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Meeting Rooms Policy

Cary Memorial Library welcomes public use of its meeting rooms in keeping with the library’s mission to provide the Lexington community with materials, resources and services that promote lifelong learning and cultural enrichment, free and open to all.

General Guidelines

Meeting rooms are available to civic, cultural, charitable and educational groups and organizations that have a substantial connection to the Lexington community and are engaged in activities consistent with the library’s mission.

Priorities for using the library’s meeting rooms have been established in keeping with the library’s mission and service goals:

  1. Library-sponsored programs and those offered by groups and organizations affiliated with the library
  2. Town of Lexington departments and committees
  3. ​Non-profit neighborhood and community-based groups, civic groups (such as Scout organizations and League of Women Voters), and non-profit and non-commercial organizations from the Town or serving the needs of the Lexington community

Meeting rooms may be used by political groups for meetings of an organizational nature. They may be used for public forums, debates, and candidates’ nights. Meeting rooms are not available for private meetings or functions such as parties or play groups. Meeting rooms shall not be used for commercial purposes, for the solicitation or development of business, or for profit.

Public use of the library’s meeting rooms must be subordinate to the need to provide a safe, peaceful and respectful environment in which to read and study. No use of the meeting rooms will be allowed that is likely to disturb library patrons in their customary use of library facilities, impede library staff in the performance of their duties, or endanger patrons, staff or the library building or collections.

In allocating the use of meeting rooms, the library and its Board of Trustees shall not discriminate on the basis of the political or religious beliefs of applicant groups, or on any other constitutionally or statutorily prohibited basis. The library does not advocate or endorse the viewpoints expressed during meetings or by meeting room users.

Exceptions to this policy may be made at the discretion of the library Director in consultation with the Board of Trustees as they deem in the best interest of the library and the community.

Available Rooms

Cary Memorial Library provides two meeting rooms that may be reserved:

Large Meeting Room - Lower Level

  • Seating up to 80 people
  • Equipped with kitchen, audiovisual, digital presentation, data network, and assistive-hearing capabilities.
  • See “Use of Library-owned Audiovisual Equipment,” below, for equipment list.

Learning Center – Lower Level

  • Seating up to 20 people
  • Equipped with data network capabilities

The library’s Oval Room, Lexington Room, and Genealogy Room may not be reserved for group or individual use.

The library provides small study rooms which accommodate 5 or fewer people. These rooms may be reserved up to one week in advance by contacting the Reference Desk.

Library meeting rooms are not equipped with telephones or fax machines. A public telephone is available on the Main level by the front entrance. A conference telephone may be requested when booking a meeting room.

Available Hours

Meeting rooms are available during regular library hours on those days that the library is regularly scheduled to be open. Meetings should end no later than 15 minutes before closing.

Applications, Reservations, Cancellations and Emergency Closures

  • Groups should first submit a Group Approval application. The library will notify the applicant group within one week.
  • Once approved, groups may then submit Meeting Room Reservation requests, available online.
  • Reservation requests must be made by adults (18 years or older).
  • Reservations must be made no more than six months and no less than 3 weekdays in advance of an event.
  • Reservations are considered in the order received.
  • Reservations may not be transferred or assigned to another group.
  • Changes or cancellations must be received at least 3 days in advance of the scheduled event; please use the suggested procedure. Groups that repeatedly cancel without proper notice or fail to use a reserved meeting room may lose their room use privileges for three months.
  • Library staff shall have the right to cancel, reschedule or transfer meeting room locations or dates that conflict with library sponsored programs and/or special events. In such cases, the library will make its best effort to give advance notice.
  • In case of an unscheduled library closing, such as weather-related closures, the library will make its best effort to notify group contact persons with the contact information on file. Such groups may reschedule another meeting time.

