This month sees the beginning of a three-year pilot program to expand events at the 19 Smithsonian museums and galleries, 17 of which are in Washington, D.C. and the other two are in New York City and Chantilly, Va.
Though the program is partly aimed at weddings and other celebrations, each of the venues’ directors were given five categories of events to expand, including corporate and association receptions and banquets, that they could choose from based on their facilities. Revenue from the expanded number of events is expected to increase by at least 20 percent.
The National Zoo offers indoor and outdoor space including around animal exhibits such as the Giant Pandas. The Renwick Gallery is located almost adjacent to the White House and has a Grand Ballroom. Multiple other museums offer iconic spaces, such as the Rotunda at the Natural History Museum and public entrance hall beneath aircraft including the Spirit of St. Louis at the Air and Space Museum. The Chantilly annex of the Air and Space Museum is located near the 130,000-square-foot Dulles Expo Center and just south of Washington Dulles International Airport; it has event space featuring the Space Shuttle Discovery that can host up to 1,200 attendees for a banquet.
For more information about each of the Smithsonian’s event spaces click here.