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Festival of Lights 2024 “Arrival”

The space is at your fingertips! As a tribute to NASA's Artemis III mission to the Moon, the festival will reflect on key moments of space travel through art, science and technology.


Soon, NASA’s Artemis III launcher will land on the Moon: this will mark the first crewed lunar mission since 1972 and the first time in history that a woman will be walking on the Moon. In honour and celebration of humanity’s curiosity, the Festival of Lights will play out the key events of space travel: the landing, the opening of the horizon and the spacewalk. The festival stretches from Tõrvandi, Nõo and Tõravere over the horizon to Viitasaari municipality in Finland.


The tenth edition of the Festival of Lights will take place from 30 September to 6 October, this time dedicated to expanding the horizons and discovering new knowledge.

The festival will open with a large-scale sound and light installation “Touchdown – Coliseum”, created in cooperation with Latvian partners Story Hub and Those Guys Lightning on the territory of Tartu Airport and the Estonian Aviation Academy. This is a place normally only accessible to people in the aviation industry, but the festival gives everyone the chance to explore this new territory, just like astronauts. Does the new perspective create new opportunities or draw attention to pain points? An integral part of the artwork is the specially created music, into which composer Taavi Tulev fuses industrial flight sounds.

The space centre of the University of Tartu aka Tartu Observatory, in cooperation with the European Space Education Resource Office (ESERO), will open the horizon for school students at the career week “Beyond!”. In various workshops, scientists and entrepreneurs will be introducing exciting opportunities in space and engineering. The youth project will also include mini-performances in Tõravere by the dance club Triiniks and the dance school Just. The performances will be directed by students of the Danish Academy of Physical Education in Ollerup.

In the second half of the week we invite families in Nõo, Tõrvandi and Viitasaari to decorate their homes together. The community event unites different generations and offers creative pastimes, as well as bringing the twin municipalities Nõo and Viitasaari closer together.

The festival will culminate in an open-air dance performance by Külli Roosna and Kenneth Flak in Nõo. Called “Floating”, the performance explores the common language between art, science and technology.


The festival unites the people of Nõo, Kambja and Viitasaari, and brings unique events combining art and science to their home region. In addition, the festival draws attention to the next generation of aerospace professionals, as well as to Tartu Airport as a potential connection point with neighbouring countries.