A list of locations to have a meeting, from 12 people to 109,901 people. You can get professional event planning help from the Ann Arbor Area Convention and Visitors Bureau. Arborweb's City Guide has a list of conference centers with additional details.

Ed wrote an article in January 2010 for AnnArbor.com about places to have a meeting.

See Wedding Venues for wedding locations.

Cycling Stores

The oldest and largest cycling shop in Michigan has a great place to meet.

 Wheels In Motion - Private conference room for 12 with sink, counter, coffee. Free/small charge depending on your group.

Cafes and restaurants

Most cafes and restaurants can accommodate small, ad hoc meetings of up to a dozen, as long as you are willing to buy a meal or coffee. Some have private dining rooms or private meeting rooms which provide more privacy. Listed alphabetically.

Fraternal and service organizations

Some of these venues are reserved for members, but others are rented to the general public.

Union halls

Private Clubs with Rental

Veterans organizations

Service organizations

Public and private schools

Look for cafeterias, gymnasiums, and auditoriums to rent. You may have to pay custodian's fees.

Ann Arbor Public Schools

Ann Arbor Public schools rents out a variety of spaces (auditoriums, recreation rooms, gymnasiums, cafeterias). The cost seems to be between $12-40 or so per hour, plus custodial fees for unlocking rooms if the event is on a weekend (not cheap). See: http://www.aareced.com/reced.home/reserve_facilities

Saline Area Schools

Places of worship

Some of these locations are primarily available to coreligionists, but others are available to the public. Look for gymnasiums, church basements, and social halls if meeting in a sanctuary is inappropriate.

Corporate board rooms, conference rooms and cafeterias

Any company of size has a room large enough to fit its board of directors or management team, and some larger organizations have auditoriums or corporate cafeterias. You may need to have an employee of the company on hand for the meeting or it may need to be sponsored by the organization.

  • Ann Arbor Area Chamber of Commerce - conference room in their downtown offices, (apparently) available to a Chamber member to reserve for free
  • Maker Works - 3765 Plaza Drive; conference room with 50-60 chairs and tables.  Maker/Tech/Craft meetups & meetings.  Membership not required.

Libraries, public and private

Public and private libraries often have meeting spaces, either for reservation or for general ad hoc use. Your program may need to fit the purpose or goals of a private library.

Clubhouses and common rooms

Many apartment and condo communities have some sort of shared space, usable by groups for parties or events. You may need to have a resident of the community sponsor or reserve the space.

  • Great Oak Cohousing - common house, 3 rooms of varying sizes. Used by groups like Go Tech, must be sponsored by a resident (donations welcome but not required--contact via form at www.gocoho.org).

Coworking and corporate meeting space

Free standing corporate centers offering meeting spaces for rent by the hour or day. Coworking facilities may have priority access and preferential pricing for members. Shared spaces run by non-profits may have restrictions on use to be consistent with the non-profit's mission.

Senior centers

Private halls

City, county, and state parks

University spaces

Securing a place in University facilities can often be helped by having a contact within the organization make the arrangements. Many student groups have access to space that ordinary mortals find difficult to get at, so having your event co-sponsored by a student organization is a path to access.

University of Michigan

Listed separately; many student groups have access to these and other spaces at nominal rents, and host events open to the general public.

See http://studentorgs.umich.edu/guidebook/facilities for more details and many more venues.

Eastern Michigan University

Washtenaw Community College

Concordia University

 

Hotels

Country clubs

Concert houses and theaters

Fairgrounds

For your large scale outdoor event or one that needs sheds and barns.

Outside

Matthaei Botanical Gardens

Rented for weddings and other events. See their rental page for more info. Rental fees for the Gardens, including 75 white chairs and indoor backup, start at $1100.

Block party

For a couple temperate months each year, you can move your event outside and have a block party. There are permits etc. that need to be requested from the City beforehand.

Unsorted, unverified

  • the old Cygamz space in the showcase movie theater @ (734) 973-6360 (John Green or Kelly Mervyn).
  • that long warehouse-y space attached to the Liberty Lofts might be available for renting.

Ypsilanti, specifically

The conference room at the Archives in the Ypsilanti Historical Museum is available for rent.

The Martini Bar at the Mongolian Grille downtown Ypsilanti is also available during the day.

Unused commercial space

See a vacant storefront that would be perfect for your event? Contact the landlord, make an offer. You may need to deal with permit issues.

Further Speculation

An Ann Arbor News article on the prospect of a new conference or convention center compares what's available now in Ann Arbor to other venues around the state.

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