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Special Events

 

Tulsa is a city that celebrates special events. This page includes the City of Tulsa's Special Event Permit Application and instructions developed to guide you through the permit process. Please read carefully.

Special Event Permit Applications requesting a street closure must be received by the City of Tulsa no later than ninety (90) days prior to the actual date of your event and may be submitted as early as one (1) year before your event. A street closing in conjunction with an event inside an adjacent auditorium, theatre or stadium must be received no later than forty-five (45) days prior to the event. Public outdoor events without a street closure (e.g. parking lot) must be received no later than forty-five (45) days prior to the event. 

In general, any organized outdoor activity involving the use of, or having impact upon, public property, public facilities, rights-of-way, sidewalks, street areas, or the temporary use of private property in a manner that varies from its current land use, requires a permit. Land use regulations may reference public outdoor activities on a parking lot or private property by the serving beer, wine or spirits (liquor), entertainment with live music, fireworks, amusement rides or inflatables, or which has the potential of impacting public property or public safety services. 


On behalf of the City of Tulsa, we thank you for contributing to the spirit and vitality of our community through the staging of your event. Best wishes for a successful event!

Updated November 4, 2021 | 5:57 p.m.

Carefully review the application rules and checklist. 

A Special Event Permit does not negate the additional requirements of obtaining the proper Health, Alcoholic Beverage, Tent, Park, Vendor, Sales and Amusement Ride Permits for an outdoor event. You will be responsible to contact the relevant agencies for other specific permits and/or licenses. A Special Event Permit is revocable.

  • Instructions: (Please read all instructions before setting up your account)
  • Register an account online to start the process.
  • Make sure the application is complete before you submit it as you cannot go back to correct it once submitted.
  • You can save the application as a draft to continue later when returning to your account and then submit it.
  • You can always return to your account and continue to upload the required documents even after the submittal.
  • An application for a Special Event Permit is deemed complete when the applicant has provided all the information required by the Special Events Coordinator, including any additional information required by other City departments.
  • During processing, you will receive up to three emails unless more information is required. There will be one email for review (reply accordingly), one email for agendas (Mayor and City Council) and one email for approval (issued permit).
  • A permit will not be issued until all requested/required documents are uploaded into the system portal.
  • Call (918) 576-5636, if you have questions or need assistance, or email the Special Events Coordinator

Major Event shall mean any Special Event organized and conducted that utilizes Public Rights-of-Way (streets, alleys, sidewalks). This could include using private property in conjunction with public property. The Major Event permit fee assessed shall be Two Hundred Twenty Dollars ($220 plus system fees). This fee is nonrefundable. 

Minor Event shall mean any Special Event organized and conducted that utilizes solely private property. The Minor Event permit fee assessed shall be Seventy-Three Dollars ($73 plus system fees). This fee is nonrefundable. 

Monthly Event shall mean any Special Event organized and conducted that utilizes public or private property for a recurring event and/or closure at the same location on multiple dates in the same calendar month, if no changes are made to the Site Plan and/or Traffic Control Plan. The Monthly Event permit fee assessed shall be governed by whether it is a Major Event or Minor Event.

  • The Following Activities are Exempt from the Special Event Permit Requirement:
    (1) Funeral processions by a licensed mortuary;
    (2) Activities conducted by governmental agency acting within the scope of its authority;
    (3) Lawful demonstration or picketing on sidewalks;
    (4) Demonstrations that do not involve the use of a street, vehicles, animals, fireworks, pyrotechnics or equipment (other than sound equipment);
    (5) Activities held inside a building or facility intended for such activities, unless occupancy or other factors require a Special Event Building Permit;
    (6) Activities conducted entirely within City of Tulsa public parks;
    (7) Neighborhood block parties conducted on a one-block residential street.
  • Although not required to obtain a Special Event Permit, an event organizer of an exempted activity is nevertheless required to comply with general regulations governing public safety and health. This includes not blocking access to buildings and parking lots and should allow pedestrians to pass.
  • People participating in events or demonstrations do not have permission to trespass private property. Electronic or written permission from the owner to utilize private property is recommended.

CITY SERVICE FEES: View any potential cost recovery fees for police, fire, and/or other city services, online.


 If you are placing a tent (includes inflatable type dome), canopy, stage, or scaffold, etc. on public property, private property, or parking lot, you may need a Tent Permit and/or Building Permit. Tents 400 square feet or less (e.g. 10 x 10, 10 x 20 or 20 x 20) do not require a Tent Permit. Tents over 400 square feet (e.g. 20 x 25 or larger - includes below tent groupings) do require a Tent Permit. If a tent permit is required, must obtain a tent permit before erecting a tent. Tent stakes driven into the ground, street or tent straps attached to poles are prohibited on public property. Please contact the One-Stop-Permit Center at (918) 596-9601. The tent permit application is available online and requires submittal of the application ten (10) days prior to the event. Review below Tent requirements:

Tents 400 square feet or less (e.g. 10 x 10, 20 x 20) not spaced per the below guidelines require a Tent Permit.

