A tree in the foreground with fairy lights, a neon sign saying FoW in the middle-ground, and an ice skating rink with people in the background.
BRIGHT LIGHTS The 2022 Festival of W was a huge success, leading to the event set to take place again in July 2023.

Events & Tourism

Festival of W line-up announced as destination winter event returns this July

Published: 19 May 2023 10:47am

A major visual and sound experience lighting up land and water locations in the heart of Wagga Wagga’s cultural precinct will be the main attraction of this year’s Festival of W event.

Featuring thousands of lights, the immersive visual experience will be “light no other” seen in Wagga Wagga or regional NSW before and is being curated by renowned Australian light art and visual design artists Mandylights.

The destination winter event will also feature a pop-up dining hub, entertainment and installations by local and national artists, the return of the popular outdoor ice rink and more.

Adults and children skating on an outdoor ice skating rink.
SKATING TIME The popular outdoor ice skating rink is returning for Festival of W in 2023.

Destination & Events Coordinator Kimberly Parker said this year’s 16-day festival, running from 1 July – 16 July, offers a full program with something to enjoy day and night.

“Festival of W, now in its second year, is about embracing and showcasing our city and region during the winter months, and this year’s program certainly delivers on this,” Ms Parker said.

“We’re so excited for audiences to witness the major drawcard light and sound experience, which has been inspired by our city’s natural environments, Wiradjuri culture and community stories.

“The immersive land and on-water light show will play from dusk to late each evening of the festival.

“Also coming to the festival this year is House of FoW – a cosy pop-up food and drink space showcasing local food offerings, fire buckets, live music, seating and heaters.

“We have a free, one-night-only special live music event on Saturday 8 July, with a line-up including Australian artists Sycco, Hatchie, Tom Snowdon, Muesli the band and Wagga Wagga-based DJ Vino and Vinyl.”

The Festival of W program has been curated over the past 12 months, including listening to feedback from festival-goers last year.

Two women standing in front of a projected artwork on the side of a building.
PROJECTED SUCCESS Projections by local artists will be part of Festival of W again this year.

Elements of the festival will also celebrate 2023 NAIDOC week, which will occur during the 16-day festival. Wiradjuri and First Nations programming has been included throughout the festival and will be experienced through art, performance, and food.

Festival of W is a Council led and managed event and this year has been supported by funding through the NSW Government’s Stronger Country Communities Fund and Community Events Program.

For further details about the festival, head to www.visitwagga.com/fow