Houston Food Bank Conference Center

Meeting and Conference Package


What is the HFB Conference Center?

The Houston Food Bank developed the HFB Conference Center at the Portwall facility to better serve our community and our donors.  The HFB Conference Center provides event and meeting spaces, with minimal facility usage fees. The facility can accommodate small meetings of 10 or less, or larger events of up to 400 people.

Who is eligible to use the HFB Conference Center?

HFB welcomes corporate groups, nonprofit, and professional groups. HFB also welcomes social groups on a case by case basis.

What kind of events cannot be scheduled in the HFB Conference Center?

·        Fundraisers

·        Press and Media Events

·        Political Activities

What is required to hold an event at the HFB Conference Center?

·        Signed Facility Use and Policy Agreement

·        Payment information added into your CaterTrax account

·        Certificate of Insurance with a minimum $1,000,000 general liability insurance (see Event Liability Insurance.) A tenant user TULIP policy may be provided (see Fee Structure.)

When is the HFB Conference Center open for events?

The HFB Conference Center is open during the following hours:

Conference Center Business Hours





Conference Center Closed


All official holidays (please inquire)



The HFB Conference Center also offers After Hours reservations for social events or extended corporate meetings. Additional fees apply (see Fee Structure.)

Conference Center After Hours







Where is the HFB Conference Center located?

The HFB Conference Center is located at 535 Portwall St. Houston, TX 77029.


Can I incorporate a volunteer activity for my event?

Absolutely! The Houston Food Bank operates primarily through our volunteer forces. Thanks to the assistance of volunteer groups, the HFB is able to provide food to nearly 600 hunger relief agencies in southeast Texas, which will feed 800,000 hungry people each week. If your group would like to incorporate a volunteer activity with your event, there are several productive activities that your group can participate in. We encourage all groups to participate in a volunteer experience. Any outside group that completes a full volunteer shift and orders catering from our 535 Catering will receive a discount of one complimentary hour applied to their room rental fees. (Catering order must be $120 or more.)

What can the Houston Food Bank provide for my event?


The Houston Food Bank offers a limited supply of equipment and furnishings, including audio/visual equipment and tables/chairs.  Audio/Visual equipment must be requested at least 3 days prior to the date of the event. AV equipment may be limited depending on the date, time, and space requested. In case of damage to HFB AV equipment, the client organization is responsible for reasonable and actual expenses incurred by the HFB in connection with the event.


The Houston Food Bank provides exclusive, in-house catering. ALL food and beverage services must be provided by 535 Catering and can be ordered through the client’s CaterTrax account. Confirmed catering orders must be completed at least 72 hours prior to the delivery date and time of your order.

No outside food and beverages will be permitted on the premises. Any client that brings in outside food and beverages without the express permission of the Catering and Conference Center Coordinator will be subject to a $250 cleaning fee.

Tours/ HFB Speaker/Presentation 

Indicate on your reservation that you would like to arrange a tour or a speaker and a HFB staff member will contact you to make arrangements


What are the different HFB Conference Center event spaces and capacities?

The HFB Conference Center offers spaces for meetings and events ranging from 10-400 attendees. The room descriptions and Fee Structure are listed on the following page. Please note that all room capacities are approximate and will depend on your seating and configuration preferences.

How do I get started?

1.      Review this packet and sign the Policies and Procedures Agreement.

2.      Create a customer account in our CaterTrax reservation portal: http://houstonfoodbank.catertrax.com

3.      An informative e-mail will be sent including the next steps to your reservation process.

4.      To order catering, return to your reservation on CaterTrax and click “Add Catering”

5.      Your dates/times will be secured upon receipt of the signed Polices and Procedures Agreement, payment information, proof of liability insurance, and confirmation by a Conference Center representative.




Meeting and Conference Fee Structure





˝ Day

(0-3 Hours)

Full Day


Community Room #130ABC




Community Room #130A




Community Room #130BC




Community Room #130B




Community Room #130C




Noble Energy Room #246




Simmons Foundation Room #245




Howard Cheek Room #252A




Bonner & George Ballroom #252B




CenterPoint Energy Room #257




Repack Room









Additional Fees and Services

After Hours Add-On Per Hour: (after 6pm)


Overstay Fee: time in conference room past reservation time (per hour, 1 hour minimum)



Cleaning Fee: if room is not cleaned according to guidelines or if outside food is brought into facilities



TULIP Insurance Policy: If proof of liability insurance cannot be provided by group



Stage: Skirted stage with or without stair steps (16w x 8d x16h)


Linens: All polyester: Ivory Rounds, Black Rounds, Black Rectangles

*not available for all events






Accessible Accommodations (ADA)

Houston Food Bank facilities are accessible for people with physical disabilities. To ensure that room setups and other logistical arrangements will accommodate all attendees, groups should advise the HFB when scheduling reservations if any attendees have special needs.

Alcohol Policy

Alcohol can be served at the HFB within the conference room if prior arrangements have been made with the Catering and Conference Coordinator. Alcohol must be provided by the client and brought to the HFB facility at least 24 hours prior to the reservation. We will provide a TABC certified server for the service of the alcohol at a rate of $75 per server per hour. Groups of 100 guests or less require one server. Groups greater than 100 attendees will require 2 or more servers.

Alcohol may not be sold for profit or fundraising purposes. No currency of any kind may be exchanged for alcoholic beverages. This includes cash, credit cards, raffle tickets, vouchers, etc. A fine of $300, plus a 20% service fee will be incurred if any currency is exchanged. Any unauthorized alcohol brought on to the premises will incur the same fee.

