Thank you for your interest in holding your event at Duke Chapel!
Use of the Duke Chapel sanctuary, basement rooms, or outdoor Chapel Quad (including the Chapel steps) must be approved in advance. The Chapel is expected to be used “as-is” without obscuring its architecture and fixtures. If you have any questions please call 919-681-9488 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
*** Requests for weddings, funerals, baptisms, tours, and tower climbs are handled through separate processes. Groups not part of Duke University should contact us about event reservation fees and terms. ***
Please read all of the information below and fill out the entire form. We plan to review your request promptly. Please do not assume your event is approved until you receive written confirmation with a specific date and time for your reservation, as well as the name of a Chapel staff person who will be your main point of contact. Priority will be given to Duke groups holding events in line with the mission of the Chapel and the aims of the university. We attempt to accommodate requests made far in advance while also holding open times for events that are typically planned with less notice such as vigils, memorials, baptisms, and student Religious Life services. All requests are subject to the availability of the Chapel.
*** All event reservations are subject to cancelation/rescheduling at the discretion of the Dean of the Chapel. ***
Event Organizer Responsibilities
Please read carefully all of these responsibilities so that your event will go well for you, those who attend, and others who use the Chapel.
*** In order to complete your event request, you must provide an electronic signature in the box indicating that you have read and agree to all of the Event Organizer Responsibilities. ***
A/V—The Chapel has a built-in sound, light, and video system, which may only be operated by Chapel staff or Duke Technical Services. Most events in the nave will require amplified sound. Some custom stage lighting is available upon request. Video recording, webcasting, and overflow video is also available. The event organizer is responsible for obtaining all necessary permissions for anything that is broadcast, webcast, recorded, or presented. There is limited wifi coverage in the nave, so wireless devices will not work reliably. Please contact Duke Technical Services with your specific AV needs. They will provide an estimate of cost and time. Contact: 919-660-1731 and email@example.com.
Building Access—Access to the building is available only during open hours. Everyone involved with an event, including those doing clean-up, must leave by closing time. There are no public restrooms in the Chapel; the nearest ones are in Page Auditorium and the Divinity School. There is no public access to the Chapel tower, triforium, or other areas outside of the public spaces on the main level (narthex, nave, Memorial Chapel, and crypt). Basement access is limited to the Duke community and those on Duke business or attending an approved event. Only authorized Duke staff on work business may access other areas of the Chapel.
Cancelations—If you need to cancel/reschedule your event, please let us know as soon as possible. Also, all event reservations are subject at any time to cancelation/rescheduling by the Chapel at the discretion of the Dean.
Candles—Existing altar candles are available for use in their current location. Any other use of candles must be requested and reviewed.
Clean-Up—The event organizer is responsible for returning the Chapel to the condition in which it was found. This includes returning chairs and all other furniture to their original position, picking up materials left behind, removing floral arrangements, and returning Chapel equipment. Recyclable materials must be disposed of in the recycling bins next to the basement entrance closest the Bryan Center. Any costs the Chapel incurs related to an event for repairs, cleaning, replacing equipment, or other reasons will be charged to the fund code of the event organizer.
Crowd Management—Please have a plan for crowd management, including how people will be seated and how they will leave especially in an emergency situation. The event organizer must be onsite to give crowd management instructions. Capacity limits for all Chapel rooms/spaces must be respected (see above). Aisles and exits must be kept clear at all times, and all other fire code policies must be followed. For events with anticipated attendance of 500 or more, it is required to have certified crowd management personnel from Duke Theater Operations, Staff-1, or a similar group. Audiences of 1,000 or more must be staffed by at least four certified crowd management personnel. Public events with an anticipated attendance of 800 or more must be ticketed (the tickets can be free; see below). A seating map of the Chapel is available upon request. Overflow seating can be arranged in other campus venues as they are available through Duke Theater Operations.
Equipment/Furniture/Decorations—Event organizers may use basic event-related equipment and decorations at the Chapel, such as chairs, podiums, music stands, easels, floral arrangements, and small tables. For use of liturgical items—such as candles, altar vestments, and albs—as well as any instruments, please make a request to your Chapel contact person.
Fees—There is no fee for university groups to use the Chapel; however, any costs for repairs, clean-up, equipment replacement or other reasons related to an event will be charged to the event organizer. Outside groups should contact us about space rental fees.
Food and Drink—No food or drink is allowed in the nave. Exceptions are made for performers and for health reasons. Food is allowed in the narthex and the basement; however, provisions must be made for waste disposal and clean-up.
Handicap Access—Please review Duke Disability Management’s event planning information. Please have a plan for seating people with physical disabilities and for accommodating people with other disabilities. The Chapel has wheelchair access at the main level through a ramp leading into the transept facing the Divinity School. Basement access is through the double doors facing the Bryan Center. The closest handicap-accessible bathroom is next door in the Divinity School. Some ADA parking is available in the Bryan Center Surface Lot.
Music and Organs—The Chapel is optimal for choral and organ music. While it is possible to perform other types of music, not all music conveys well given the building’s highly reverberant acoustics. If you are planning to perform/host music in the Chapel for the first time, we recommend that you consult with your Chapel contact person. The event organizer is responsible for obtaining all necessary permissions to perform specific pieces of music. If you would like to request permission to use one of the Chapel’s organs, or to invite a Chapel choir to participate in your event, or to consult with a Chapel musician about other music plans, please contact Chapel Music at firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-684-3898.
Outdoor Events—For events on the Chapel Quad, including the Chapel steps, please contact Duke Event Services if you need to arrange for tents, a podium, trash cans (required when serving food), or sound amplification. If you plan to use any of these services, please indicate that in the event form (see above).
Policies—All university policies and behavior expectations for faculty, staff, students, and others apply for events at the Chapel.
Printed Programs—Event organizers are responsible for providing and distributing any programs/bulletins/printed materials. Please make sure to pick up any leftover materials after your event.
Security/EMS—Plans for security and EMS are highly recommended for large events, and may be required for certain events. If you have questions, please contact Duke Police.
Setup—The Chapel is primarily meant to be used “as-is” with limited decorations and no changes that would obscure its architecture or fixtures. The event organizer is responsible for coordinating all setup and must be present during the allotted setup time. Setup includes arranging chairs, distributing microphones (see above about AV), providing any printed materials, and placing decorations. Aisles and exits must be kept clear at all times. Please note that chairs and other equipment may not be stored in Memorial Chapel. If chairs need to be moved offsite and/or heavy equipment brought in (such as concert risers), you are required to use a moving company such as DeHaven’s or TROSA.
Student Groups—Student groups must follow all relevant event policies from Student Affairs.
Tickets—To arrange for ticketing for an event, please contact the Duke Box Office. Ticketing is required for public events when 800 or more people are expected to attend; the Duke Box Office has an option for free tickets, if that is desired. Before selling tickets, please consult with us about the maximum number of tickets you can sell, as seating capacity can vary based on the setup for the event. For all ticket events, the Chapel reserves 10 tickets for its staff and constituents.
Visitor Desk Support—A Chapel visitor relations staff member will be present at the front desk in the nave. Please plan to check-in with this person as soon as you arrive and go over any relevant event details. The visitor relations person can give basic directions to members of the public about restrooms, event times, building history, etc., but is not the primary person for crowd management and/or event logistics.
Walk-Through—You are welcome to schedule with your Chapel contact person a walk-through of the building to assist in your planning. If you have not previously held an event in the Chapel, you must schedule a walk-through in advance of your event.