Looking ahead to Rīga City Festival

The Rīga City festival will be held next weekend from August 14 to August 16, turning the city into a boiling pot of activity with concerts, workshops, exhibitions, street performances and sports events held throughout the celebration. Locals and visitors alike are welcomed to participate in the countless activities for grown-ups and children.

People visiting Riga should note that there'll be some traffic restrictions across the city. Public transportation will be free on August 15 and 16, though. More information will be available on the official website of the festival, also available in English. 

Events will be held at Vērmanes Dārzs, Doma Laukums, 11.Novembra krastmala, the Spīķeri Quarter, and in other locations, mostly around Rīga downtown.

Below is a non-exhaustive list of some events you may find worth your while. Note that events for children will be held throughout the festival as well, and visitors will also be able to attend markets & crafts booths and see a number of street performances.

Sports events

  • Sailing and rowing. A number of sailing and rowing competitions will take place on Daugava and in the Riga canal, including the Riga Cup and the Baltic Sail Nations cup. Do refer to the website to see what's good. 
  • 24-hour basketball tournament by the Opera House - Battle of the Riverbanks. Teams representing the two coasts of the Daugava river will duke it out by the Opera House, with a number of skill competitions held inbetween games. Starts at midnight on August 16.
  • Volleyball - sitting and beach volleyball tournaments will be held, and of particular interest is the Lucavsala beach volleyball cup where 24 men's and 12 women's teams will duke it out all day on August 14 and August 15. Apply with your own team until August 10.

Exhibitions

  • The international textile mosaic exhibition Summer of Riga - personal exhibitions as well as textile ties from Lithuania and a collection by the students of the Latvian Academy of Arts will show what's trendy in textiles. The exhibition will be open the whole festival at Riga Cultural Centre „Iļģuciems”, Lidoņu iela 27, k-2. 
  • Latvian Soul Patterns - See and hear how Latvian national costumes (from 24 regions) have interplayed The exhibition is a story about the development of traditions of the Latvian Song and Dance Festival, about building nation’s self-confidence and the national costume as one of the forms of expressing nation’s self-confidence. The exhibition will be held at the Riga Art Space Exhibition Hallopen on all festival days.
  • Osvalds Zvejsalnieks. Latgale en plein air painting - during the city festival, the Riga St. Peter’s Church will be home to an exhibition of a study of the churches and landscapes of the tranquil Latgale region. The exhibition is a collectively created exposition of several artists, where the nature, churches, cathedrals, colorful towns, and the still lives of Latgale are reflected.

Concerts

  • Around the World in 8150 Seconds - the „Riga" Professional Brass Band will kick off the festival with port songs from all around the world, marking the 815th anniversary of the establishment of the Riga port. August 14 at 20:30 - 23:00 at Vērmanes dārzs.

  • Rīga Funk Fest - held at the trendy Spīķeri not far from the Rīga Central Market, the Riga Funk Fest 2015 will show you how funk is treated in Latvia, featuring some awesome surprises, like a funk performance with a wind instrument section. Five Latvian bands and Lithuanian guests Gin’Gas will take the stage on August 15 at 20:00 - 02:00.

  • The festival will culminate on August 16 at 19:00 with a performance of Russian rock giants Bi-2 at the Mežaparks open-air stage.

Below is a map (partially translated) of the events. 

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