The City of Chicago requires the completion of a Special Event(s) Permit Packet in order to host a neighborhood festival. These festivals can be a number of things, including large street festivals, 5Ks, outdoor fundraising events, and more. The application process can be onerous and confusing, so please contact my office with any questions.
Please note the following important changes to the special event permitting process and organize your event to avoid paying large processing fees:
DCASE will now charge a nonrefundable processing fee of:
- $100.00 if the application is submitted more than 60 days prior to the event;
- $200.00 if the application is submitted between 59 and 45 days prior to the event;
- $500.00 if the application is submitted between 44 and 30 days prior to the event;
- $1,000.00 if the application is submitted between 29 and 15 days prior to the event; and
- $2,000.00 if the application is submitted between 14 and 7 days prior to the event.
No application for a special event permit shall be accepted less than 7 days prior to the special event.
As of 2018, the CTA has implemented policies and procedures for outdoor special events that require
Alderman Arena also has internal guidelines for outdoor special events:
- Events must end no later than 10 PM on Friday and Saturday Nights.
- Sunday night events must end no later than 9 PM unless it is a holiday weekend. For events that fall on a national holiday weekend (e.g. Labor Day Weekend, Memorial Day Weekend, etc.), the event may go until 10 PM on Sunday and 9 PM the following Monday.
- For weekend events ending at 10 PM on Friday and Saturday and 9 PM on Sunday, alcohol sales must end 30 minutes prior to the end of the event to ensure festival-goers last drinks are consumed before closing. All other alcohol sale end times will be approved or denied based on the event and what it entails.
- Letters of support will not be issued until a completed packet is submitted to the office.
- Applicants must allow the Alderman’s office ample time to review completed packets prior to providing letters of support.
- In order to ensure this, please provide contact information when submitting packet for approval.
Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) has implemented policies and procedures for outdoor special events:
- All organizations interested in having CTA participate at their 2018 event must submit a written request
- Organizations should provide CTA ample notice of an event to safeguard the CTA resources needed
- Request must specify a priority for CTA’s participation at a parade, for CTA staffed information table, and/or for CTA brochures
- Priority is given to events held within the CTA service area
- CTA is a public entity funded by farebox and sales tax revenue. Therefore, CTA only participates in events not charging a participation fee.
- Kindly submit your request letter via email to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Information is available below if you are interested in advertising your community event on CTA buses and trains