Get Involved

Doors Open is a great opportunity to meet new people while supporting architectural heritage in Waterloo Region.

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Volunteer opportunities are available for individuals to:

  • Lead tours of the featured buildings
  • Greet visitors
  • Count the total number of visitors
  • Photograph the event
  • Animate a site with music, theatre or children's activities

Free training and orientation, including information on the history of your assigned building, is provided. We require a four-hour commitment on the day of the event.

And if you are a member of a local arts, heritage or service organization, consider volunteering as a group. We will do our best to place your group at one location, or at locations close to each other.

Contact Doors Open co-ordinators for information on volunteering.

Be a photographer, blogger, social media or podcast journalist for Doors Open Waterloo Region!!

Introduce people to YOUR favourite Doors Open site, on or before Doors Open. Scope out any sites you would like to photograph/capture in a podcast/write about in your blog/tweet about. Pick which sites you would like to cover, and let us know. If you are free on the third Saturday of September, we would love it if you could also capture images/footage of visitors enjoying Doors Open sites!

Why blog/podcast/tweet/photograph for Doors Open?

  • advance access to normally-closed-to-the-public, 'secret' Doors Open sites
  • exclusive interviews with our Doors Open site owners/operators
  • link to Doors Open Ontario's province-wide website
  • meet other bloggers/podcast journalists/photographers in real time at our Doors Open networking event
  • connect with journalists working in traditional media in Waterloo Region
  • tell the world about the stories that make our 'secret' Doors Open sites interesting!
  • Your podcasts/photos/blog entries would be featured prominently on our Doors Open blog (with links from our Facebook page).
  • Following the event, some of your photos/podcast entries/blog entries would be featured on the Region of Waterloo's Doors Open blog and Facebook page.
  • Your photos/podcasts could be forwarded to the Ontario Heritage Trust, to be used in their province-wide publication (distributed in the Globe & Mail), or used on the Doors Open Ontario website.

If you are interested in being a volunteer photographer/blogger/podcast journalist with Doors Open Waterloo Region, please confirm with Jane Snyder or Karl Kessler at 519-747-5139 or at

Thank you for your interest in Doors Open Waterloo Region!

Call for arts and heritage organizations! Get involved with Doors Open Waterloo Region!

Doors Open Waterloo Region, a free heritage and architecture tour, is looking for arts and heritage organizations to provide programming at various sites across Waterloo Region for Doors Open.

We are looking for music, drama performances, crafts for children, workshops/lectures, information displays, etc. that will enrich our visitors' experience during Doors Open.

Doors Open sites are located all across Waterloo Region (but a few of the sites are better suited to host live performances). Our event takes place on the third Saturday of September (most of our sites will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.)

As Doors Open is a free event, the performance must be presented gratis; however, you are free to sell tickets to upcoming shows, memberships, etc. before or after your performance.

If you are interested, please email or call 519-747-5139 by July 15, and we will match your organization with a Doors Open site.

Fun for all ages


Children and teens can learn more about local history courtesy of Waterloo Region authors. Browse this booklist to get started. Some stories, such as Nancy-Lou Patterson's The Tramp Room, take place right in Waterloo Region. (The Tramp Room has the Joseph Schneider Haus Museum as its base). The booklist was compiled by Laura Reed, Co-ordinator of Children's & Teen Services at Kitchener Public Library.

Adults have their own list of books on this area's history, also written by local authors. The list was compiled by Karen Ball-Pyatt, Local History Librarian at Kitchener Public Library.


The Doors Open Waterloo Region map/guide (available each year in July) is a good teaching tool and has been featured in English as a Second Language (ESL) adult education classes across Waterloo Region. Learning themes include map use, transit routes and city and/or regional planning.

Contact us by email in mid-June or through the summer for copies of the map/guides for your classroom.

Under age 12 with a story to share?

If you are under the age of 12, do you have a story connected to a Doors Open site? Did you do a pond study at Laurel Creek Nature Centre in Waterloo, or climb Pioneer Tower in Kitchener? Email us your story and we'll post it here.

Photo contest

Calling all photographers! Become an official Doors Open volunteer photographer and submit your images to the annual Doors Open photo contest.  Email our co-ordinators for more information.

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