City of

Community Events In Madison Parks
Temporary Structures
Temporary structures are tents (larger than a 10’ x 10’ pop up), staging, trailers, inflatables, and dunk tanks. Because of the increasing number of underground utilities and the potential danger to the public or property from them, the Parks Division must be involved when any temporary structure is installed that penetrates the ground in a public park. In addition, Wisconsin Statute 182.0175 requires anyone who is responsible any type of ground penetration or excavation to provide advance notice to Digger’s Hotline.

Diggers Hotline is a statewide one-call notification system which provides advance notice to public utilities of intended
excavation which may impact underground and overhead utility service.

A permit is required for the placement of any of these temporary structures in a Madison Park. However, you are only required to contact Digger’s Hotline if the ground will be penetrated by stakes, tools, or equipment. No permit is required for the placement of chemical toilets, volleyball nets, or pop-up tents that are 10’ x 10’ or smaller. Also, no permit is required for inflatables 15’ x 15’ or smaller, provided they are anchored without stakes.

The following steps must be taken before any Temporary Structures that require stakes for anchoring or installation are erected:
  1. Park Event Temporary Structure Permit Application
    Please answer all the questions fully and accurately. Mark the park map to show where structures will be placed. Return the completed application, with the site map and your payment, at least 5 business days prior to your event. The permit fee is $200, plus $30/day for each successive day.

  2. Digger’s Hotline, 1-800-242-8511
    Call Digger’s Hotline no earlier than 14 days before your event, and no later than 5 working days prior to the event. You MUST meet this timeline. There are no exceptions.

    Digger’s Hotline will assign a Ticket Number for each area where the ground will be penetrated. You must furnish this number to the Parks Office at least 5 days prior to your event. Fax (608) 267-1162, or call (608) 264-9289. Be sure to give us your name, the name of the event, the park site, and the date that the structures will be installed.

  3. Insurance
    A certificate of insurance is required for tents or temporary structures. The following rental agencies have insurance on file with us which meets the City of Madison’s requirements:
    A-Z RentAll, Bucky’s Tent Rental, Capital City Tent Rental, Gallagher Tent & Awning, Just Jumpin’ LLC, and Kangaroo Hop
    If you rent from one of these businesses, you do not need to provide insurance for the temporary structures. Otherwise, please contact the City of Madison’s Risk Manager, Eric Veum, at (608) 266-5965 for information on what coverage is necessary.

Fire Department Requirement

A permit from the Madison Fire Department is required to operate an air supported temporary membrane, a tent having an area in excess of 200 square feet, or a canopy in excess of 400 square feet. Please contact the Fire Department’s Fire Prevention Division at (608) 266-4420 for more information. If you have any questions about this process, please call the Parks Office at (608) 266-4711.

Related Forms


Phone (608) 266-6033 or email Madison Events

Contact Us    Email Madison Events | Phone (608) 266-6033 | Go to City of Madison Parks