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Wedding Policies

Scheduling & Fees

  • All weddings have 3 hour ceremony time slots (11am-2pm, 2pm-5pm, & 5pm-8pm).
  • The chapel fee includes: chapel rehearsal for a 1 hour block, chapel ceremony for a 3 hour block, parking in a TCU campus lot, assistance of a chapel coordinator, & services of a sound technician.
  • Discounts apply only if the one of the individuals being married is TCU alumni, faculty, staff, trustee, or the children of.
    A date may be held for 7 days before the non-refundable $500 deposit & signed contract are due. The remainder of the fee must be paid in full within 30 days of making your reservation. All checks payable to TCU. If both the $500 deposit & contract have not been submitted within 7 days of the reservation being made, the date is opened up to other clients.
  • Payments may be dropped off in Jarvis Hall, M-F 9am-5pm, mailed in, or paid online at www.chapel.tcu.edu.
  • All rehearsals are Friday evenings & are 1 hour each as they are held back to back. Users must begin & end the rehearsal within the assigned hour. If participants arrive late, a full rehearsal may not be possible. Rehearsals may not be moved from the designated time.

Capacity

  • The chapel’s maximum capacity is 364 people as established by the Fire Marshall of the City of Fort Worth. No more than 324 persons are admitted in the chapel at one time. The sanctuary & balcony area comfortably hold about 300
  • Maximum of 10 persons are allowed to stand on each side of the couple (10 on the left side, 10 on the right side) in order to keep the aisles clear. Should there be more persons in your bridal party, they may sit in the chairs on the altar or front pews in the sanctuary.
  • There is a maximum of 24 people allowed in the narthex at any given time.

General Chapel Policies

  • All outside vendors (florist, photographer, videographer, outside coordinator) must sign & return a contract stating that they understand & agree to CHAPEL policies. All contracts can be found online.
  • No smoking or use of tobacco products is permitted in the chapel, the adjoining buildings or on the chapel steps.
  • TCU prohibits the carrying of licensed or unlicensed guns or weapons as defined by Texas State law onto its campus.
  • Anyone found in violation of this policy will be escorted off campus.
  • For safety reasons, motorized vehicles as part of the ceremony are prohibited. Wagons and strollers are allowed but not encouraged. Guests with strollers must park the strollers in the narthex to keep aisles clear. Walkers & motorized apparatus used by individuals with disabilities are permitted.
  • Pets or animals of any kind, except service animals, are not permitted in the chapel.
  • Food & drink are permitted inside the holding rooms/classrooms, but NOT inside the sanctuary.
  • No alcohol is allowed on campus including in the holding rooms, chapel, cloisters, or outside/around the chapel at any time. Persons who arrive intoxicated or become intoxicated while getting ready for the ceremony, during the ceremony, or rehearsal will be ticketed & escorted off property by TCU Police. Rehearsals & ceremonies will not be conducted when any member of the party is under the influence of alcohol.

Security Deposit

  • There is a required security deposit of $250, which must be paid no later than 90 days before your wedding.
  • The security deposit may NOT be made online & must be made via a separate check made out to TCU.
  • The security deposit will be forfeited if any policies are broken. Some of the frequent rules broken include, but are not limited to: alcohol in holding rooms, showing up intoxicated, over maximum capacity, destruction of property, coming early, staying late, leaving the chapel in a state other than how it was upon arrival, breaking music policies, etc.
  • If no rules are broken & no damages occur, the check will be shredded by chapel staff & an email confirmation will be sent to the couple. If you would like your check returned to you, you may pick it up in person, after the wedding.

