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Frequently Asked Questions

We are a non-profit or charitable organization. Can't we get the City facility or permits for free or at a discount?

No. The vast majority of the events held in the City's parks and on State Street are by non-profit organizations. The City's fees are established in order to recoup the real costs of hosting your event in a city park or street. The current fees are included in the Special Event Packets so you may set up your event's budget. It is suggested that when you are setting up sponsorships for your special event, you factor in not only the costs of the entertainment, t-shirts, etc., but also the cost of the permits, equipment, park and shelter rental.

How can we organize a fundraising event on the 700/800 blocks of State Street?

It will require a Street Use Permit and minimum of 30 days advanced planning.

May I distribute information about my student group, important cause, public event...?

Yes, as long as there is no amplification, no tables are set up, city vendors are not displaced and pedestrian pathways are not obstructed.

May I hand out coupons or information about a product or service on State Street or in a City Park?

No. MGO 23.04 prohibits this type of distribution anywhere in the City of Madison.

May I set up a food cart or sell crafts on State Street?

Please contact the Downtown Vending Coordinator at (608) 261-9171.

May I set up a food cart or sell crafts in city park?

In order to do so, you must have a Park Vendor Permit AND approval from City Parks Staff.

May our group put up a sign or banner about our event in a City Park?

Only signs advertising an event held in a park are allowed. And Event Organizers must have City Park Staff approval (call 266-4711). Signs are never allowed in a public right-of-way.

We want to organize a rally from the Library Mall to the Capitol. How do we do that?

See Rallies & Marches.

Helpful Resources

Parks & Facilities Available for Reservation

Important Phone Numbers

Diggers Hotline: