The Olbrich Botanical Center is made available for use by all groups through the support of the City of Madison's Parks Division in partnership with the Olbrich Botanical Society. Reasonable rules and guidelines have been established to assure the maximum enjoyment of this facility. Your adherence to these policies will be greatly appreciated.

If you need an interpreter, materials in alternative formats or other accommodations to access this service, activity or program, please contact: (608) 246-4550 or TDD (608) 267-4980.

For information, please call (608) 246-4733
Monday through Friday
8:00 am - 4:00 pm
Fax: (608)246-4719

Facility Uses

The Olbrich Botanical Center was built and funded to promote the art, science and knowledge of the plant world. Therefore, garden clubs and plant societies engaged in horticultural activities are given reservation preference. Meetings, parties and other social or cultural activities are permitted on an availability basis.

Individuals or groups utilizing the Olbrich Botanical Center for room rental must comply with these Facility Rental Guidelines and all other applicable rules and policies. Failure to comply with these rules will result in the loss of utilization privileges.

Individuals or groups utilizing the Olbrich Botanical Center for a wedding ceremony should refer to the Wedding Ceremony information piece for all applicable rules and policies related to use of the Gardens for a wedding ceremony.

Any group who uses the Olbrich Botanical Center is responsible for ensuring compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and all other applicable federal, state and local laws.

Description of Facility

The Olbrich Botanical Center offers the Atrium, Evjue Commons, and Upstairs Meeting Room for rental Sunday through Saturday. Olbrich sets up and provides for all tables and chairs needed to support your event, excluding wedding ceremonies. A range of audio-visual and presentation equipment is available.

The Atrium is on the lower level of the original building. This open and airy room features glass walls and a vaulted glass ceiling with plants and will accommodate the following:

  • Workshop setup 40 guests
  • Theater setup 120 guests
  • Dining setup 64 guests

The Conservatory is a 10,000 sq. ft. glass area that houses a tropical plant collection. The Conservatory may be available after public hours to add to a private rental. Food and/or drink are not allowed in the Conservatory. A minimum fee is charged for after hours private use.

Evjue Commons
The Evjue Commons is a large meeting room featuring a vaulted ceiling and a full glass wall that features beautiful views of a landscaped garden space. Doors in the Evjue Commons lead directly to a terrace with garden furniture and the gardens beyond, although the outdoor space is not part of your rental. The Evjue Commons can accommodate the following:

  • Workshop setup 100 guests
  • Theater setup 200 guests
  • Dining and Dancing 150 guests

All art work on all walls must remain hanging during a private event.

The Commons Kitchen
Limited kitchen facilities are available for catered events using the Evjue Commons. Renter must arrange catering with one of the approved caterers. Any carry-in items (minimally allowed) must be approved by the Rental Coordinator before the event. Dishes of any kind, serving ware, cups, towels and the like are not available in this kitchen.

Upstairs Meeting Room
The carpeted Upstairs Meeting Room is on the upper level of the original building. It features long windowed walls and beautiful views of the Gardens. All windows are fitted with blinds for room darkening capability. The Upstairs Meeting Room is accessible by stairs or elevator. The Upstairs Meeting Room will accommodate the following number of guests per setup:

  • Conference setup 25 guests
  • Workshop setup 35 guests
  • Theater setup 65 guests

The Upstairs Kitchen
Limited kitchen facilities on the second floor of the original building are available for caterers of the Meeting Room and the Atrium. Renter must arrange catering with one of the approved caterers. Any carry-in items (minimally allowed) must be approved by the Rental Coordinator before the event. Dishes of any kind, serving ware, cups, towels and the like are not available in this kitchen.

Scheduling Policy

Reservations are required for all groups wishing to rent the Olbrich Botanical Center. The Gardens are open as public gardens 7 days a week. As a rental facility, the Gardens' rooms are available for rental Sunday through Saturday, depending on availability. All room rental reservations are made by calling the Olbrich Facility Rental Office at 246-4733, Monday through Friday from 8 am - 4 pm.

Fees, Deposits, and Forfeitures

All fees are billed immediately after the reservation is made. There is no down payment process. Full payment is due within two (2) weeks after the invoice date. Fees are subject to change. All fees quoted to prospective users will be honored for the duration of the calendar year.

Users leaving facilities in a manner that requires more than customary cleaning will be billed $25.00 per hour to cover added costs. Failure to pay will result in loss of use privileges.

Fees are payable by CASH, CHECK, MASTERCARD or VISA. Please make checks for reservation fees payable to: Olbrich Botanical Gardens.

Mail to:

Olbrich Botanical Gardens
3330 Atwood Avenue
Madison, WI 53704


Cancellations made at least six (6) months prior to the reservation date will be assessed a 20% administrative fee. Otherwise, fees are forfeit unless the room can be rented to another individual or group for the same time period, at which time an 80% refund will be issued.

There are no refunds for the cancellation of wedding ceremony/reception packages at Olbrich Gardens unless the reserved space is rented to another individual or group for the same time period in which case an 80% refund will be accorded. Please refer to the Wedding Ceremonies brochure for all applicable rules and guidelines related to ceremonies held at Olbrich Botanical Gardens.

General Rules & Regulations

Smoking is not permitted in any part of the Botanical Center or outdoor gardens at any time. Sand ash bins are placed outside the main entrance front doors.

Bar service is available on request. State regulation dictates that Olbrich have only one liquor service provider. All alcoholic beverages must be sold and served through this vendor only. You contract directly with this vendor for your alcoholic beverage service needs. This vendor will tailor their services to meet your needs. The current provider will be shown on the Approved Catering List.

