Consistent with its mission, Albany UU rents its spaces for community use. We encourage organizations and individuals engaged in non-commercial or educational activities to use our facilities. (This excludes purely fundraising endeavors for profit-making entities.) We open our facilities to the wider community in the hopes of sharing our welcoming space with renters.
Our facilities can accommodate a variety of special events, from concerts and weddings to theatrical performances and nonprofit fundraisers. Community groups may rent rooms for individual meetings, or on a monthly basis for various support groups. Teachers often rent our space to give workshops, and organizations hold trainings, meetings and off-site retreats.
Weddings and receptions have a choice of rooms, as well as the freedom to do it their way! We honor the love and commitment of all couples, regardless of their religious background or sexual orientation. Couples who use our space are free to write their own vows, observe their own unique religious traditions, and hire any clergy person they choose to officiate.
Our Sanctuary is known for its excellent acoustics, and has a baby grand piano and a Carlson organ. Built in 1925 in the Colonial style, the Sanctuary has a barrel vault ceiling and tall, arched windows. The room is light and airy in the day, and glows softly at night. Up to 190 people can be seated in the cushioned pews, plus another 14 in the choir pews at the front right. It has a Bose sound system for speakers and recorded music. Food and beverages are not permitted in this space.
Entering from the columned portico, one first enters a vestibule, and from there goes into the Sanctuary facing the chancel. The room is 30 feet wide and 52 feet long. The chancel is raised two feet, and is 16 feet wide at the front, 11.5 feet wide at the back, and 8.5 feet deep, with a moveable pulpit and a door to the sound room. The organ loft is located over the entry vestibule, and has enough space to accommodate several musicians or a photographer/videographer.
Emerson Community Hall
Emerson Community Hall is housed in the wing opened in September 2007, and is a modern contrast to the 1925 Sanctuary. This space can seat about 300 people in flexible seating for concerts or lectures, and is also suitable for dances and wedding receptions. A balcony above seats 42. It is wide and open with soaring ceilings, yet retains an intimate feel because of the warm wood flooring and natural materials. The hall has excellent acoustics, a Steinway piano, a sound system, and a wheelchair lift for access to the stage. With easy access to the pantry, kitchen, and lobby, it also has an adjacent area for refreshments. It can be used for any combination of wedding ceremony, reception, dinner, or dancing.
Channing Hall, located between the sanctuary and the Religious Education/Administration wing, is 30 by 45 feet, and has a hardwood floor suitable for dancing. This social space can seat 100 for a meal, or 150 lecture-style in flexible seating. It has a sound system, and connects to the pantry, kitchen, and lobby. One end has a south-facing bay window and comfortable seating; the other has large panels on which art shows are displayed throughout the year.
Mix and Match
You can use one, two, or all three spaces. For example, have the ceremony in the Sanctuary, the receiving line in Channing Hall, and dinner in Emerson Hall. Or the ceremony in the Sanctuary, the dinner in Channing Hall, and dancing in Emerson Hall. We can work with you to create the perfect package! All wedding packages include free use of the service space for a rehearsal.
We have Classrooms which can be used for meetings or support groups. Two rooms have sofas, while others have tables and chairs. The small rooms can seat 5-15 people, the large 15-25 people.
The Kitchen is available for preparing coffee and tea, for the serving of brought-in food, and for meal preparation. Rental of the kitchen does not include use of the churchâ€™s dishes, glassware or cutlery. The kitchen has stainless steel work surfaces, a commercial range, oven and top broiler, a clean sink area, and a scullery area with commercial dishwasher.
HOW TO RENT SPACE AT ALBANY UU:
Contact the Church Administrator at (518) 463-7135, or email@example.com.To get a sense of whether the space you want is available on your date, please check the Detailed Event Schedule LINK to ChurchDB public calendar.
The rental process begins with an application. The Church Administrator will work with you to define your eventâ€™s needs and appropriateness for our facility. If the decision is made to proceed, a contract will be prepared. Once the renter signs the contract, provides a certificate of insurance, and pays the requested deposit, the event will be placed on the church calendar.
All first-time renters, those holding large events and as well as those who need assistance with AV set-up will be assigned a Building Host. Smaller and repeating events are typically issued a building key and are responsible for letting in their own guests.
All renters will be asked to provide a certificate of insurance naming this church as Additional Insured.Renters wishing to serve alcohol must acquire a Special Event Permit from the NYS Liquor Authority. Security deposits are required for first-time renters and large events, and may be required for smaller events depending on risk assessment. Security deposits will be returned in full, except for cases when the event damages our property, or entails extra cleaning.
Events serving food will be charged, at a minimum, the carry-in food fee. Higher levels of kitchen use are calculated accordingly. Renters are requested to comply with our trash, recycling and composting plan. We have no restrictions on what caterer you can use, and also allow you to bring your own food. (Caterers must provide a certificate of insurance.)
An application form as well as detailed information on pricing, rental restrictions, room descriptions, certificate of insurance, and alcohol permits can be found here LINK.
DONATION OF RENTAL SPACE
On limited occasions during the year, Albany UU donates the use of its facilities to nonprofit organizations with limited funding. The Albany UU Social Responsibilities Council may approve a donation to an organization for a meeting or event that will provide a service to the community consistent with the following focus areas:
- Making a difference in the lives of children and families in the city of Albany.
- Becoming a leader in sustainable environmental practices.
- Advocating for public policies that are in line with our UU values and principles.
If you believe that your event meets the criteria for a donation, please complete both the rental application and donation application form and submit them to firstname.lastname@example.org, or in person at our offices located at 405 Washington Ave. Albany, NY 12206.
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