The grounds of the Shadelands Ranch Museum are available for non-commercial use by individuals, businesses, corporations and non-profit organizations with 501(c)3 statuses. The beautifully maintained landscaping surrounds the historical Penniman house and our picturesque rosebush-surrounded gazebo provides a gorgeous, romantic setting for your outdoor wedding or event. A large barked area, shaded by huge oak trees and with picnic tables, to the side of the Museum house offer a venue with a more rustic feel. For an evening event, weave strings of tiny lights or garden lights through the trees to add an enchanting ambiance to the occasion. You and your guests will be reminded of the gracious hospitality that was once extended to guests of the Ranch over 100 years ago.
Because of its beauty and easy access, as well as its cost-effective and uncomplicated pricing, Shadelands is an increasingly popular site for wedding ceremonies and receptions. We also host outside birthday, anniversary, graduation celebrations, company picnics and family reunions.
Access to the inside of the Museum house is limited to the kitchen which is available as a changing room or as a staging area for your caterer. As committed as Shadelands is to keeping the Ranch authentic to its early 20th-century style, the “old-fashioned” kitchen comes with a new gas range and oven masquerading as a black wood-burning stove, a refrigerator with ice maker and a dishwasher camouflaged with wood paneling.
Modern restrooms are adjacent to the new barn, just behind the circa 1902 water tank house and worker’s cabin that border the garden.
The lawn area holds up to 250-300 guests. Included in the rental fees are the use of 150 chairs and 30 tables. Our Event Staff will be available and on-site at all times to set up the tables and chairs, to move them if necessary between ceremony and reception, to take them down and put them away after your event and to be on hand to offer assistance with venue matters.
The grounds are available for rental April through October. Pricing is straight forward and uncomplicated. Compared to most venues offering similar garden settings, the grounds are available at an exceptional value, with minimal “add on” fees.
Rental Rates and Fees
- $350 per hour
- Three (3) hour minimum
- Hours reserved must include time for decorating and take down/clean up
- Event must be completed by 10 p.m.; cleanup completed by 11 p.m.
- Included in rental rate are 150 chairs and 30 tables
- Included in rental rate is 90 minutes rehearsal time (to be scheduled with Event Coordinator)
- Additional table rental up to maximum inventory — $2 each
- Additional chair rental up to maximum inventory — $2 each
- Please check with Event Coordinator for availability
- $200 set up/take down and custodial fee (regardless of whether outside vendor provides tables and chairs)
- $500 damage deposit — fully refundable if premises are left in good condition
- $100 for use of kitchen — optional
Rates subject to change without notice. Custodian set-up services
The facility will be rented on a first come, first served basis depending on availability. A minimum deposit of $300, applied to total rental fees due, is required to hold the desired date. The Contract, Rules and Regulations and ancillary documents must be signed and delivered, and the Reservation Fee paid upfront at the time the Facility reservation is made. Payment in full of all fees is due 30 days in advance of your event.
The renter must deliver a Certificate of Insurance to the WCHS at least 30 days before their event. The Certificate of Insurance must carry minimum liability coverage of $1,000,000 and must name the WCHS and the City of Walnut Creek as additional insured, at no cost to the WCHS.
We would love to host your event. Call the Museum business office at 925-935-7871 (Monday – Friday, 9am-4pm) to inquire whether the date you wish to reserve is available. We’d be happy to answer any questions you may have and help make you special event great.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Where can I get a Certificate of Insurance for the event?
A: If you or a member of your family carries homeowners or renter’s insurance, usually your insurance carrier can write a one-time event liability policy. If you don’t have access to an insurance agent, we can give you the name of an agent who has worked with the Museum in the past to write a one-time event policy.
Q: What part of the historic house and grounds can be used?
A: You are renting the outside grounds for your event. You have total use of all of the available area outside, including the gazebo, back and side lawn areas, wrap around porch, barked/oak tree area to the side of the house, parking lot and restrooms. Inside the house, only the kitchen and small side access porch may be used if you have opted to rent the kitchen for $100 for the entire time of your event. The rest of the Museum house is not available to you or your guests.
Q: When can we rehearse?
A: 90 minutes of free rehearsal time is included in your rental fees. Rehearsal times must be scheduled in advance of wedding date with as much notice as possible. Every effort will be made to honor your requested rehearsal date and time but if another wedding or event is scheduled on the date/time you wish to rehearse, the wedding/event will have priority to scheduling your rehearsal. You will be notified immediately with as much advance notice as possible if and when another wedding or event is scheduled which may conflict with your scheduled or anticipated rehearsal date or time. There is no reduction of rental rates if a rehearsal is not needed. NO DECORATING IS PERMITTED DURING SCHEDULED REHEARSAL TIME. Decorating time must be scheduled into hours rented and no security is available to protect your property.
