter to make sure you don't miss the next open call.

Is there an age limit for Lumen?
No, community members of all ages are encouraged to participate.

I’m a member of the media, how can I contact someone about Lumen?
Please contact festivals@waterloo.ca to connect with someone on our team.

Are strollers, bikes, etc. allowed at Lumen?
Absolutely. Lumen is a festival that requires moving throughout uptown Waterloo to explore the various installations. Unfortunately, we are unable to provide the free bike valet at this year's festival. There are various locations to lock your bike throughout uptown Waterloo.

Is there anywhere to charge my phone?
There are various electrical outlets in Waterloo Public Square that you can use to charge your phone. Please do not leave your phone unattended while charging.

I have questions about specific accommodations or accessibility concerns.
The City of Waterloo is committed to working with individual community members to make sure Lumen is as accessible as possible. We are happy to work with you on a specific accommodation plan for Lumen. Please contact festivals@waterloo.ca for more information.