Frequently Asked Questions

  • Is it possible to have a ceremony and a reception at the Museum?

Of course! You are also welcome to hold just a ceremony or reception on site.

  • How can I view the spaces that are available?

The museum is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday 10:00AM to 5:00PM, Sunday Noon to 5:00PM.  Guided sites tours are available by contacting Erica Reynolds at (805) 966-1601 ext. 115 or

  • How can I check availability or hold a date?

Contact the Rental Coordinator for date availability.  The Museum reserves your date with a signed contract and payment of rental fees. 

  • What if the date I’m interested in is already booked?

Upon request, we can add your name to a date waiting list.

  • What is the earliest event start time?

4:00PM; earlier times can be negotiated in advance. 

  • What is the latest time an event can run?

By City Code, the event must end no later than 10:00PM.

  • How early can my event vendors access the site?

The grounds open at 9:00AM.  Vendors are to be off-site by midnight unless prior written arrangements have been negotiated 30 days in advance.

  • What is the policy for delivery of party supplies?

The Museum does not accept deliveries or shipments.  If you are tenting or renting furniture, your vendor can arrange for delivery prior to 9:00AM.  Additional fees may apply. 

  • May I use candles?

Yes, but only if they are enclosed in protective containers.  Our full policies and procedures are covered in your contract.  You may request an electronic version:

  • Does the Museum provide any tables, chairs or event supplies for Courtyard rentals?

No, the Museum does not have any in-house equipment for events. 

  • Does the rental fee include staff?

Yes.  Fees include a Museum Representative the day of your event to assist with vendors, security, and custodial services.  The rental fee also includes grounds keeping and custodial services before your event.  Additional security staff is provided if you are renting the Museum galleries. 

  • What types of event are permitted?

Please contact the Museum for further information:

  • Does the Museum require a wedding coordinator?

No.  The Museum recommends a day-of coordinator, but does not require it. 

  • What area is available for a ceremony in case of rain?

If you are renting during the rainy season you should create a backup plan of tenting the site. 

  • Is there a space available for the bride to prepare prior to the ceremony?

Yes.  A room is available. 

  • Can I bring in my own alcohol?

We do allow event hosts to provide their own alcohol through an approved supplier.  Some caterers do not allow clients to provide their own alcohol, as they carry the license and liability for liquor.  Alcohol must  be served by a licensed bartender, self-service bars are not permitted. 

  • To help save on costs, is it OK for my family and/or friends to supply food for my event?

No.  Self-catering is not permitted.  However,  we are able to offer useful tips and proven resources to assist you in keeping your event within your budget. 

  • What if my guests arrive early?

Guests will not be permitted into the event space until your contracted start time; however, early guests are welcome to tour the Museum galleries.  For a guided tour, please contact the Rental Coordinator to arrange a docent led tour. 

  • Does the Museum provide parking?

Onsite parking is limited to Museum staff, gallery visitors, your event vendors and your event satellite kitchen.  However the Santa Barbara School District parking lot is conveniently located across the street and provides fifty spaces that are available on weeknights and weekend to rent.  To reserve the lot, telephone (805) 963-4331 ext. 305 or visit and link to ‘Facilities.’

  • Are there contractual obligations after contract is approved?

Yes, a $1,000 refundable cleaning/damage fee, a Certificate of Insurance covering $1,000,000 general liability (naming the Museum as co-insured), and a list of your vendors is required 60 days prior to the event. 

  • Does my rental fee help the operations of the Museum?

Yes! Your rental contributes directly to the educational and curatorial goals of the Museum. 

Additional Information?

Contact Erica Reynolds, Rental Coordinator, via email: or by phone: (805) 966-1601 Ext. 115