skip navigation
Share this:

Special Events Permits

This page provides sample policies regulating various special events in Washington State, including some private events that may impact traffic, street rights-of-way, and other public property.


Special events, such as fun runs, bikeathons, parades, and street fairs promote tourism, foster economic revitalization of downtowns and neighborhoods and provide cultural activities for residents. Other events such as neighborhood block parties help build community when properly controlled. Cities and counties normally encourage such events within an environment that allows for the excitement and fun anticipated, yet adequately provides for the protection of all participants involved.

Examples of Special Event Regulations

  • Anacortes
  • Bainbridge Island Municipal Code Ch. 12.06 – Parades and Assemblies - Covers traditional parades, fun runs, roadway foot races, fundraising walks or runs, auctions, bikeathons, parades, carnivals, shows or exhibitions, filming/movie events, circuses, block parties and street fairs
  • Battle Ground Municipal Code Ch. 8.36 – Special Event Permits - Provides requirements for obtaining permit and minimum standards for holding an event including posting a health permit if food is provided at the event.
  • Bellevue
  • College Place Municipal Code Ch. 12.04 – Special Events Activities - Governs events on a public street, park or other public grounds in the city
  • Coupeville Municipal Code Ch. 5.34 – Parades, Athletic Events and Other Special Events
  • Ellensburg Municipal Code Ch. 6.64 – Special Events - City streamlined its procedures in 2018
  • Fircrest Municipal Code Ch. 9.90 – Special Events
  • Friday Harbor Municipal Code Ch. 12.28 – Private Use of Public Property
  • Gig Harbor Municipal Code Ch. 5.28 – Special Events - Runs, parades, street dances, special events, or other demonstrations or exhibition
  • Issaquah Municipal Code Ch. 5.14 – Special Event/Special Use Permit - Fun runs, roadway foot races, fundraising walks, bikeathons, parades, carnivals, shows, exhibitions, circuses and fairs - includes events that occur on private property
  • Kirkland
  • Leavenworth Municipal Code Ch. 5.38 – Festivals - Includes provisions regulating food booths
  • Medina Municipal Code Ch. 9.40 – Special Events - Covers a temporary or ongoing activity organized by any individual or organization that affects the ordinary use of parks, public streets, rights-of-way, sidewalks, traffic, etc. and will generate or invite considerable public participation and/or spectators; cause or result in more than 50 people gathering in a park or other public place; or to have a substantial impact on a park or other public place.
  • Monroe Municipal Code Ch. 5.28 – Special Events - Includes events if held on private property, that affect public right-of way or of public property within the vicinity of the event.
  • Oak Harbor Municipal Code Ch. 5.55 – Special Event Permits
  • Poulsbo Municipal Code Sec. 5.04.090 – Business Licenses - Fee -Temporary and Special events - Requires master license for all special events to cover all dealers/vendors involved in the activity/special event.
  • Sequim Municipal Code Ch. 18.68 – Temporary Activities, Structures and Special Events - Any parade, festival, exposition, show, sale, party or other similar activity conducted wholly on public property or partly on public property
  • Snohomish Municipal Code Ch. 5.10 – Special Event Permits and Contracts - Requires contract with the special event sponsor
  • University Place Municipal Code Ch. 5.10 – Special Events - Covers a gathering of more than 50 persons on public facilities or public rights-of-way, or a gathering of any number that disrupts the ordinary and normal use of a public facility, right-of-way, or private street, subject to the exemptions listed. A special event shall include a gathering of more than 50 persons on privately owned property under certain conditions (enumerated).
  • Walla Walla Municipal Code Ch. 10.27 – Special Event Permits
  • Woodinville Municipal Code Ch. 8.12 – Provides regulations for special expressive events, special commercial events, (commercial sponsor (non-profits and businesses)), and special civic events (city-sponsored or citywide)
  • Woodland Ordinance No. 1517 (2022) – Adopting new regulations for designated special events involving city property, sidewalks, and/or streets, as well as events on private property with expected attendance over 75 people or that are likely to impact public streets and property

Examples of Special Event Permit Application Forms

Last Modified: January 20, 2023