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Events In Madison Parks

Park Event Permits

The primary mission of Madison Parks is to provide residents and visitors with open space and facilities for recreation and relaxation. Under regulated circumstances, a park event permit can be used to reserve park space for a special event. The following park event application process is intended to help with the success of your event and insure the safety and general welfare of the public and event participants.

What makes a park use request a special event?

You must complete an application for a park event permit if any of the following items apply:

  • A large number of participants are expected.
  • The event will be promoted to the general public.
  • Admission will be charged.
  • A park not normally used for events, such as a neighborhood park or beach, has been requested.
  • Vending will occur.
  • The purpose of the event is to raise money, whether for a non-profit/charity or as a commercial venture.
  • The event will use extensive space in a park.

If you are not sure whether your event qualifies as a special event please email.


Prior to completing the Park Event Application, read the Park Event Instructions and review the Sample Permit. This document contains detailed information about the Park Event Application and is a good reference if you have any questions when completing the application. Complete and submit the Park Event Application to begin the process of reserving park space for your special event.

Application deadlines:

Please note the following timelines that are required for Park Event permit applications (we will assess a $250 late application fee if the deadline is missed):

At least 6 MONTHS (180 DAYS) - Approval by the Facilities, Programs and Fees Subcommittee and/or Board of Park Commission may be required.

  • New Park Events; based on complexity and size
  • Returning Park Events; with past permit violations or significant changes from the previous year

At least 2 MONTHS (60 DAYS)

  • Returning Park Events with no significant changes
  • New Park Events that are small, not very complex and do not have extensive setup

Please email to discuss your event if you are unsure which deadline your event needs to meet.

Neighborhood & Community Group Park Events

If you are a Neighborhood or Community Group planning an event in a park, visit Neighborhood & Community Group Park Events.