Terms and Explanations to Help You Fill Out Your Application

ADA & Accessibility
ADA stands for Americans with Disabilities Act. It is the responsibility of the event organizer to ensure the event site is accessible to the disabled. Public sidewalks may not be blocked with tents, portable toilets or other structures; cables or electrical cords must not create an obstacle; ADA accessible parking and portable toilets must be available. Organizers should be prepared to meet any accessibility accommodations.

Alcohol Service
If you are selling or serving alcohol, contact the Phoenix Licensing Services at 602-262-4638, TTY 602-262-4638 and the Arizona Department of Liquor License and Control at 602-542-5141, TTY 602-542-2806 to obtain information on a City and State Special Event Liquor License. Information can also be obtained on the Arizona Department of Liquor License and Control website at: http://www.azliquor.gov/. This is normally a 60 day process and will also require liquor liability insurance. If there are fees or donations associated with your event, a special events liquor license is required.

This must be the chief officer or a representative of the event organization who has been authorized by the organization to complete the special event application.

Application Process and Approval
Once the application is received it is reviewed by City staff and a meeting will be scheduled with city staff and the event organizer. A minimum of ninety (90) days or more is requested for the approval of special events. Once your event has been approved or denied, you will be contacted by the event liaison.


  • New Events: Applications are accepted 11 months out from event. 
  • Recurring Events: Applications are accepted 13 months out from event. Once event is  held, event organizer has up to 30 days after the event to secure date for following year before it is released for other events.

Bleacher / Stage Construction Permit
Information is available from Phoenix's Planning and Development Dept. by phone at 602-262-7884, TTY 602-534-5599 or online at: http://www.phoenix.gov/pdd/index.html.

Business License Requirement
All businesses affiliated with your event that sell a product must obtain a City and State Privilege (Sales) and Use Tax License. For more information, please call Phoenix Licensing Services at 602-262-6785, TTY 602-534-5500 and Arizona Department of Revenue at 602-542-4576, TTY 602-542-4021. Information can also be obtained online at: www.revenue.state.az.us.

City Park
If your event also requests the use of a City of Phoenix park, you shall be responsible for contacting the specific park division. Park locations and divisions can be found online at: www.phoenix.gov/parks.

All entities or organizations without documented non-profit status awarded by the State of Arizona.

Decibel Levels
A decibel is a unit for measuring the relative loudness of sounds. Decibel level shall not exceed 100 per city ordinance. (See Noise and Amplified Sound).

Effective May 1, 2008 a $400 Special Event Application for Right-of-Way fee applies to submit this application. There may be fees assessed for some city services, permits, park areas, and support services. As a standard the city does not waive fees. The Special Event Application fee for Right-of-Way is non-refundable whether your application is approved or not.

Fireworks / Pyrotechnics Permit
Information is available from the Fire Department's Fire Prevention Section by phone at 602-262-6771 or online at: http://www.phoenix.gov/fire/prevention/index.html.

Food / Beverage Service
If your event will have food and/or beverage services contact the Maricopa County Environmental Services Department at 602-506-6978, TTY 602-506-6704 to receive specific guidelines. You can also obtain information on their web site at www.maricopa.gov/envsvc For information on use of fire and open flame contact the Phoenix Fire Department, Fire Prevention at 602-262-6771 or online at: http://www.phoenix.gov/fire/prevention/index.html.

Formal Agreement
Upon approval, a number of conditions will be identified as part of an appropriate Letter of Understanding or Letter of Agreement. These conditions must be followed during the course of your event. These conditions are to be adhered to by the applicant and any vendors or
subcontractors involved in the event. Failure to submit a signed letter and/or comply with the conditions can result in cancellation of the event, fines (cost recovery for unscheduled or emergency city services), and denial of city property for future events.

Generators / Electrical Permit
Information is available from the Phoenix Planning and Development Dept. at 602-262-7884, TTY 602-262-534-5599 or online at: http://www.phoenix.gov/pdd/index.html.

All the proper insurance documentation must be received by the Parks and Recreation Department event liaison at least two weeks prior to the event. Failure to comply with insurance requirements will result in the forfeiture of the use of city property for the event. Please read the Insurance Specifications and Indemnification Guidelines.

Mechanical Carnival Games / Rides
These activities require a regulatory license. Information is available from the Phoenix City Clerk's Licensing Services Division by phone at 602-262-4638, TTY 602-534-2734 or online at: http://www.phoenix.gov/cityclerk/services/licenseservices/index.html.

Medical Assistance
Medical response is the responsibility of the event organization. The city may require specifics for medical personnel at your event. Fees are charged for the use of Phoenix Fire Department personnel and services. Information is available from the Fire Department's Fire Prevention Section by phone at 602-262-6771 or online at: http://www.phoenix.gov/fire/prevention/index.html.

