Press Release – Gelsenkirchen Germany – After the successful premiere in 2018, the second edition of Germany‘s first, largest and freely accessible festival for Virtual Reality (VR) will follow in May 2020. The Places _ VR Festival will once again attract thousands of people to Gelsenkirchen, in the middle of the Metropole Ruhr, from 14 to 16 May 2020.

In May next year, Gelsenkirchen will become the stage for the Virtual Reality scene from all over Europe, for the second time. Centrally located in Germany‘s largest conurbation – the Ruhr Area – the Places_Virtual Reality Festival once again offers both a public and a professional audience the chance to experience the latest developments of this future-oriented technology. Startups, universities and established companies in the national and international VR industry will not only receive a platform for networking, which is unique in Germany, but also receive direct feedback on their applications from potential users.

This time, the Places_Virtual Reality Festival is an event of the City of Gelsenkirchen. In 2020 and 2021 it is funded by the Ministry of Economics, Innovation, Digitization and Energy of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia as part of the project „Digital Model Region Gelsenkirchen“. With these financial resources, the festival will grow structurally and in terms of content. The Gelsenkirchen-based mxr storytelling UG is responsible for the concept and its implementation.

Some of the successful elements from 2018 will be joined by new ones in 2020. The core of the festival will again be the program item „Experience _ Places“. During the entire second and third day, the festival‘s program partners will present their applications at different and unusual locations throughout the Gelsenkirchen- Ückendorf district. Along the Bochumer Straße there, in the open sense of a „street festival“, places such as the Science Park Gelsenkirchen, but also shops, pubs or even vacant buildings will become venues for a wide variety of VR applications, which can be tested free of charge and with free access.

„In addition to Virtual Reality applications from the fields of entertainment and gaming, this year‘s festival will focus on ‚Meaningful VR‘,“ says co-organizer Matthias Krentzek, managing director of mxr UG. „After the initial hype about VR, we want to shed light on which applications in which areas will really make sense in the future, and have a social relevance. One of the program partners is the Robert Enke Foundation, which is presenting a VR application to raise awareness for the topic of clinical depression.

For the technically oriented audience, there will be workshops, lectures or a 24-hour hackathon over the entire three days of the festival, in which people from the industry, from universities or from completely different professional branches will develop new Virtual Reality applications in an interdisciplinary way. Of particular interest for founders from the field of VR is a „Startup Pitch“, where they have the opportunity to present their ideas to investors.

Press Release 06.02.2020

A project of:

Sponsored by: Concept & Organization:

mxr storytelling
Bochum Str. 140-142
45886 Gelsenkirchen

The realest Virtual Reality Event in the world

Developers of different types of Virtual Reality technologies still have the chance to participate at the festival:

For more details you can also visit our English website:

If you have any questions or requests for interviews, photos or filming dates for your reporting, please feel free to contact our press officer Roman Milenski at +49 / 173 / 24 70 389 or

About Places _ Virtual Reality Festival

Places is Germany‘s first, largest and freely accessible festival for Virtual Reality, which takes place in the middle of the Ruhr area – in Gelsenkirchen. From 14 – 16 May, everything revolves around the topic of Virtual Reality in Central Europe‘s largest conurbation for both trade and public audiences. And not just anywhere in an exhibition hall, but along an entire street. With its extraordinary locations, the urban development area Bochumer Straße in Gelsenkirchen-Ückendorf will become a festival stage. Between urban old-building charme and modern facilities such as the Science Park Gelsenkirchen, between curb and backyards, in shops, apartments, art studios, pubs, in vacant lots, some of which are in need of renovation, virtual meets actual reality, and creators meet consumers. At the Places _ Virtual Reality Festival, innovations from the trendsetting Virtual Reality technology can be experienced by everyone free of charge.

The first edition of the festival took place in April 2018 in 18 locations with 30 Experience Stations with different VR applications, and an additional professional program. About 2000 visitors from all over Germany experienced the Gelsenkirchen-Ückendorf district from new perspectives. In 2020 and 2021, the Places _ Virtual Reality Festival is a project of the City of Gelsenkirchen‘s Economic Development Department, funded by the Ministry of Economics, Innovation, Digitization and Energy of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia as part of the Gelsenkirchen Digital Model Region. The concept and its implementation is in the hands of the Gelsenkirchen-based mxr storytelling UG.

Contact Roman Milenski 0173 / 24 70 389


Sean Earley is the Executive Editor of AR/VR Magazine & co-founder of RobotSpaceship Podcast Network. He is the Director of New Biz Development and Publishing at KEMWEB, a musician, producer & consultant. He loves guitars, VR and coffee.