“Located in the heart of the county, the Orange County Convention & Expo Center (OCCEC) serves as the perfect event destination. Whether you are visiting us as a planner, an exhibitor, an attendee or a member of the community, the OCCEC is committed to making your experience with us a success. Come and find out for yourself why we are known as ‘Orange County’s Center of Hospitality,’” states the guidelines for the OCCEC presented for action at commissioners’ court this week. The approval of this 27 page guideline brings the county that much closer to unveiling the newest multi-purpose building in the area. Commissioners still need to decide if they will set up a new department to handle the management and rental of the convention center.

The policy committee attempted to cover all foreseeable situations, but know there will still be instances that will need to be dealt with on case by case basis.

The OCCEC includes the 57 thousand square foot main portion of the building that will house the Texas AgriLIFE offices along with Code and Compliance, Road and Bridge and Emergency Management.

The 10,800 square foot convention center, 841 square foot DuPont Meeting Room and the 841 square foot Special Purpose Room will be available for rent by the public and nonprofits.

“Our vision is to constantly earn our reputation as one of the area’s finest convention and entertainment venues,” said the guideline book.

There will be many areas that require use of specified vendor partners such as catering and audio/video setup and equipment.

Many restrictions are the same as most venues such as: no adhesive-backed decals; no throwing confetti, glitter, or rice; no tape accept low adhesive non damaging cloth gaffer’s tape. Air-filled balloons may be used for decoration, but no helium balloons will be allowed in the facility. Window clings are approved on a case-by-case basis. Only non-permanent and water-soluble markers or chalks easily removed by a wet mop are permitted to mark floors for layout. No markers or chalks are to be utilized on carpeted areas at any time.

Flame effects and pyrotechnics are not allowed. All special effects using fog, smoke, or haze machines require prior approval. Due to advanced fire alarm systems, use of these machines may be prohibited in some areas of the OCCEC.

Any damages caused by not following the guidelines will result in additional charges to restore the facility.

Alcoholic beverages are not permitted for sale on the OCCEC grounds. Alcohol can be provided free of charge or bring your own bottle (BYOB). No alcoholic beverages are allowed at any function honoring a minor.

There are specific requirements regarding security.

Rental rates established by the committee are as follows:  public/nonprofit/capacity – Ballroom $1,500/$750/700; Ballroom Section 1 $425/$225/175; Ballroom Section2 $425/$225/175; Ballroom Section 3 $525/$325/175Ballroom Section 2&3 $750/$400/350; DuPont Room $275/$150/25; Special Purpose Room $275/$150/25; and Main Classroom $300/$175/40

Table and chair rental rates per day: Round tables $6, Rectangular tables $4, chairs $0.50.

A clean-up charge of $25 man/hour will be charged for those not leaving the facility clean.

This is a very condensed list of the guidelines and rates approved. Client event information and Web links will be listed on the Orange County Convention and Expo Center calendar Web site at: www.orangecoexpo.com when the Web site goes live.

The Orange County Convention and Expo Center will accept Cash, Checks, Visa and MasterCard for all payments. Payment for rent, services and/or equipment is due in full seven (7) days prior to move-in. Any applicable refunds will be granted in the manner in which payment was received. Cash payments will be refunded by check.

The facility is located at 11475 F.M 1442 one mile south of Interstate 10.

The Record will keep you informed of when and how to rent the facility when the county finalizes all the details and starts accepting reservations.

About Penny LeLeux

Penny has worked at The Record Newspapers since 2006. A member of the editorial staff, she has "done everything but print it." Most frequently she writes entertainment reviews and human interest stories, with a little paranormal thrown in from time to time.She has been a lifelong member of the Orangefield community.