All city events

The City of Waterloo has cancelled its in-person arts and culture events for 2020, replacing some with online versions, in support of physical distancing guidelines.  The City’s arts and culture team will be hosting special “pop-up” events, when permitted by public health guidelines.

Find information on all events hosted by the city. Stay updated by following the city events team on FacebookTwitter and Instagram, or by subscribing to our monthly newsletter.

Current Online and Pop-Up Programming

Trail Mix - Local Trails & Local Artists

Trail Mix is an auditory accompaniment for Waterloo trails. 

  • Step #1: Select your favourite local Waterloo trail
  • Step #2: Strap on some hiking shoes/boots
  • Step #3: Find the hidden QR codes along the trail
  • Step #4: Use your phones camera to scan the QR code
  • Step #5: Put on your headphones and listen to the Trail Mix!

Right now, the Trail Mix pilot project is only featured on the Forwell Trail. 

Trail Mix #1

Forwell Trail (University Ave - Manulife/King Street): Google Map Link

Featured artists: Eiyn SofYoung PilotRich BurnettElsa JayneJoJo WorthingtonChrista MercyBlankie 


Trail Mix #2
Walter Bean Grand River Trail (Park Rd/Grey Silo - Grand River Drive): Google Map Link

Featured artists: Tragedy Anne, Rufus John, Transstar, Mandippal, Sons of Shanley, STEVEDAVE, Preetam Sengupta, JP SUNGA, Alysha Brilla, Jenna Kessler

Lumen (September - November)

Lumen showcases light based new media, media art, and projection based installations - illuminating Waterloo through art and technology. With the Province of Ontario’s new changes to gathering limits, Lumen Lite moved to an online format with Lumen at Home.

Lumen at Home will feature a selection of film, music, and virtual art installations in various formats throughout the month. Artist have adapted their installations into engaging online content launching on Saturday September 26, with more content to be released throughout the month.

Community members are encouraged to interact with the art at and to share their experiences on social media by using the hashtag #Lumen2020.

Winter 2021

Winterloo (January 23 to 31)

Winterloo is an annual winter weather festival taking place January 23 to 31. More information will be available in December.  Visit our Winterloo page for updates.

Spring and Summer 2020 

Regular programming that may have been cancelled due to physical distancing measures.

Author Afternoons
Join us at the Visitor and Heritage Information Centre every Saturday at 1:00 p.m. for an afternoon celebrating the great authors, publishers, writers’ groups, and storytellers in our region.

Cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines.
Campfire (Multiple dates May to October)

Bring a blanket or your favourite hoodie and head uptown. Gather around the campfire with friends and neighbours for music, food, fire and more.

  • May 20 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • June 17 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • July 15 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • August 19 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • September 16 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • October 23 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
Canada Day (July 1)
This year, the City celebrated July 1st with a Community Artist Showcase video. The 30 minute video features musical performances by Elsa Jayne, Rufus John and 12 Mile Island, a poetry performance by Bashar Lulu Jabbour, and greetings from Mayor Jaworsky and city council. Visit our Canada Day page for more information. 
Day of Play (July 26)

Day of Play is a family-friendly day of crafts, fun physical activities, treats, fun and fresh air. Featuring various local artists and performers and hosted on the Waterloo Park Promenade.

Featured artists and activities to be announced. 

Cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines.

Duels (Multiple dates May to August)
Hosted alongside the Art Market, Duels features different artists battling head to head to showcase their talent. 

Cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines.
Final Fridays (Multiple dates May to August)
On the last Friday of the month (from May to August), everyone is invited to explore arts, culture and cuisine in the city's core. 

Cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines.

Movies in the Park-ing Lot (July to September)

We know we're used to Movies in the Park, but let's try the Parking Lot this summer. It's a pop-up drive-in! This is a free event. Find out more information on our Facebook Event Page.


  • Wonder Park (July 23)
  • The Princess Bride (July 30)
  • Call of the Wild (August 6)
  • Ford v Ferrari (August 13)
  • Dolittle (September 10)
  • American Graffiti (September 17)

Registration is required. 


