Guidelines for Private Events at Historic Oakland Cemetery

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The Historic Oakland Foundation, Inc. (hereinafter referred to as HOF) partners with the City of Atlanta to preserve, restore, enhance, and share Oakland Cemetery with the public as an important cultural resource and an island of tranquility in the heart of the city. Oakland welcomes the opportunity to expand our efforts and increase the awareness of the cemetery by allowing private events use of Oakland by individuals and groups (hereinafter referred to as the Client). Partisan political events are not allowed. City of Atlanta permitting requirements must be followed.

Event Areas and Time Frames:

  • The HOF reserves the right to determine which areas may be used for food and drink service and where such services may be set up. By City Ordinance, smoking is not permitted anywhere on Oakland grounds.
  • Approved evening rentals must end by midnight with any load out completed by 2 a.m. There will be a charge of $500 per hour for additional hours added to the end of the contracted event period ending after midnight, with load out ending after 2:00 a.m.
  • Two hours of set up time prior to the beginning of an event are scheduled for set up. There is an additional charge of $175 per hour for any additional set up hours.
  • There are additional fees for approved events held on major holidays. No events will be approved on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day or New Year’s Day.
  • Any student events must be school-sponsored and must provide appropriate chaperones.

Hold Policy

  • A date can be placed on courtesy hold for two weeks. If another client wants to contract the same venue on the same date, the first client on hold will be given two days to request a contract and pay a deposit to exclusively reserve the date. Otherwise, the date will be forfeited to the second client.
  • To hold a date exclusively, 50% of the rental amount will be deposited and a signed contract will be due to the HOF within five (5) days of receipt of the deposit. A credit card number is required to guarantee the event when the client pays by cash or check.

Payment Schedule:

  • A deposit of 50% of the total amount and a signed contract are due within five business days of receiving the contract. The remaining 50% is due 30 days prior to the event.
  • Any additional charges are due 30 days prior to the event. Any adjustments will be invoiced following the event and any additional payments are due within 30 days of the invoice.
  • Cancellation of an event will result in the forfeiture of 10% of the contracted amount.

Final Walk Through:

  • A walk-through with all involved parties (Client plus vendors) is required at least three weeks in advance of the event.
  • Any changes to the original plan are due to the HOF by no later than three (3) business days prior to the event.

Inclement Weather:

  • Except for events held in the Oakland Bell Tower, all Oakland events are scheduled outside and should include plans for inclement weather. No refunds are made for events because of weather conditions.

Tents:

  • The HOF has approved vendors for setting up tents on Oakland Cemetery grounds. Vendors not on the approved list must submit a copy of their business license and proof of liability insurance. The Client is responsible for securing a tenting permit from the City of Atlanta and providing the HOF with a copy of the permit in advance. Set up and break down times for a tent must be approved by Oakland one month prior to your event and are to be considered outside the normal set up/tear down times.

Parking:

  • The HOF offers 50 free non-secured parking spaces for events, both inside the Oakland gates and in a small lot adjacent to the entrance to Oakland. It is recommended that security be provided for the lot outside the gates. This can be arranged as part of your contract with Oakland. In no case is the City of Atlanta or the HOF responsible for automobile security.

Security:

  • General security officers will be on duty from setup through breakdown. These general security costs are included with the rental fee.
  • The HOF reserves the right to require and schedule the services of off-duty police officers. Officers will be required for events where over 200 people are in attendance and/or where there is amplified music. The Client is responsible for paying for these additional security needs.
  • For any student event, one (1) chaperone for every 25 students attending is required. The chaperone(s) must be adults over 21 years of age, and must be the teachers, parents, or administrative personnel from the school of attending students.

Decorations:
Because we are a Nationally Registered Historic Area, we must put the protection of our grounds and artifacts first to allow for the enjoyment of future generations. The Client is responsible for all decorations and special effects for the event within the following guidelines:

  • Unless specifically approved by the HOF, all decorations and signs must be freestanding and cannot be hung on the walls of any buildings or on monuments.
  • Flames must be contained. The flame must be below the top of the glass container.
  • Pyrotechnics, confetti cannons, or rice are not permitted.
  • Unless specifically approved by the HOF, items cannot block any streets or paths.
  • Unless prearranged, all items must be removed from the premises immediately following the event.
  • Touch-up painting of decor items is not permitted on the property. Building of decor items onsite must be pre-approved.

Printed Materials:

  • The HOF is not obligated to display or distribute any materials relating to a rental event, or to publicize the event in any of the HOF’s printed or online materials.
  • The HOF logo may not be used on materials relating to any rental event without prior approval from the Foundation.

Music:

  • There is a City of Atlanta Noise ordinance curfew for outdoor music. A police officer must be hired for any event with amplified music. The Client must abide by the private event manager’s and police officer’s request for the volume of the music to be adjusted to meet the noise ordinance curfew.

Photography:

  • Photography in any public spaces with the cemetery will be available unless such space is rented by another Client.

Rental Equipment:

  • Rentals must be delivered the day of the event and picked up immediately following the event unless other arrangements have been pre-approved. Please schedule all deliveries and pickups through the Private Events Coordinator.

Other

  • We require that at least one portable toilet be reserved for parties of 100 or more, as our in-house bathrooms cannot accommodate a lot of traffic. We will book the portalet for an overall fee of $100 per standard unit. Also, we will require an additional portalet for each additional 100 guests.

Additional Guidelines for Outside Vendors:
The Client may retain a Vendor from the Foundation’s list of approved Vendors. The Foundation must approve Vendors not on its approved list. All vendors must provide:

  • Proof of workmen’s compensation and liability insurance for their employees.
  • Business License.
  • For caterers: certification by the Health Department.
  • Certificate of Liability insurance with the Foundation named as additionally insured.
  • All vendors should promptly report any issue they encounter with our venue or our staff so that we may address the issue and better meet the satisfaction level expected by clients and vendors.
  • Vendors and/or clients will be notified about costs for any unusual cleaning requirements or damage should any such damage occur.

Caterers must comply with the following additional rules:

  • Load in can occur during specified agreed upon time and location.
  • All catering staff should park in a previously designated area.
  • Caterers are responsible for unloading, setting up, and reloading their goods.
  • Caterers must check with the Foundation Private Events Coordinator upon arrival and check out with the Coordinator before leaving.
  • Breakdown must occur immediately after the event. This includes the removal of all trash, used dishware and other perishables from the premises.
  • Caterers must provide their own trash receptacles and garbage bags. All trash must be taken off site. The Foundation does not have an on-site dumpster for catering use.
  • No kitchen is available for outdoor events. A small kitchen is available for events held in the Foundation’s Conference Room or on the porch of the Bell Tower.
  • Caterers must provide a fire extinguisher for each table with flame-producing units.
  • The Foundation does not have outside lighting. It is the responsibility of the caterer to bring the necessary equipment to provide adequate lighting for its staff during outside events.
  • All ice must be disposed of properly. Ice cannot be disposed of on lawns or in flower beds.

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