The Conversation festival LAMPA will take place on June 28 and 29 in Cēsis Castle Park. The number of visitors to the festival, now already in its fifth year, has been increasing every year. Therefore, especially keeping in mind those who will be attending for the first time, we have prepared this list of practical information to help festival-goers plan their time and make their visit to the festival as comfortable as possible. Remember that admission is free!
As in previous years, residents of Cēsis and nearby areas are welcome to ride their bicycles to the festival. Racks will be provided to lock up bicycles.
LAMPA encourages festival-goers to use public transportation to get to Cēsis – it’s better for the environment, it’s comfortable, it’s a fun way to travel with friends, and it’s also a great way to meet new people! In addition to its regular train schedule, our friends at AS “Pasažieru vilciens” will kindly provide the following extra train services between Riga and Cēsis:
June 28 from Cēsis to Riga
Departs: 23.45 Arrives: 01.32
June 29 from Riga to Cēsis
Departs: 08.55 Arrives: 10.43
June 30 from Cēsis to Riga
Departs: 00.32 Arrives: 02.19
For those who prefer the freedom and comfort of the automobile, festival parking will be available near the festival grounds at Niniera iela 14. However, space at this parking lot, as well as free parking space in Cēsis, is limited. It is possible that you will need to park further away from the festival grounds, but we invite you to look on the positive side and enjoy the walk! More parking space will be available at:
- Dzintara iela 3
- Valmieras iela 2 – the old market
- next to Noras iela 16 (across from the preschool)
- Uzvaras bulvāris 22 – Smilšu laukums (Smilšu Square)
LAMPA is an open festival, and we hope that the many positive feelings and inspiration generated by the free thoughts and candid conversations at the festival will at least in part compensate for the inconvenience caused by street closures in Cēsis related to the setup and taking down of the festival. The closures will only affect a couple of streets: Palasta iela from Lenču iela to Kanāla iela will be closed from 6 am on June 27 until 6 am on June 30; during this same time, Lenču iela will be restricted to one-way traffic heading away from Vienības laukums (Vienības Square).
In order to enjoy both festival days in a leisurely manner and be ready for more conversations after a refreshing night’s sleep, LAMPA offers accommodation at its campground free of charge. It is located near the festival grounds, in the yard of the Cēsis Centre for Children and Youth at Bišu iela 3. The campground will be open from 9 am on June 28 until 12 noon on June 30, so that even the most passionate conversationalists can get a good night’s sleep before heading home. Signs will mark the way to the festival grounds. Wristbands are required to enter the campground; these can be obtained at the campground registration desk. The campground will provide security (but do also keep an eye on your own belongings, just to be sure), general lighting, toilets and sinks. All you need to bring is a tent and sleeping bag!
In order to nourish not only our minds and spirits but also our bodies, the three food zones on the festival grounds will offer a wide variety of food and drink for sale. Vegetarian and vegan selections will also be available.
It’s summer and the weather can get hot, so don’t forget your water bottle at home. These can be refilled as needed from the three potable-water points on the festival grounds.
We want interesting conversations to be available to as wide an audience as possible, and therefore the festival map will indicate the barrier-free entrances to the festival grounds so that people in wheelchairs or with strollers can access the site. A special parking lot for people with reduced mobility will be available at Lenču iela 6.
Discussions on several stages will be translated into sign language. With the help of the Tilde Balss app, all discussions (in Latvian) on the “Dzirkstele” stage will be transcribed onto a special screen.
Large public events usually have a noticeable effect on the environment. This year LAMPA has resolved to lessen its environmental impact by implementing a deposit system for drinking cups. There will be a stall at each food zone where, for a EUR 3 deposit, visitors will receive a reusable plastic cup that can be filled with drinks from any beverage vendor. Used cups can be exchanged for clean ones at any vendor. When you are ready to leave the festival, return your cup to the deposit stall and the EUR 3 deposit will be returned to you. No other kinds of plastic cups will be used at the festival. We will also be carefully recycling waste and encourage LAMPA visitors to do the same and help up in this endeavour.
In an effort to reduce the amount of printed materials at the festival, this year’s festival programmes (which include a festival map) will be available for EUR 3 at all LAMPA information stands. You can also check the programme online.
All are welcome at LAMPA, no matter their age! As usual, “miniLAMPA” will offer a fun and exciting programme for children of various ages. In fact, miniLAMPA is a great opportunity for parents to spend quality time together with their children. A special area on the festival grounds will provide a private and quiet place to change diapers and nurse or feed your baby or young child.
LAMPA also offers the exciting Short Circuit (Īssavienojums) Youth Programme for older children and teens. It will feature conversations about topics that are of interest to young people as well as concerts, interactive activities and even a nighttime hike. For more information about the programme, see here (in Latvian).
The “Kā mājās” children’s centre (Maija iela 1, Cēsis) will offer professional childcare for children 18 months and older. If you already know that you want to take advantage of this service for your child, please notify the centre in advance by writing to [email protected] The centre will also accept drop-ins without prior reservation, but if the centre is full, parents may have to wait until a spot opens up. Children may stay at “Kā mājās” from one to four hours. The price is EUR 3 per hour.
LAMPA is open to all who respect the festival rules. We also welcome four-legged friends, as long as they are kept on a leash and know how to behave in public. We will appreciate it if you help keep the festival grounds clean and tidy after walking your dog.
See you at LAMPA!