Weddings


Congratulations on your engagement! We hope this information will be helpful to you as you inquire about having your ceremony in the Alice Millar or Jeanne Vail  Chapel. Wedding flowers

Eligibility

Bride and DadIn order to use the Alice Millar or Jeanne Vail Chapel for a wedding, one of the people getting married must be affiliated with Northwestern University. Affiliates are: students, faculty and staff of Northwestern, graduates of the university, or immediate family members of faculty, administrators or staff. Reservations are accepted no more than one year prior to the date of the wedding.

Seating Capacity

The seating capacity of Millar Chapel is approximately 700. Most weddings in Millar have one to two hundred guests, though there is no minimum requirement. Vail Chapel seats approximately 125.

Officiating

Bride and Groom

The university chaplain and associate university chaplain officiate at many ceremonies. They would be happy to speak with you about their availability. You may also invite other clergy to officiate.

Fees


Fees for weddings in Millar and Vail Chapels.
A non-refundable deposit of $100 (check made payable to Northwestern University) is due at the time the reservation is made. The remainder is due at least one month before the wedding.  The balance due check is also made payable to Northwestern University.

Wedding Fee Table

Description Fee
Millar Chapel
Standard Fee $500.00
If either partner is a current student at the time of the wedding: $400.00
Vail Chapel
Standard Fee $400.00
If either partner is a current student at the time of the wedding: $350.00
Musician Fees
Organist without soloist $250.00
Organist with one soloist $275.00
Organist: personal meeting with couple $100.00
Conducting Rehearsal $125.00
Soloist (instrumental or vocal) $225.00


Stained Glass Windows
Clergy honorarium.
It is customary to provide an honorarium to the officiating clergy. The standard honorarium for the clergy of the university chapel is $350.

For most weddings, a student security monitor will be present open the building and offer any necessary assistance. For some extraordinary dates, it may be necessary to hire a university custodian. In that case, an additional charge of $150 may be added.

Musician’s honoraria must be sent or delivered to Music Associate at Alice Millar Chapel at least one week prior to ceremony.

Scheduling

StageEvents may not be scheduled simultaneously in both chapels.   For weddings, access to the building is available one hour before the start time.

Rooms are available for members of the wedding party to prepare for the ceremony.

The building is available one hour before the wedding, and no more than one hour afterward to accommodate photographs.

A rehearsal is usually scheduled the evening before the ceremony.  Rehearsals are limited to one hour.  Members of the wedding party should be encouraged to arrive on time, so that the rehearsal hour can be used productively and the rehearsal completed in the time allotted.

The Alice Millar or Jeanne Vail Chapel cannot accept responsibility for any valuables left anywhere at any time in either chapel.

Other regulations for wedding ceremonies

Wedding Decor

Flowers

We recommend that flowers be limited to one or two pieces on or near the Holy Table/Altar.  Aisles (both center and side) and the pews of the chapels are not to be decorated with flowers, bows, candles, or any other material.  Since we cannot guarantee that the building will be open more than one hour before the wedding, careful arrangements should be made for the delivery of flowers.

Candles

Candles on the Holy Table/Altar will be lighted for you one half hour before the ceremony begins. The lighting of a unity candle or wedding candle is permitted and may be placed on the Holy Table/Altar. Wedding candles and candle holders must be provided by you. No other candles or candelabras are permitted. The Holy Table/ Altar candles are not to be removed from the Holy Table/Altar.

Aisle runner

If you choose to have an aisle runner, you are responsible for all arrangements concerning it, including attaching it to the floor at the front of the chapel. Arrangements are usually made with the florist. Disposable aisle runners will be picked up by the chapel staff. Arrangements to pick up non-disposable aisle runners will be your responsibility. The length of the aisle in Millar Chapel is 115 feet. In Vail Chapel, the aisle is 45 feet long.

Flower petals

Flower petals may be distributed in the aisle only if there is an aisle runner.

Rice & Birdseed

The use of rice or birdseed is prohibited in the chapels or on the grounds.  An alternative to the traditional tossing of grains or seeds could be blowing bubbles or ringing small bells.  Please inform us of plans in advance.

Audio/Visual

Photography

Photography is permitted during wedding ceremonies only if it is done quietly and unobtrusively. The use of flash during the wedding is prohibited. Flash may be used during the processional and recessional. Professional photographers should remain behind the congregation. The bride and groom are responsible for informing wedding photographers of chapel regulations.

Videotaping

Videotaping of wedding ceremonies may only be done with the permission of the officiating clergy. Video cameras must be placed in a fixed location behind the congregation. No additional lighting may be used.

Musical Services

We have extensive musical services and resources available. Please visit our musical services page to learn more.

Contact Us

CourtyardFor more information, or to schedule your wedding, contact the Chapel Office at 847-491-7256 or email chaplain@northwestern.edu.

Please note, the fees and regulations described in this document are subject to change.