Q: What may be used on the grounds?
A: Bubbles, birdseed and rose petals may be used.
Q: What CANNOT be used on the grounds?
A: • NO nails, staples or bonding tapes may be used anywhere in or on the house, gazebo or any tree on the grounds. Ample nails and hooks are already provided so that you can decorate easily
• NO rice, aerosol streamers, plastic or metal confetti may be thrown
• Tents, shades/umbrellas, dance floors, generators or unusual electrical equipment must be pre-approved by the WCHS and/or the Walnut Creek Fire Department
Q: Do you require the use of specific caterers or vendors?
A: No, we have no restrictions on which you use for your caterer or other vendors. You are free to use who you choose. We also do not require any “add on” fees for number of guests, cake cutting fees, caterer fees, bartender fees, corkage fees, etc.
Q: Who provides tables and chairs, linens, tableware, etc.?
A: The use of 150 chairs and 30 tables are included in your rental fees. Additional tables and chairs are available at an additional cost of $2 each up to the maximum available of each in our inventory. Please discuss your needs for additional tables and chairs with the Event Coordinator. If you prefer to bring in tables and chairs from an outside vendor rather than using ours, you are free to do so and are free to use whatever vendor you desire.
The Museum does not provide linens, tableware, glassware, etc. In the event you would like to provide your guests more shade than the large trees can provide, you are welcome to use shades and/or umbrellas. However, you must provide them and they must be of a design that will not leave large holes or indentations in the grass. Please check with the Event Coordinator prior to renting them so that we can approve design and plans so as not to cause damage to underground irrigation systems.
Q: When may we and any of our outside vendors set up?
A: All decorating and other activities must be done during the contracted time frame.
Our Event Staff will be here approximately two hours prior to your contracted start time. He will have your tables and chairs set up according to your instructions so that you can begin your decorating and set up at your contract start time. The two hours that our Event Staff is setting up prior to your start time, as well as the take down time and any moving of tables and chairs, is part of the $200 set fee for custodial time and is not paid at the contract hourly rate.
Any rented equipment from an outside vendor must be delivered and removed within the time frame you specified on your contract or with special arrangement permission from the Event Coordinator. This applies to any and all vendors and help you use including but not limited to caterers, outside tables, chairs, etc., photographers, florists, etc.
The Museum does not have the ability to store equipment and supplied and no security is available. If you drop off anything prior to your event, or leave them after your event, the Museum assumes no responsibility for your property or the property of your vendors and you leave your property at your own risk.
Q: May we serve alcoholic beverages?
A: Yes. Pursuant to the City of Walnut Creek Municipal Code, beer and alcohol are allowed. Distilled spirits (hard liquor) are NOT permitted. Part of your contract requires that you sign an “Authorization Regarding Use of Non Use of Alcohol.”
Q: Is the Museum handicap accessible?
A: Yes, all outside grounds, including the wrap around porch and restrooms, are handicap accessible.
Q: Is parking available?
A: Yes, free parking is available. There is a small lot that can accommodate approximately 35 cars to the side of the Museum house. Behind the house, accessible through the back of 2700 Ygnacio Valley Rd (left at Via Monte Ave) is a large lot maintained by the office building at 2700. We have an agreement with the complex for use of their lot. Handicap parking is accessible immediately behind the gazebo.
Q: Is smoking allowed on the premises?
A: No smoking is allowed inside any building or structure, including kitchen and restrooms, per California law. Smoking is allowed in outside areas. Please provide for appropriate disposal of smoking waste.
Q: Are there any restrictions regarding noise level?
A: Yes. You will be provided with a copy of the City of Walnut Creek Ordinance regarding noise requirements and you will be required to adhere to the provisions of the Ordinance. Excessive or unreasonably loud noise of any kind is prohibited. Our guidelines are that amplified music must be turned down by 10:00 p.m. and discontinued by 11:30 p.m.
Q: Are electrical outlets available?
A: Yes. The gazebo has several electrical outlets, there are electrical outlets available near the restrooms, and limited electrical outlets are available at the back of the house and on the wrap around porch for adding additional lighting and caterer use. However, please bear in mind that we are a historical house without “commercial” electrical wiring. If you intend to have a lot of electrical needs (i.e., elaborate DJ systems, photo booths, etc.) you may want to consider having a portable generator available – just in case. Please talk to the Event Coordinator to evaluate your requirements.
Please don't hesitate to contact the museum event coordinator if you have any other questions. We are always happy to help!!