Consider the following sentences:
- “Want close parking to the venue and priority exiting from the parking lots at the end of the event?”
- “Imagine a venue capable of hosting everything from traditional weddings, Baroque chamber music recitals, and Shakespearian drama to modern dance….”
- “Please take the Clean Concert Pledge by clicking on the link below, and let’s keep this venue and others clean for everyone to enjoy!”
Formerly, venue has always referred to the locality where a trial is held or the scene of a crime. Use of the word by event marketers (an online search turned up hundreds of examples like those above) is relatively recent.
This looser use of venue is somewhat pretentious — as if calling a catering hall or nightclub a venue will make it more impressive.
In most cases, a simpler word will suffice, such as location, place, point, scene, or spot.
Some years ago a lexicographer friend archly told me, “Your hotel room isn’t a venue. If a murder were committed there, it would be a venue.”[Ed Note: For more than three decades, Don Hauptman was an award-winning independent direct-response copywriter and creative consultant. He is author of The Versatile Freelancer, an e-book that shows writers and other creative professionals how to diversify their careers into speaking, consulting, training, and critiquing.