Events Services FAQ’s

1. I have an EMS account, but I am unable to login?

Please check to make sure that you are using your whole official university student organization (official university e-mail for faculty or staff members) e-mail address and are typing in the correct password. Passwords are case sensitive so make sure that the caps lock is not on. If you still have difficulty, call the Event Services office at 803-777-8182 and a staff member can check your account information and reset your password if necessary.

2. When can I reserve space for next semester?

The space request process opens for any semester during the semester prior to when you want to request space. For student organizations, this process begins with the Russell House Space Lottery, and for University Departments it begins the day following the Russell House Space Lottery. Please refer to here for more information on dates to submit requests.

3. What is the Russell House Space Lottery?

The Russell House Space Lottery is held each semester for Registered Student Organizations. This process allows for all interested Registered Student Organizations the opportunity to reserve dates for major events and/or weekly meetings. For more information, click here.

4. How do I cancel or make changes to a reservation?

To cancel or make changes to a reservation, please submit your request in writing to by 3pm the business day prior to the date of your reservation. Please include the five digit reservation number and the changes or cancellations you are requesting.

5. Will I be charged for tables and chairs?

Tables and chairs can be used free of charge. Click here to see our equipment inventory and their corresponding prices.

6. Can Registered Student Organizations get funding for Events at the Russell House?

Yes, the Russell House 5000 is available for Registered Student Organizations.

In order to receive funding, you must present before the Senate Finance Committee (meets weekly), who will then approve or deny your request.

For any other questions involving the Russell House 5000, contact the Office of Student Organizations at 803-777-2654.

7. How can I check the status of my room request?

Please contact the Russell House Event Services Office at 803-777-8182.

8. How do I know the capacities for each room in the Russell House?

Click here (coming soon) to go to the Russell House Room Layouts and Capacities.

9. I requested one room, but my confirmation has another room assigned.

Check your confirmation for an alternate room comment. Due to the high demand for space in the Russell House, the Event Services Office may not be able to accommodate your specific request, but we will do everything we can to give you an adequate alternate space. If you are still unsure of what happened with your request, please contact the Event Services Office at 803-777-8182.

10. Where on campus can I hold an outdoor event?

There are four designated areas on campus where you can hold outdoor events: Greene Street (in front of the Russell House), Designated Areas on Davis Field, the Russell House Back Patio, and near the Carolina Coliseum. Click here to see the University Policy on Outdoor Event Registration, and here to see the University Policy on the Use of University Facilities.

Outdoor events in these areas must be completed by dusk, unless an exemption has been officially requested and granted by the Associate Vice President for Student Affairs. Dusk is defined as one hour past the reported sunset time. Please visit here to check the official sunset times for Columbia, SC.

11. Are there restrictions on using amplified sound for outside events at the Russell House?

Yes, amplified sound can be used between 11 a.m.-2 p.m., and from 5 p.m.-dusk.

12. What is the process for showing a movie in the Russell House Theatre?

If you would like to show a movie in the Theatre, there is a specific process you need to follow. First, you will secure space in the Theatre, and then you will need to get written and signed permission to actually show the movie from the appropriate production company, or you must pay for the performance view of rights.

13. I have an off-campus speaker who is coming to speak at my event, is this permitted?

Yes, Off-Campus Speakers are permitted at events in the Russell House. You must provide the Event Services Office with the Full Name and Contact Information of the Speaker for us to keep on file. Click here to go to the University Policy on Off-Campus Speakers.

14. I would like to sell or distribute tickets to my event, is this possible?

Yes, there is a process for selling/distributing advanced tickets at the Russell House Information Desk. You will need to set up a meeting with the Event Services Coordinator to discuss your event, and your plans for selling tickets. There is a charge of $17, plus 3% of total sales will be deducted for Carolina Card Fees.

15. Can I have any restaurant come to cater my event in the Russell House?

Carolina Catering is the recommended caterer for events at the Russell House, click here to visit their website.

If you would like to use a restaurant/caterer other than Carolina Catering, please contact the Russell House Events Services Office at 803-777-8182 to find out more on how to get approval. Click here to find the University Catering Policies.

16. What are the options available to pay my event bill?

Student Organizations: If you have gone through the Russell House 5000 approval process, you need to take your confirmation sheet with the breakdown of expenses to the Office of Student Organizations, Campus Life Center Russell House 227 to have Allison Toney sign the funding approval line on your confirmation.

University Departments: You can pay your bill via intra-institutional transfer. You will just need to provide the correct University account on the signed confirmation when you turn it in.

Both Student Organizations and University Departments: If you plan to pay for your event via cash or check, you will need to bring your signed confirmation to Russell House Suite 218. Present your confirmation to the desk assistant and inform them how you plan to pay the bill. The desk assistant will give you a payment voucher to take along with your payment to the Bursar’s Office, and they will process your payment and give you an official university receipt (2 copies). Bring your confirmation and the official university receipt back to Russell House Suite 218, and the desk assistant will confirm your event.

17. How can I advertise for my upcoming event?

There are several ways to advertise for your events on campus within and around the Russell House. The Russell House has 3 display boards in the 2nd Floor Lobby that can be decorated for events. We have two digital displays that you can utilize. To find out more about these options, contact the Event Services Office at 803-777-8182.
• The brick wall on Greene Street across from the Russell House is available to hang advertising banners, and we also have bulletin boards within the Russell House to place ads as well. To find out more about these two options, visit the 2nd Floor Information Desk.

Click here to go to the University Policies for Hanging Promotional Material/Banners.

18. What are the rules for decorating for my event?

The Russell House prohibits hanging/taping or affixing anything to the walls within the Russell House. For event decorating ideas, please contact the Russell House Event Services Office at 803-777-8182.

19. Where can special guests/speakers/performers park?

Limited metered spaces are available on Greene Street and Bull Street. Additional spaces are available in the Bull Street Garage for $1/hour. You may also purchase a Parking Pass for special guests and speakers from the Event Services Office for $5.00. Parking is first come, first served and therefore spaces cannot be guaranteed.

20. Where should guests enter the Bull Street Garage?

From Bull Street enter the garage on Level Three. Take a ticket at the entrance gate and park on Levels Four, Five or Six. Take your ticket with you when you leave your vehicle. When you return to the garage, go to the attendant on Level Four to pay your parking fees. The attendant accepts Quarters, $1, $5, $10 bills. Your ticket will be validated after the charge has been paid. If you have a Parking Pass you may turn it in with your ticket for validation.