*All spills are considered a hazard and must be reported immediately. All incidents of violence or injury must also be reported immediately. Report incidents to the HFB Welcome Desk or the Catering/Conference Center Coordinator.


Only certified service animals are allowed on the HFB premises.

Cancellation Policy

Cancellations will receive full or partial refunds as detailed below:

2 weeks prior to event

Full refund

8-13 days prior to event

50% refund

7 days or less

No refund


*Additionally, in the event of any cancellation, the client organization agrees to reimburse the HFB for any reasonable and actual expenses incurred in connection with the event. This includes, but is not limited to rentals, food and beverages, staffing, etc.

Check-In/Check-Out Policy

The responsible representative must check in with HFB staff upon arrival and must be present during the entire meeting or event. Unless otherwise directed, the Catering and Conference Center Coordinator is your point of contact.

Prior to leaving the premises, the responsible organizer must check out with a Conference Center staff member to ensure that the room has been left as described in the cleaning procedures posted in the conference room. If the room is not left as described, or if the responsible party fails to check out with a Conference Center staff member, a cleaning fee will be incurred.


All children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by an adult or legal guardian to gain admittance into the Conference Center and must be chaperoned at all times while on the premises.

Concealed Weapons

With the exception of security and law enforcement officers, Houston Food Bank does not permit any persons to use or possess firearms or other weapons on their person, in their belongings, or on HFB property (including, but not limited to storage areas, desks, and equipment) on the HFB property or at any off-site HFB related functions.


All decorations must be approved prior to the meeting or event. Table top and free-standing decorations are permitted. Push pins, tacks, confetti, and tape are not permitted due to potential damage to walls and cleaning equipment. Any damage to walls or carpet will result in additional fees to be determined after analysis of damages.


No organization may use the Houston Food Bank facility for fundraising purposes unless the Houston Food Bank is the sole beneficiary. This includes, but is not limited to silent or live auctions, raffles, or galas.

Houston Food Bank Logo

All usage of the Houston Food Bank logo must be approved by HFB prior to being used for communications or promotional materials. HFB should not be listed as a sponsor or host in most cases.

In Case of Emergency

Houston Food Bank is a first responder to all natural disasters. In the case of a natural disaster, all events will be cancelled, and applicable fees refunded. In the event of a fire, all guests must proceed to designated emergency exits and evacuate the building. Please wait for instructions from HFB staff or authorities.

In the event of an ammonia leak, an ammonia alarm will sound, and all staff and guests are to proceed to the Repack Room on the first floor and wait for HFB staff or authorities to clear guests to exit the room. If the ammonia alarm sounds, DO NOT EXIT THE BUILDING.


Groups assume all responsibility, risk, and liability for all activities of the group, its employees, agents, invitees, contractors, subcontractors, or licensees, directly or indirectly conducted in connection with this agreement, including environmental and hazardous substance risks and liabilities, whether occurring during or after the term of this agreement. Facilities, including the rooms and premises are being used at group’s risk and any damages are groups responsibility. The group shall defend, indemnify, and hold harmless the Houston Food Bank, its employees, and agents from and against any and all suits, claims, actions, losses, costs, penalties, and damages of whatever kind or nature, including all attorney’s fees and litigation costs arising out of, in connection with, or incident to any act or omission by the group, its employees, agents, invitees, contractors, subcontractors, or licensees, unless the sole proximate cause of the injury or damage is the negligence or willful misconducts of the Houston Food Bank or anyone acting on the Houston Food Bank’s behalf. Within 15 days, the groups shall accept any such cause or action or proceeding upon tender by the Houston Food Bank.




Media/News Coverage

Groups shall request special approval to allow media coverage or news conferences on Houston Food Bank property. Request for media coverage must be made a minimum of 7 business days prior to the date of the meeting or event. A copy of news release must be given to HFB representative prior to the event for approval. The Houston Food Bank reserves the right to review meeting content when a group requests permission to allow media coverage. We also reserve the right to approve or decline media access to meeting facilities based on the topic compatibility with the mission of the Houston Food Bank or a risk to the HFB property, volunteers, or guests.

Occupancy Limits

Occupancy limits for the HFB meeting rooms will be enforced. Emergency exits should remain clear at all times. Groups are expected to cooperate with the HFB staff to maintain security of the buildings and grounds and to provide for the safety of all people visiting the conference center.

Additionally, conference room reservations must be appropriate to the occupancy limits of the rooms. Smaller groups may be relocated to an alternate room to allow larger groups to occupy a room with a larger capacity.


Parking is provided and is available at no charge. Groups are encouraged to park in the front parking lot near the main entrance. Overflow parking is available in the rear of the building. Any groups requiring overflow parking must coordinate logistics of group arrival with HFB staff prior to their event as guests will encounter security entrances in the overflow parking lot. Groups requiring special parking arrangements for busses or vans must also coordinate with HFB prior to the event date.


Use of professional photos for external promotional use by a client requires prior approval by HFB Communications staff.


Contact Information

Reservations/Catering: http://houstonfoodbank.catertrax.com

Catering/Conference Center Coordinator:  Rachel Black (832) 369-9295; rblack@houstonfoodbank.org

Volunteer Services:  Kathy Lipman (832) 369-9223; klipman@houstonfoodbank.org

Communications: Maggi Massad-Paradies  (713) 702-9004; mmassad@houstonfoodbank.org





Policies and Procedures Agreement


I, the undersigned, agree that I have read this Meeting and Conference Center package in its entirety and understand the policies and procedures described within. I agree to comply with all the policies and procedures described in this package and understand that failure to do so may result in certain fines and additional fees, including, but not limited to those specifically described within this packet.


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