Arboretum Photography Policy

The EJC Arboretum is voted Best in the Valley for marriage proposals and is a beautiful garden setting for professional photographers to hold engagement portrait photo sessions.

photo of young couple sitting under a tree by the EJC Arboretum pond

Events at the Edith J. Carrier Arboretum are often photographed to record the occasion. Photos taken during the events can be used on the web page and brochures. Please let us know if you do not wish to have your image displayed on our websites and brochures. Please refer any concerns or questions to the Edith J. Carrier Arboretum. You can reach us by phone weekdays between 9am—5pm at (540) 568—3194.

Professional Photography Policy

A professional photography session is any two hour visit to the arboretum when photography is taken of or at the Edith J. Carrier Arboretum for hire or for a fee, or that will result in income for the photographer. The arboretum does not consider a photography session to be a professional session if the photography is an assignment for JMU students, taken by faculty or staff for university purposes, photographic art, or photography taken only for personal or family purposes. The professional photography use fee assists the arboretum to maintain its beauty as a photographic backdrop.

The fee is waived for professional wedding photography for weddings held at the Edith J. Carrier arboretum, but applies to all other wedding portrait sessions for weddings held off arboretum grounds, and individual or group portrait sessions, including sessions for high school graduations and proms. All visitor use regulations must be observed by professional photographers, including staying on trails and lawns and not standing or posing subjects in flower beds, in water features, or off the trails.

The arboretum reserves the right to interrupt and reschedule photo shoots for non-scheduled, walk-on, and/or group photo events that originate from outside agencies where the arboretum was not given advance notification and reservations were not made or when the shoots negatively impact an arboretum event. The arboretum staff will offer to assist professional photographers in completing a use request form and paying the fee. For support for area agencies' group photography activities at the arboretum, please contact the business office at (540) 568-3194 during normal business hours 9am—5pm, Monday—Friday.

A photo shoot pass will be issued by mail after the use fee is paid, that is to be shown to arboretum staff when requested. Payment may be made by phone using major credit cards, or check by mail payable to: JMU, "Arboretum Photography" in memo, MSC 3705, 780 University Blvd., Harrisonburg, VA 22807. Visit our link below to complete the on-line Professional Photography Use Request Form, or download a printable version. Cost per session $50. For photographers holding frequent photo shoots at the arboretum, the six session dates rate is $200. Faculty, staff and JMU alumni receive a 10% discount with employee or student ID number provided on the reservation form.

Online Form | Professional Photography Use Request Form

Thanks to Aaron Riddle (portrait) for generous use of his photographs.

Grounds open free to the public, dawn to dusk, 365 days a year.
The Arboretum offices in the Frances Plecker Ed Center are open weekdays. Calls and emails are answered from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm, except holidays. Check the website calendar for holiday closings.

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Directions to the EJC Arboretum
Edith J. Carrier Arboretum at James Madison University
(540) 568-3194
780 University Blvd, MSC 3705
Harrisonburg, VA 22807