Flowers & Décor

  • Florists/vendors have access to the chapel for the time frame stated in the chapel contract. The time frames are strictly followed. Set-up must be completed 30 minutes prior to the beginning of ceremony start time.
  • All furnishings & fixtures are considered permanent & may not be moved. These items include, but are not limited to the cross, communion table, piano, narthex tables, kneeler, pew cushions, hymnals, lectern, pulpit, organ, or chairs.
  • Nothing may be placed on the organ or piano, draped, hung, or leaned upon the cross. Arrangements cannot interfere with the movement of the bridal party, guests, & the musician’s sightline.
  • Floral arrangements, decorations, ribbons, & ropes cannot block access to or from the aisle, pews, & doors at ANY time. Narthex/Sanctuary doors must remain open as guests are entering & exiting the chapel per code.
  • Flower arrangements may be hung on the lanterns outside of the chapel or on the coat hangers inside the narthex.However, nothing can be hung, or placed on the inside or outside chapel doors.
  • Floral arrangements & candles may be placed in the window sills, if a protective base is used. All candles must have a protective base. Candles may not be used in the aisles, unless battery operated. No glass containers allowed in aisles. Candles may not have ribbons or any other flammable material tied around them. Chapel staff reserves the right to limit excess candle use at staff discretion.
  • The chapel does not provide any decorations, candles, candle holders, communion materials, stands/columns for floral arrangements, or storage for décor.
  • No décor may be affixed to any chapel furniture or walls by nails, tape, putty, tacks, pins, glue, or 3M products. No runners or carpets may be used in the aisles. No glitter or balloons allowed in the chapel.
  • No pew hangers allowed. If pew décor is desired, we recommend using tulle or ribbon to tie on.
  • No rice or confetti can be thrown within or around the chapel. Birdseed or biodegradable flower petals are permitted.
  • Wedding party or florist is responsible for picking up ALL chapel décor, including all materials thrown inside & outside; no clean up materials provided. All décor must be removed by the end of the time frame. The chapel & surrounding areas must look as it did when you arrived; otherwise the security deposit is forfeited! THE CHAPEL is not responsible for any belongings left behind.

Music

  • Instrumental or vocal music is permitted however no recorded music is allowed. It is highly suggested that music of a classical, religious or sacred nature be used. Music may not include vulgar, profane or inappropriate language and references. Music selections beyond those played by chapel musicians must be approved by chapel staff in advance.
  • Only chapel musicians may play the organ &/or carillon bell tower music. In addition to the organ & carillon, chapel musicians can also play the piano; however, outside pianists may be brought in as well. The fee for a chapel musician is $300 & must be paid no later than 90 days prior to the ceremony. Due to scheduling, this fee is nonrefundable.
  • Services of a chapel musician include: a music consultation, overall coordination of music, presence during the rehearsal & ceremony, opening pieces on the tower bells, a 30 minute pre-ceremony concert, processional music, accompaniment as needed, recessional music, the playing of the tower bells as guests are leaving, and additional organ & piano music, if desired.
  • Once the musician fee has been paid, you will be given your musician’s contact information & should then get in touch with your musician to set up a consultation.
  • Please see common music selections on our website. If you choose to use a chapel musician, they can tell you which music is & is not allowed, during your music consultation. Weddings not using chapel musicians must have their music approved by staff no later than 90 days before the service.
  • If you choose to use music other than what is on our website &/or contract additional musicians to play in accompaniment with our musicians, at least 1 month before your wedding, the chapel musician must have sheet music in a format that can be read for organ/piano in the requested key, as well as names & contact information for vocalists &/or additional musicians.

Photography

  • Photographers have access to the inside/outside of chapel, cloisters, holding rooms, & chapel grounds for the time frame stated in the chapel contract. The time frames are strictly followed. Pictures may be taken off site, elsewhere on campus before & after their time frame.
  • Pictures may be taken throughout the chapel up to 30 minutes before ceremony start time. All large equipment (light umbrellas, etc.) must be taken down & stored for the ceremony. Any stationary equipment, beyond the camera itself, must be in place 30 minutes before the ceremony begins.
  • Photography equipment may not be stored in narthex during the ceremony, but may be stored in balcony or back pews if not in use by guests.
  • No flash photography permitted during the rehearsal or ceremony (beginning of processional to end of recessional). This includes in the narthex.
  • Photography may be taken throughout the chapel, but no photography may be done from the chancel during the processional, ceremony, or recessional. An unstaffed stationary camera may be placed on the chancel only if it is hidden from the audience sight, does not interfere with the musician’s line of sight, or movement of the bridal party.
  • Equipment must be removed by the end of the time block, and the chapel is not responsible for equipment left behind.
  • Bridal/groom portrait reservations are hosted at no charge & permitted as possible. The chapel may be used for a maximum of 2 hours. Please respect yours & other’s time frames by not showing up any earlier or staying later than your reserved time. No changing rooms are provided for portraits.

