PLEASE NOTE: As of March 14, 2020, Athens Area Council for the Arts’ Board of Directors has temporarily restricted all facility rentals. At this time, the date when rentals will resume is unknown.

Facility Rental

The Arts Center is available for rent throughout the year. The exhibit room can accommodate up to 40 seated at tables; 75 for theater seating, for dinners, receptions, or meetings. A fully equipped staging kitchen is available. The crafts classroom can accommodate approximately 20 people at craft tables. The Sue E. Trotter Theater can accommodate approximately 150 seated at tables and 175-200 in theater seating. The theater is a great venue for receptions, parties, dinners, meetings, and performances.

For more information on all programs and opportunities at The Arts Center, call (423)745-8781. You may sign up for our mailing list to receive up to date information on all programs of the Athens Area Council for the Arts.

Available Spaces


This 200 seat black box theater is dedicated to the memory of the early Arts Council organizer and supporter, Sue E. Trotter. It is a state of the art theater space which has been used for performances by local and touring artists, community theatre, dances, parties, wedding receptions, fashion shows, theatre classes, and more. It has been home of Athens Community Theatre since 2006.


The Arts Center features two galleries available for rotating exhibits. You may see everything from local student art to traveling exhibitions curated by professionals in their field. Exhibition art is often offered for sale as well.


The Arts Center uses all of its programming and exhibit space as settings for a variety of arts classes including watercolor, drawing, pottery, cake decorating, jewelry making, theatre, and more – for all ages.



As we have many requests, The Arts Center is first come, first served. In order to reserve a date, please call (423) 745-8781 to inquire about available dates. If you have not visited The Arts Center, we invite you to come view the facility, Sue E Trotter Theater, Exhibit Room and Classroom and see how we can help make your event a wonderful experience.

The Arts Center rooms are available for private events from 10:00am until midnight, unless otherwise approved. Spaces made available during The Arts Center hours are done so with the understanding that the public must be admitted into the exhibits, The Art Market and other public spaces unless special arrangements have been made and approved by AACA’s Executive Director.

Short notice reservations may be available at the discretion of the executive director.


Reservations will only be secured upon receipt of a signed contract and full payment of the 25% security deposit and 50% rental deposit. The balance of the Rental fees will be payable two (2) weeks before the event. The security deposit will be refunded upon favorable inspection of the site following the event. If extra cleaning costs are needed to get the building in as found condition then part of your security deposit will be used for this service. For events larger than 100 guests, or where alcohol is served, additional security officers may be required. The renter will be charged the cost of security.

It is the policy of The Arts Center to rent its physical facilities to various civic and professional groups and individuals whose activities are compatible with the mission and goals of The Arts Center. The Arts Center reserves the right to refuse any rental request.


Smoking is not permitted within The Arts Center structure. Smoking is permitted outside wherever proper receptacles are placed; however, all smoking materials must be extinguished in the proper receptacles before entering the building.

Alcohol may be served or sold on the premises only by a licensed caterer for consumption on the premises only. The licensed caterer must present proof of insurance to the Executive Director of The Arts Center prior to the event.

The throwing of rice or confetti will not be permitted either inside or outside The Arts Center. Decorations using glitter will not be allowed. Proper receptacles must be used under all candles to keep wax from melting on tables and the floor.

D.J. s and musical groups are allowed to perform with prior approval from The Arts Center. No smoke machines or pyrotechnic shows are allowed.

Rentals for high school functions must be officially sanctioned by the high school with signatures approving the activity from the principal and a faculty sponsor. One (1) chaperone for every 25 students will be required. Extra security may be required.


Rental user is required to notify The Arts Center staff or security of any defective condition of the facility that the rental user noted while using the facility. The Renter must immediately clean or report all spills. Renter/user may not block or lock any fire exits. Renter/User may not use extension cords or equipment that has not been approved by the director.


Reservations are encouraged at least sixty (60) days in advance. Reservations from out of state renters must be made using Master Card or VISA. Changes that involve set up and staff time should be made 48 hours in advance. Upon cancellation of the event, the deposits will be refunded in full if cancellation is at least thirty (30) days before the event. After such time, the rental deposit will not be refunded but your security deposit will be refunded.


The name of the caterer must be submitted and approved by the director. References may be required. A surcharge of $75.00 will be required from the caterer. Caterer must follow all of The Arts Center guidelines for kitchen clean up including sweeping and mopping. Trash must be removed from the building.


Deliveries and pick-ups must be scheduled during the occupied rental period on the day of the event. Storage space is not available. The Arts Center will not be responsible for the damage or loss of the renter’s property. The Arts Center staff will set up and take down the tables and chairs. Renters are required to use our tables and chairs. Other tables and chairs may not be brought into the building without the prior approval of the Executive Director of The Arts Center.

Removal is required of all catering equipment, flowers, trash and any other items that were brought in for the event. Complete cleanup of the kitchen is required before leaving the facilities, which includes washing of all The Arts Center items and returning them to the proper cabinets, making sure the microwave, stove and counter top are clean and sweeping the kitchen and removing all trash.


Depending on the number of spaces requested, number of guests and hours open, staff will be provided at the discretion of The Arts Center Executive Director. The Arts Center staff member(s) will be present for the sole purpose of providing security for The Arts Center.

If an event is planned which will host more than 100 guests, or where alcohol is served, additional security officers will be required. The renter may be charged the cost of security.


Parking is available at The Arts Center at no additional cost.

The Arts Center does not provide security for parking areas and assumes no liability for damage or theft occurring to vehicles while their owners are attending an event at The Arts Center.


Fund raising events by organizations/individuals other than The Arts Center must be approved by the Executive Director. Invitations to any fund raising event that is approved, must state “Benefits of this event are NOT designated for The Arts Center.” A penalty of $1000 will be levied if prior consent is not given by the Executive Director.


The number of guests permitted in The Arts Center for any event must be approved by the Executive Director. For a complete sit down dinner the maximum number the Sue E Trotter Theater can accommodate is 150 and the Exhibit Room is 50. For theater seating the Sue E Trotter Theater can accommodate 175, the Exhibit Room can accommodate 75 and the Crafts Classroom can accommodate 20. The maximum occupancy for the building is 291.

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