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Zero Waste Festival – Frequently Asked Questions, and more!


The first ever Zero Waste Festival is less than one week away!

We are incredibly thrilled to be putting on the first ever Zero Waste Festival in Guelph, Ontario! As the recipients of a 2018 Ontario Trillium Foundation Seed Grant, we have been privileged to offer a whole year of exciting and engaging workshops and sessions with a focus on low-waste living and sustainable practices. These workshops have been held in our tool library, and at offsite spaces like the Guelph Farmer’s Market, the Guelph Public Library, 10C Shared space, and even in the neighborhood tent at Hillside Festival. The Zero Waste Festival came together as a way of culminating what we have learned and shared, and presenting is to as many community members as possible, at a thrilling one-day event.

If you haven’t RSVP’d yet, head on over to Eventbrite, and let us know you’re coming. The day will boast a jam-packed schedule of repairing, sharing, and learning at a whole host of ticketed and drop-in events.

Got more questions? Check our FAQ Section!


What are the festival hours?

The Zero Waste Festival will open to the public at 10 am, and will remain open until 5 pm. The lobby will open for registration purposes at 9:45 am, to allow guests to confirm the time and location of any workshops or sessions they are attending. 

The Repair Cafe will run from 10 am-1pm, and the CSA Bike Centre Repair Station (located outside) will run from 10 am-2pm.

Is the Zero Waste Festival Free? 

The event is by donation. There is no cost to attend the vendor fair, or any other events taking place in the outdoor areas, or in the arena, including drop-in workshops, or the Repair Cafe.  Donations will always be happily accepted by our volunteers (look for the bright green aprons!). Ticketed workshops are by donation, and should be purchased ahead of time to ensure adequate space is available. 

What’s the difference between “ticketed” and “drop-in” sessions?

Ticketed events have a limited number of spaces available per session. Pre-registration for these events is required, with admission by donation via Eventbrite, or in person at the Guelph Tool Library during our regular hours. Guests are asked to make a contribution in exchange for a ticket (suggested donation of $5-$15). This helps cover the cost of the workshops held for this event, and any additional funds acquired will aid our workshop budget in the upcoming fiscal year. Any remaining spots for these classes will be available first come, first serve on August 10th at the Guest Services table, located at the main entrance.

Drop-in sessions take place in the arena, and pre-registration is not required. Guests are accepted on a first-come, first serve basis, and all workshops are while quantities last.

How do I sign up for a ticketed workshop or talk?

When you select an Early Bird Ticket ($25), Golden Ticket ($35) or single workshop or talk (by donation) on Eventbrite, you will be sent a survey to fill out with the session(s) of your choice. Please fill one out for each registrant in your party. In the days before the festival, we will send out itineraries to each attendee – check your spam folder for any incoming communications from our festival organizers. We will also inform everyone if any workshops or sessions become more than 90% sold out. 

Do I need to print my ticket?

No! In an effort to keep this event as low-waste as possible, please don’t print your ticket. You can download your e-tickets and schedule to your phone if you are bringing one. All attendees for ticketed sessions should check in at Guest Services, right at the upper-level main entrance to verify the time and location of the session. Site maps and schedules will be available on-site, printed on rescued paper!

What should I bring?

Guests should bring their reusable water bottles (no packaged water will be sold on site). The Water Wagon will be located outside offering free water refills, and there are water fountains located in the arena, and on the lower level. Please also remember to bring a reusable bag to take home your purchases and projects, and reusable containers for food and bulk refill purchases. We will have spare containers for bulk refill available if you’re looking to start your own Zero Waste home. All food vendors are provided with reusable dishes, cutlery, and cups (generously offered from Hillside Festival). We have four food vendors on offer, but it’s always a good idea to pack some snacks or a picnic. There are plenty of spaces indoors and outside to stop and have lunch or a snack. 

Most importantly, bring a positive attitude and an open mind! The Zero Waste Festival is designed to be a learning experience for all involved. 

How early should I arrive if I have signed up for a workshop or talk? 

Please arrive to the location of your workshop or talk at least five minutes early. This will allow the assistant to take attendance, and give everyone time to get settled so that the workshop can begin on time. 

Is the space accessible? Are there gender neutral washrooms available? 

The Victoria Road Rec Centre is fully accessible. There are accessible parking spaces located at the upper and lower entrances. The upper entrance, where guest services is located, is adjacent to the elevator that will take guests up to the second floor classrooms (Willow and Cedar rooms), and down to the Oak Room. The arena is on the same level as the upper entrance, and the arena doors are equipped with ramps for accessibility. 

Gender neutral, accessible washrooms are located on the lower level, near the lower entrance doors. Other washrooms are located on the main floor. 

What’s the parking/transit situation?

The Victoria Road Rec Centre is equipped with ample free parking. Due to the nature of this festival, we encourage guests to use public or active transportation, or to carpool where possible. The VRRC is located on the #13 bus route which departs from Guelph Central Station, and is a short walk from the #17/#18 routes that services the North, West, East, and South ends of town. There is ample bike parking on site, and free bike maintenance, safety checks, and advice will be available from the CSA Bike Centre and Repair Cafe Volunteer team from 10 am-2pm, on the lawn by the lower bike racks.

Is the space family friendly?

YES! There will be hands-on games and activities at the Water Wagon and the City of Guelph booths, as well as many kid friendly vendors and drop-in sessions. Our ticketed workshops may run a bit long for young ones, and all ticketed workshop attendees must be pre-registered, regardless of age, due to the size constraints of the classrooms. On the front lawn of the Victoria Road Rec Centre, there is a large play space with room to run around and blow off steam!

What about my dog/cat/gerbil/bird/snake etc?

While we love all critters – and we want pets to live sustainably, too, only humans and service animals are permitted at the Zero Waste Festival. Please leave your furry/feathered/scaled etc friends at home.   


If you have any other questions regarding the Zero Waste Festival, please contact us at