All professionally prepared food must be catered by one of a group of approved caterers that are contracted to provide services at Olbrich Gardens. You contract directly with the caterer of your choice from a list we will provide. All caterers pay a fee of 10% of the total food and non-alcoholic beverage bill directly to Olbrich Gardens to help support the costs unique to a catered event. The 10% is due on any food brought to Olbrich Gardens, whether delivered by the caterer or picked up by individuals.

Pot Luck is not allowed due to Public Health Food & Safety regulations. Groups may bring in water, coffee or provide minimal snacks with prior approval by the Rental Coordinator (246-4733). Groups not utilizing catering staff or are having drop-off food service from an Approved Caterer will be responsible for cleaning of the kitchen and all areas utilized, removal of table cloths, personal equipment and assuring that the premises are in the same good condition as when the group took responsibility for the premises. This includes, but is not limited to the following:

  • All tables and chairs must be wiped off and clean.
  • Put all disposables in heavy duty garbage bags supplied by user and set them near the south door of the Headhouse for staff to take to the dumpster.
  • Recyclables must be placed in recyclable containers only.
  • All cardboard boxes must be broken down, bundled and placed in the Headhouse recycling area.

Private caterers share in the responsibility for the use of the premises. Caterer shall be governed by the "Caterer's Guidelines."

All evening events must conclude in time for everyone to be out of the space by 10:00 p.m. Monday - Thursday, 11:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday.

The storage of any equipment or other accessory items belonging to the users is not permitted. Olbrich Gardens is not responsible for any equipment or other accessory items left at Olbrich Botanical Center at any time.

The use of nails, screws, tape, tacks or the like to fasten decorations or other materials to walls, doors or from the ceiling is strictly prohibited. All decorations should be freestanding.

Candles are allowed only if the flames are enclosed in a glass rose bowl, hurricane lamp or the like.

Glitter, rice, bird seed, flower petals, crystals, confetti and the like cannot be used as table top decorations or for throwing.

Olbrich has free, on-site parking for up to 250 cars. Guests must be at Olbrich Gardens - can't use our lot as a Park-N-Ride.

Table cloths and dishes are not available through the Gardens.

Guests are welcome to walk and enjoy the outdoor gardens during public garden hours as part of any evening rental, but the event itself takes place in the indoor rental space.

User Classifications

Rental rates per room(s) vary according to the classification of the "Group." Groups are defined as either horticultural, public, civic or social organizations or private groups.

Group I - Garden clubs or plant societies engaged in horticultural activities.

Group II - Non-profit public, civic or social organizations (conducting official business) which are not charging a fee, soliciting donations, selling tickets or admission.

Group III - Private events, organizations or parties engaged in activities in which funds are raised, admission is charged, donations solicited, tickets are sold or products sold prior to or during the activity.

All groups or individuals are responsible for the behavior of their guests and invitees. Groups or individuals specifically shall take responsibility for alcohol consumption of guests and any behaviors which may be harmful to any of the facilities, including the plant life, building, grounds, landscaping or other property of Olbrich Gardens.

Rules Regarding Use of Olbrich's Name

Olbrich Botanical Gardens is proud to serve as the site for a wide variety of private and non-profit events. Rental of the Olbrich Botanical Center facility is not intended to imply endorsement or sponsorship by the Gardens for any event or organization. In order to identify Olbrich's own events and activities clearly for the general public, we ask that you adhere to the following guidelines related to the promotion of your event.

Promotional material should reflect your own organization and the nature of your particular event, with Olbrich Botanical Gardens identified as only the site and location.

1. Image and Language
Do not use the logo or images (photographic or drawn) of Olbrich Gardens, Olbrich Botanical Center or the Bolz Conservatory in any material for your event. Do not use language that implies endorsement or sponsorship of your event by Olbrich Botanical Gardens or the Olbrich Botanical Society. For example, you may state that your event "is being held at Olbrich Botanical Gardens," but DO NOT state that your event is "an Olbrich Gardens event."

2. Event Title
Do not include the name of Olbrich or the Bolz Conservatory in the title of your event as this implies endorsement or sponsorship by the site facility. For example, do not name your event "An Evening at Olbrich." The title of your event should help your members, the public, and the media to identify and to raise awareness of your organization, for example, "Merit Center Annual Meeting."

Please clearly indicate a contact person at your own organization that can provide additional information to the public about your event.

Limited Activities

Commercial use of the Olbrich Botanical Center is prohibited. An activity or function constitutes commercial use if:

  • Persons other than the sponsoring organization's current employees or members are invited; and
  • The activity or function involves directly or indirectly promoting or soliciting the sale or purchase of any product, object or service.

Commercial use does not include incidental sales at a meeting or gathering otherwise authorized by the Olbrich Botanical Center.

  • Vendor permits are required if incidental sales are to occur. Application for selling or concession privileges shall be made to the Superintendent of Parks on forms supplied at Olbrich Gardens. Olbrich Staff must have copies of all permits one month prior to an event. Vendor is responsible for obtaining all necessary permits
  • The Park Superintendent or his/her designee may require the vendor to give notice to all purchasers that the City of Madison in no way warrants or guarantees any product or service being offered for sale at the Olbrich Botanical Center.
  • No vendor selling Gift Shop related items shall be permitted except as individually approved by the Park Commission with the advice and consent Olbrich Botanical Gardens' Director and the Olbrich Botanical Society.