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8110 Gatehouse Road, Falls Church, VA 22042

Request a Reservation: The Dome Experience at Inova

The Dome Experience, a free community program offered by Inova Heart and Vascular Institute (IHVI), is a unique educational offering that invites community members (ranging in age from teens to seniors) to witness open heart surgeries firsthand while learning how healthy (and not-so-healthy) lifestyles can impact their own heart health. The Dome program is especially popular with middle school and high school students, but other community members are welcome as well.
Students must be in at least seventh grade.


Due to the extremely high demand for this program, we may need to limit the number of Dome visits awarded to a single school or organization. This is a free program with a limited calendar of available surgery-days, so we must do our best to give all students and community members an equal chance to attend. Attempting to game the system will result in a withdrawl of Dome invitations for future visits.

School groups

Each teacher or group leader must fill out this form separately and must use their official school email address. To ensure fairness for everyone who may wish to visit the Dome, limits may be placed on the total number of Dome sessions given to any one school.

Maximum group size

Each Dome session can accommodate up to 25 individuals total. The total number of people, including all chaperones and students, cannot be greater than 25. Please plan carefully if you are requesting a reservation for a class.

Rules of the Dome

RESPECT OUR PATIENTS: The cases presented in the Dome are real, lifesaving surgeries. As such, the Dome is not to be used for a social gathering or casual drop-in. Our wait lists are very long, so do not take a Dome session for granted – sign up only if you are certain you can come, and let us know immediately if you know you cannot attend. 

SCHEDULING: Due to the nature of healthcare and live surgery schedules, a Dome session may be cancelled without notice due to surgical schedules, hospital emergencies, or individual patient cases. 

TEACHERS: Teachers are NOT authorized to make the Dome a required part of their school curriculum because we cannot guarantee enough dates to accommodate all the classes who wish to attend.

ADVERTISING: Schools, adult-learning programs, and any non-Inova organizations are NOT authorized to advertise the Dome in their print or online course lists.   

Because a very small and dedicated staff at Inova provides free access to the Dome as a unique community service, we must ask all visitors to respect our hospital, our rules, and our patients' lives. Thank you – we look forward to meeting you at the Dome.

Ready to request your visit to the Dome?

Please fill out the form below and we will begin processing your request. Submitting this form is not a guarantee of a particular date and time. Thank you for your interest in the Dome.

*The total, including all visitors and chaperones, cannot exceed 25.
Please give us your day of the week preferences (check all that apply)
*Please note there is no Dome on Wednesdays or weekends.
Please provide your time of year preferences (check all that apply):
Please provide any additional information we may need to process your request.
Yes, I agree