Library-Owned Audiovisual Equipment – Training and Use

Audiovisual equipment available in the Large Meeting Room includes:

  • LCD video projector and screen
  • Whiteboard (Library supplies markers)
  • Multimedia lectern containing:

Any person operating library equipment:

  • Must receive training from library staff prior to the scheduled meeting or event
  • Must be at least 18 years old

Please be aware that there may not be library staff available to assist with the equipment during a meeting or event. Groups are responsible for paying for the replacement or repair, at the library’s discretion, of lost, stolen, or damaged equipment.

Use & Care of Facilities - General Principles

All meetings, programs, and activities held in library meeting rooms must be free and open to the public.

Groups using library meeting rooms shall not:

  • Charge fees for program or course registration, admission, or refreshments/supplies (Classes offered through the Lexington Recreation Department and Lexington Community Education are exempt from this requirement)
  • Solicit or accept donations
  • Sell or promote any material or service for private profit or gain,
  • Engage in fundraising activities, except those groups that have arranged with the library to do so in support of library or Town of Lexington programs and activities, at the discretion of the library Director.

​Care of Facilities and Safety Considerations

  • Groups using meeting rooms may arrange the available tables and chairs as they choose, provided that all pieces of furniture are returned to their original positions at the close of the meeting. Furniture may not be moved into or out of either of the meeting rooms.
  • Food preparation is not allowed in the meeting rooms.
  • All food (previously prepared) and drink must be confined to the Large Meeting Room and adjoining kitchen or the Learning Center. Groups are responsible for cleaning up after use; leftover food should be removed by the organization.
  • Kitchen access is limited to groups using the Large Meeting Room.
  • State law prohibits smoking or use of alcohol or illegal substances in public buildings.
  • Due to safety, environmental and public health concerns, candles, open flames, incense, and similar items are not allowed.
  • Since the Large Meeting Room is also used as a gallery, art work displayed in that space should be treated with care and respect, and not moved or handled in any way.
  • Posting or mounting materials on walls, doors, or equipment is not allowed.
  • Groups are responsible for paying for the replacement or repair, at the library’s discretion, or lost, stolen, or damaged equipment and furnishings.
  • An appropriate number of adult sponsors must accompany groups of high school age and younger children.
  • Attendance at events should be limited to the maximum seating capacity of the meeting room. The library reserves the right to limit attendance at programs when needed and as appropriate.
  • ​The library’s Rules of Behavior apply to all activities within the library, including meetings, programs, and events held in the meeting rooms.

Other Considerations

  • Groups shall, at their own expense, procure any license or permit necessary for the conduct of their meetings.
  • Groups reserving meeting rooms assume full responsibility for providing and paying for special accommodations that are requested by participants in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
  • The library Director and Board of Trustees reserve the right to determine, in their reasonable discretion, whether any proposed use of a meeting room will require a police detail or other extraordinary police protection. In making this determination, the Director and Trustees may consider the contents of the application and such other information as they deem appropriate, such as the history of the group’s meeting room use in the library or the history of the group’s use of meeting facilities elsewhere, and may consult with the Police Department. If the Director and Board determine that police protection will reasonably be necessary, the group seeking to reserve the room shall be required to pay to the Town in advance of the meeting the anticipated cost of such police protection.
  • The name, address, and/or phone number of Cary Memorial Library may not be used as the official address or headquarters of organizations using library meeting rooms. In issuing posters, press releases, or other publicity, groups should make clear that their programs are not sponsored, co-sponsored or approved by the library. The following language may be added to programs listed in the library’s Calendar of Events: “This program has not been sponsored by Cary Memorial Library.”
  • The Town of Lexington, Cary Memorial Library, its Board of Trustees, the library Director, or employees assume no responsibility for the loss, theft, or damage of any property of any group, individual, or organization using library facilities.
  • Groups using meeting rooms agree to indemnify and hold harmless the Town of Lexington, Cary Memorial Library, and their employees, officer, agents, and representatives, from any and all suits, actions, claims, or demands of any nature arising out of or brought on account of any injuries or damages sustained by any person by a consequence or result of the use of the room, its furnishings, or its equipment.
  • ​Groups using meeting rooms will periodically be requested to re-register with the library.


Policy approved by the Library Board of Trustees – 10.17.12