Events & Fundraising

Event Permits

When your neighborhood association plans to hold events (picnics, festivals, parades, concerts, dances, fireworks displays, fundraisers, etc.), appropriate City agencies must be notified and permits obtained in advance of your event. City notifications and permits are required to ensure public safety and protect the public interest. Depending on event activities, more than one permit may be required.

How To Get Started:

v     Prepare an event outline. Prepare an outline of the event that specifies place(s), day(s), time(s), activities, if and how you plan to raise funds at the event, and any required equipment (like tables, chairs, or tents).

v     Review Event Permits Table and contact appropriate City agencies. The table on the following page indicates City agency contacts for event permits. Contact the City Clerk’s Office for more information.

Contact:

City Clerk’s Office

City-County Building, Rm. 103

210 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.

Madison, WI 53703

Phone: 266-4601 Fax: 266-4666

e-mail: clerk@cityofmadison.com 

 

Successful Implementation: Annual Broadway-Simpson Pride Festival

“The Broadway-Simpson Pride Festival,” explains Fannie Mims, President of the Broadway-Simpson Neighborhood Association (BSNA), “is a collaborative effort by BSNA, residents, property owners, businesses, service providers, institutions, and elected officials.” The annual Pride Festival held each Spring celebrates the achievements of people, especially youth, who have made improvements in their lives and the community. Organizing the festival, says Mims, requires dividing planning duties among many organizers. Festival organizers outline the day’s events, what will be required to make the event run smoothly, and what permits will be needed by when. Festival planning duties include: securing insurance coverage; obtaining food and solicitation permits; organizing games and activities for children; and soliciting donations of money, food, and raffle prizes from local residents and businesses. “The City Clerk’s Office is the best place to start,” says Mims, “when an organization is planning a neighborhood event. Since we spend time at the beginning to determine the permits we need, it leaves me and other organizers with plenty of time to plan out other parts of the Pride Festival instead of scrambling around at the last minute.” Obtaining event insurance is another important step. Events can be insured under an existing organization’s policy, such as the neighborhood association or another non-profit organization. The Broadway-Simpson Neighborhood Center covers the Pride Festival under its insurance policy. In addition to games for children, the Pride Festival features youth awards for achievements in school and the community, visits by the Oscar Mayer Weinermobile and a City fire truck, food cooked by neighborhood residents, hourly raffle drawings, and informational booths. BSNA has a booth to explain neighborhood association activities, accept donations, solicit membership sign-up, and distribute a neighborhood resource booklet.

Fundraising Permits

Fundraising helps neighborhood associations publish neighborhood newsletters, organize neighborhood events, and implement neighborhood improvement projects. Individuals and neighborhood associations are required to obtain appropriate City permits prior to fundraising activities. Permits are required for both soliciting (asking for donations) and selling (asking for money in exchange for goods or services) on both public and private property. Some fundraising permits require a fee, but most neighborhood associations qualify for a no-fee Group Solicitation Permit. Contact the City Clerk’s Office for more information.

How To Get Started:

v     Prepare a fundraising plan. Identify how you plan to raise funds (i.e., by requesting donations and/or selling a product); where you plan to conduct fundraising activities (i.e., door-to-door, in a public park, or at a particular event); and the persons who will be involved in your fundraising activities. 

v     Contact the City Clerk’s Office. The City Clerk’s staff will help you obtain the required permits.

Contact:

City Clerk’s Office

City-County Building, Rm. 103

210 Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd.

Madison, WI 53703

Phone: 266-4601 Fax: 266-4666

e-mail: clerk@cityofmadison.com

 

Special Events Permits Table

Activity

Permit

Fee

Deadline

Agency to Contact*

Events in a City Park

Must contact Parks Division for approval/permits

Fees generally required

30 days

Parks Division

Equipment Rental for Park

Permit(s) possibly required

Fee(s) possible required

10 days

Parks Division

Amplified Music in Park

P.A. Permit

$40 per 4 hours

10 days

Parks Division

Park Shelter Reservation

Must make advance reservation

$48/day-weekends and holidays

$30/half day-weekends and holidays

$35/day-weekdays

10 days

Parks Division

Tent or Canopy in park

Temporary Structure Permit

$95/day

10 days

Parks Division

Tent or Canopy not in park

Permit, Fire Inspection

$0.01/sq.ft

7 days

Clerk’s Office

Merchandise Sales or Donation Solicitations by Non-Profit Group**

Group Solicitation Permit

No Fee

7 days

Clerk’s Office

Merchandise Sales by For-Profit Group or Individual

Street Vendor License

$60/yr/person

$30/mo/person

$10/day/person

7 days

Clerk’s Office

Food Sales

Temporary Restaurant License, Health Inspection

$45/first day in calendar year; $10/each add’l day

7 days

Clerk’s Office and Public Health

Alcoholic Beverage Sales

Temporary Class B Retailer’s License

$10/day

3 days-outdoor

7 days-indoor

Clerk’s Office

Fireworks

Fireworks Permit

$50 per event

10 days

Clerk’s Office

Bonfire

Bonfire Permit

$50 per event

10 days

Clerk’s Office

Dancing

Dance Hall License

$25/day

Requires Common Council Approval

Clerk’s Office

Street Closure

Street Use Permit

$50/day

14 days for non-bus route street closure; 30 days for bus route street closure

Clerk’s Office

Parade, Walk, or Run in Street

Parade Permit

No Fee

14 days

Police Dept.

100+ Chairs

Tent Permit

$50 per event

10 days

Fire Dept.

Port-a-Potties

No Permit, but need one handicapped-accessible stall

No Fee

In advance of event

Public Health

*      For phone/fax numbers and e-mail/street addresses, see the City Agency Directory at the end of this publication

**   Most neighborhood associations are considered non-profit by the City Clerk’s Office. This determination is made at the time of permit application at the City Clerk’s Office Above information is subject to change without notice.

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