Videography

  • Videographers have access to the chapel for the time frame stated in the chapel contract.
  • Audio recording equipment must be in place 30 minutes before the ceremony begins.
  • An audio recording connection is available on the ground next to the second column from the front. You may plug into this audio lead with a 3 Pin XLR Male Microphone Cable.
  • Handheld, wireless video cameras may move around freely during the ceremony, as long as they do not interfere with the line of sight of the organist or movement of the bridal party. Stationary, tripod cameras may be in the balcony &/or behind any of the columns only.
  • Video cameras, equipment, & videographers may not block access to the aisles or pews at any time.
  • An unstaffed stationary video camera may be placed on the chancel only if it is hidden from the sight of the audience, does not interfere with the line of sight of the organist, & movement of the bridal party.
  • The personal use of any unmanned aircraft systems (i.e. drones) is prohibited on campus, unless approved by the Vice Chancellor. Approval must be obtained 2 weeks prior to the event in order to implement security measures. Written approval must be presented to CHAPEL staff beforehand.
  • Equipment must be removed by the end of the time block and the chapel is not responsible for equipment left behind.
  • All fees will be forfeited in the event that you cancel or reschedule less than 9 months prior to your date. A refund, minus your $500 deposit, will be made only if cancellation is given in writing at least 9 months before the facilities are to be used- no exceptions.
  • Refunds will only be issued to the person who made the reservation & paid the original fee.
  • If necessary, a wedding date or time may be rescheduled once if more than 9 months from the original date. After that, any changes will be considered a cancellation & will require rebooking.
  • A cancellation or rebooking must be in written format from one of the individuals being married. Cancellations & rebookings are not accepted from outside wedding coordinators, parents, friends, etc.
  • The wedding contract is valid only for the couple listed and may not be sold.
  • Due to musician scheduling, the $300 music fee is absolutely nonrefundable.
  • In the event that a wedding is booked within 90 days of the ceremony, the contract, full payment & the security deposit are due in 7 days. Also, the music & parking fees are due within 7 days, if applicable.
  • In the event that TCU closes due to hazardous weather conditions, the couple will be offered to either refund the full chapel fee or may move to a new date, up to 1 year from the original date. In certain circumstances, if parking, sidewalks & nearby roads are deemed accessible, university staff may keep the chapel open, if requested.

Only music that is of a sacred, religious, or classical nature may be played in the chapel. The mention of God or Jesus does not necessarily make a song religious.

For weddings using the organ or piano, only TCU Chapel musicians may be used, no exceptions. The fee for a TCU musician is $300 and must be paid no later than 90 days prior to the wedding date.

Services of an organist/pianist include: a music consultation, overall coordination of music, presence during the rehearsal and ceremony, opening pieces on the tower bells, a 30 minute pre-ceremony concert, processional music, accompaniment as needed, recessional music, the playing of the tower bells as guests are leaving, both organ and piano music, if desired.

Once the musician fee has been paid, you will be notified of whom your musician is and given their contact information. You may then get in touch with your musician and set up a music consultation. At least 1 month before your wedding, the TCU chapel musician must have all of the information for your wedding including: sheet music in a format that can be read for organ/piano and the requested key, names and contact information for vocalists or additional musicians.

Weddings not using the organ or piano must have their music approved by staff 90 days before the service. String and wind instruments are welcome, but recorded music and electronic keyboards are prohibited.

To hear common music selections for weddings in Robert Carr Chapel visit the Music Examples. You can hear our chapel wedding musicians playing the sweet-toned Reuter pipe organ in the chapel.

Wedding photo courtesy of Lightly Photography.