LUMA calling out for more volunteers

by Lauren Pattemore - May 15, 2024

Queenstown's large light festival LUMA will start setting up in ten days and organisers have put out a call for more volunteers to help run it.

LUMA trustee Tim Buckley says the event, which takes over Queenstown Gardens to coincide with King's Birthday Weekend, requires a lot volunteers.

Mr Buckley says they are "really lucky" with the support they get from the community. 

"There is a good core group of people who have come from the beginning and have grown in different roles, where they are now managing other volunteers."

Mr Buckley says volunteering, or LUMA-teering, can also be popular with newcomers or visitors to town, who want to build their own networks and socialise, as well as the longer-term locals, who understand the value of the event and want to help out.

He says the organising team always gets great feedback from its volunteers after the event.

On the LUMA website, volunteers are being asked to fill a variety of tasks, including set up, kitchen hands, ticketing, front of house, glassies, marshals, merchandisers and "pixie disco" performers. 

As for festival goers in general, Mr Buckley is advising anyone wanting to attend the event on the Saturday night to book tickets early, because it sold out last year and people were turned away. 

He says he's "reasonably optimistic" about sales this year, and they've sold just slightly more than they had this time last year.

"Every year is an evolution...we are always changing things that have worked in the past, so we are not resting on our laurels."

The festival has been running since 2016 and Mr Buckley likes that it has brought a reason for people to come out and celebrate what was generally a slow long weekend before the ski tourism started.

"King's Birthday weekend was always quiet and there was no real sense of any celebration to bring an official start to winter."

Volunteers, or LUMA-teers, can sign up on the website here. 

This year LUMA will run from Thursday, May 30 until Monday, June 3.

Main image (Facebook/LUMA Queenstown/Tomás Mácha): Performers all decked out at LUMA 2023.

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