Neighborhood Notification
The applicant is required to notify all residents, businesses, places of worship and schools that are impacted by street closures and/or noise related to your event. Notification boundaries will be determined by City staff and are typically ¼ mile surrounding the event or route. All residents, businesses, places of worship and schools within that boundary area must receive a notification. See an example notification format. An example notification must be submitted to the Parks and Recreation Department event liaison for review prior to notification delivery. Once approved, the notice must then be mailed or hand delivered to designated impacted areas at least two weeks prior to your event (or sooner per the level of impact of the event). Information on the notice should include, but not be limited to; the name of the event, date(s), time(s), location, the assigned Police Traffic Sergeants name and phone number (if applicable), type of activity and telephone number of where the public can contact your organization for concerns or issues. Direct phone calls and attendance to neighborhood association meetings may also be required. Failure to comply with notification requirement may result in the forfeiture of the use of city property for the event. Verification of neighborhood notification is required.

Noise and Amplified Sound
If your event has amplified sound the Police Department or City representative may make the determination that noise from your event is disruptive to others, and may require you to lower or discontinue the noise. Also, they may order entertainment to cease if it incites a crowd or has the potential for unruly or risky behavior. Failure to comply will result in cancellation of your event. (See Decibel Levels).

An entity or organization that has been recognized as tax exempt by the Internal Revenue Service and is in good standing. A copy of the IRS tax exemption letter will be required and verified.

Outdoor Assembly
Permit is required if the projected attendance is 500 or more persons or confines 50 or more attendees by permanent/temporary barricades or fencing. The Phoenix Fire Department's Fire Prevention Section issues Outdoor Assembly permits. Additional information is available online at: http://www.phoenix.gov/fire/prevention/index.html.

Onsite Contact / Phone Number
This is the name and cellular phone number of a person who will be at the event and can be contacted if needed during the event.

Parking / Shuttle Plan
Describe the parking plan for event staff, vendors, volunteers, participants and spectators.

The City reserves the right to prohibit or place detailed restrictions on future events held on City right-of-way due to unsatisfactory past performance.

Public Contact Name / Phone Number
Information from your application is considered public information and may be used in developing a calendar of community events. The name and phone number is to be publicized for responding to citizen questions and concerns before and after the event.

Publicity Plan
This is a description of how you intend to inform the public about your event. It can be brief and general. Please include the date you intend to start publicity. It is strongly suggested that publicity not start until you have secured event approval.

Reference Checks
Reference checks will be conducted for all new events.

City streets and sidewalks are defined as public right-of-way (ROW). Right-of-Way Management Program (RMP) for City of Phoenix must be followed. Completed RMP form must be submitted. Form can be obtained by calling 602-262-6235, TTY 602-256-4286.

Security requirements vary widely for different events. Security needs are evaluated by the Police Department with the authority to recommend the level of security as deemed necessary. Phoenix off–duty officers can be secured by calling 602-262-7323, TTY 602-262-6151.

Set-up / Tear-down
This will describe the time or area needed for setting up and tearing down the event. Please include the hours anticipated for both set up and tear down. If your event requires sound checks, the time(s) and date(s) of sound checks must be included in your application.

Site Plan and/or Route Map
To ensure proper review of your event, a site plan must be submitted at the first scheduled planning meeting. This is applicable for moving routes and fixed venues. Please include all portable structures, restrooms, stages, bleachers, tables, tents, fencing, trash containers, dumpsters, food areas, beer gardens, generator locations, etc. in your plan. Identification of all event components must meet accessibility standards. A narrative should supplement your site plan or route map.

Sponsor / Promoter
An entity or organization that assumes full responsibility for the production of the event including staffing, funding, planning and full liability.

Tent / Canopy Permits
If you are erecting a tent in excess of 800 square feet, or a canopy in excess of 1200 square feet, you must obtain a tent/canopy permit from the Phoenix Fire Department Fire Prevention Section. Call 602-262-6771 or go online to http://www.phoenix.gov/fire/prevention/index.html for more information. Tents/canopies are required to be weighted with sand bags, water barrels, or alternative weight. Staking is not permitted without special permission.

Traffic Plan / Street Closures
If there are any requested street closures, a detailed Traffic Control Plan (TCP) is required from a professional barricade company certified to do business within the city of Phoenix. This detailed plan shall include all the routing plans for traffic and barricades. This plan must be approved by
the Street Transportation Department before the event can be held.

Trash Removal
Describe the plan for removing trash generated by the event. This plan must include removing trash generated by the event that filters into areas surrounding the event, the neighborhood and on parking lots used by the event patrons and/or spectators. The plan should include clean up during and after the event. Fines may be imposed for unscheduled and/or emergency services to clean the site. The City reserves the right to require the applicant to provide additional trash receptacles and/or roll-off bins for the event. Any costs would be incurred by the event organization.

Vertical Banners
If you would like to request putting up vertical banners on Central Avenue to advertise your event, please contact the City of Phoenix Streets Department at 602-495-0575 to receive an application to advertise on city streets. If you're holding an event in downtown Phoenix, contact the Downtown Phoenix Partnership at 602-254-8696.


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