About the registration:
  1. Each registration enters into a lottery system.
  2. All entries will get an email the day after registration closes to say if they have won a spot or not for the upcoming film.
  3. If you’ve won a spot, we’ll share all the details you’ll need (location, arrival time, concessions, etc).
  4. Didn’t get a spot? Enter for another night! We’ll also keep a wait list in case someone has to cancel.
  5. The registration form asks for the license plate and make of the vehicle you will be using. This will confirm entry to the lot and to ensure all attendees can see the screen from their vehicle. If you have questions or accessibility concerns please contact

Movies in the Park (Multiple dates July to September)

Join us for another year of Movies in the Park with Princess Cinemas and the Beat Goes On. On four nights this summer we will turn the Waterloo Park bandshell into a giant movie theatre. Starting at dusk, Canada's largest outdoor movie projector screen will be showing Movies in the Park. 

  • July 9 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • July 23 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • August 6 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • August 20 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • September 10 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)

Movie titles to be announced.

National Indigenous Peoples Days (June 21)

Sunday, June 21, 2020 is National Indigenous Peoples Day. City of Waterloo has been marking the occasion annually for the past five years, and for the last three years we have partnered with artist Luke Swinson who has created and installed an original art piece on the surface of Waterloo Public Square. This artwork serves as a visual reminder of the territory and land on which our city was founded. 

The artist, Luke Swinson has released his mural design and made a video discussing the significance of the design and his recognition of the day. You can watch Luke Swinson's video on the Create Waterloo YouTube page here.

Due to the public nature of the mural installation, Arts & Culture postponed the installation of the planned mural in Waterloo Public Square until July 21, 2020 when safety protocols and procedures could be maintained.

Watch a time lapse video of the mural installation on Create Waterloo's YouTube channel.

Open Streets (June 20, August 15)

Open Streets celebrates the livable cities movement, and has taken many forms since its inception. 

  • June 20 – “Street Art” theme (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • August 15 – “Word Play” theme (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)

Soap Opera in the Square (Multiple dates in July)

A four-part soap opera series featuring walk-on appearances by local celebrities. Originally planned for July 3, 10, 17, and 24. 

Cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines.

True North Waterloo Festival (June 2)

A festival featuring live music and more. In partnership with the True North Waterloo conference. 


Conference and Festival cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines.
Virtual Art Market (Multiple dates April to August)

Art Market takes place on Final Fridays. Art Market features artists, crafters, and makers from Waterloo and surrounding area selling in the public square. 

Due to the current public health concern, Create Waterloo has moved the Art Market online. Visit our virtual marketplace on Google Maps to shop the booths. Visit our Facebook page for more up to date event listings.

Want to be vendor at a market?
Apply today

"We Are Waterloo" Community Anthem - Artist in Residence project

Join the City of Waterloo's 2020 Artists in Residence, Richard Burrows and Christa Mercey as they  invite the community to participate in an art project culminating in a community anthem for an original song, "We are Waterloo".  

Each week, new elements of the song (vocals, drums, guitar, ukulele, and more) were added and taught through videos hosted on YouTube. Participants of every level are encouraged to follow along, create their own videos, and submit their creations. These will be assembled into a final version of the song which will premiere at the end of September as part of the City’s Culture Days programming.

Watch all the We Are Waterloo videos released so far on Create Waterloo's YouTube Channel. 

Find out more information on the Artist in Residence program on its web page.

We-Dance-Days (Multiple dates May to August)

Each month new instructors will be teaching a new style of dance. This fun-filled evening will get you moving to a new beat.

  • May 6, 12, and 27 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • June 3, 10 and 24 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • July 8, 22, and 29 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)
  • August 5, 12 and 26 (cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines)

Fall 2020

Culture Days (September 25 to 27)

Culture Days is a national celebration of arts and culture and promotes interaction between artists and their community. Visit the Culture Days website for more information on events.

Amplify Culture Summit (October 28)

Amplify is a full day summit celebrating creativity and innovation in Waterloo. Visit our Amplify page for full details.

Cancelled due to physical distancing guidelines.