  1. 10 x 10 tents may be single or grouped up to 4 but must not exceed 400 square feet.
  2. 10 x 20 tents may be single or grouped up to 2 but must not exceed 400 square feet.
  3. Grouping of said tents must have an access space of 12 feet between any other group, tent and property line.
  4. 20 x 20 tents must have an access space of 12 feet between any other group, tent and property line.
  5. No smoking in any size tent (vendor and customers). Must post "No Smoking" signs.
  6. Tents with 2 or more covered sides or during dark hours must display illuminated "Exit" signs. Tent occupancy over 50 must have 2 exits. Tent occupancy over 500 must have 3 exits. Tent occupancy over 1,000 must have 4 exits.
  7. Tents must not block fire hydrants or FDC connections.
  8. Generators must be separated by 20 feet from tents.
  9. No cooking in tents unless separated by 20 feet from any other group, tent and property line.
  10. No food can be served or consumed in a tent used for cooking.
  11. Need 1 portable fire extinguisher (2A:10BC) for every 3,000 square feet of tent or within 75 feet of travel, whichever is greater.
  12. If a tent is to be placed against a building, prior approval must be obtained before erection of the tent. Contact the Tulsa Fire Department at firemarshal@cityoftulsa.org or 918-596-9422 for approval.

 If you are placing any entertainment inflatables (i.e. amusement ride, inflatable, climbing wall, etc.) on public property, private property, or parking lot, you will need a Certificate of Operation and provide the City of Tulsa with the contact information. The Oklahoma Amusement Directory link provided here.  The link to the Amusement Ride Program page herePlease contact the Oklahoma Department of Labor at (405) 521-6100For information go to www.labor.ok.gov.

If you are selling and/or serving beer, wine or spirits at your event, you must obtain a Public, Charitable or Special Event License from the Oklahoma ABLE Commission. In addition, provide plans to the City of Tulsa for outdoor beer, wine or spirits license premise enforcement prior to your event. Please contact the Oklahoma ABLE Commission at (405) 521-3484. The Public Event License is available online and requires submittal of the application sixty (60) days prior to the event.

  1. If your event is open to the public or is a private event in a venue location where spirits consumption is prohibited except with a special event permit, the City of Tulsa prohibits the consumption of spirits outside of a controlled space, commonly referred to as a "beer garden". Beer and wine may be consumed in public. 
  2. An event venue is an area that has been closed (e.g. street, sidewalk or parking lot) per a City of Tulsa Special Event Permit for the purpose of consumption of beer, wine, spirits and/or food and to provide space for bands, stages, tents, tables, inflatables and vendors, etc.
  3. designated licensed premise is an area within the event venue for the purpose of consumption of beer, wine, spirits and food, which may include space for tents, bands, stages, tables and vendors, etc. A designated licensed premise is required to prevent guests from leaving the controlled area with spirits or bringing outside spirits into the controlled area. Depending upon the venue, it may also separate guests of a legal drinking age from those who are not. Consumption of spirits outdoors requires a controlled space, commonly referred to as a "beer garden". Beer gardens must be constructed with material or in a manner that prevents spirits from being taken outside the controlled space or brought into the controlled space [e.g. six-foot (6') free standing chain link fence, crowd control barriers referred to as bicycle racks, tents, archways with overhead signage (No One Under 21 Allowed Beyond this Point - No Alcohol Allowed Beyond this Point), trash receptacles and staff, etc.]. Beer gardens are required for spirits but not for beer and wine. However, the event organizer is still responsible to enforce the designated licensed premise for beer and wine not leaving or coming into the controlled space.    
  4. designated bar area is an area within the designated licensed premise for the purpose of sales and service of spirits. A designated bar area must be constructed with material or in a manner that separate guests of a legal drinking age from those who are not [e.g. roping, tent, including overhead signage (No One Under 21 Allowed Beyond this Point), staff, etc.]

If you are selling, serving, or giving away anything consumable such as food or beverages including beer, wine or spirits at your event, you may need a Food Service Permit. Please contact the Tulsa Health Department Food Protection Services at (918) 595-4300. For information go to www.tulsa-health.org.

 If any type of sales will take place at your event, you must provide the following documentation online prior to your event being approved:

  1. Submit a list of all vendors at the event including business name, contact name, address, and telephone number.
  2. Oklahoma Vendors. Submit copies of sales tax permits of Oklahoma vendors at the event. Vendors must display copies of sales tax permits at the event.
  3. Out of State Vendors. If out of state vendors will be making sales at your event, you must obtain a special event sales tax permit from the Oklahoma Tax Commission and submit a copy of the permit to the City of Tulsa. To obtain a special event sales tax permit, please contact the Oklahoma Tax Commission Special Events Division at (918) 581-2399.
  4. At the conclusion of the event, the Special Events Sales Tax Form needs to be completed and submitted by each vendor.
At this time, there is no permit for a Drone within the City limits; however, all FAA regulations must be followed. Please review these Best Management Practices. In terms of safe operation, the most important factors are that the craft is flown in a space that is clear of bystanders, under 400 feet, and not within two miles of restricted airspace. Anyone that is on the ground under the craft should be involved with the operation of the craft or be made aware of the risk. Please register your Drone and send a copy of the license to the Special Events Coordinator.

If you are hosting any type of fighting and/or wrestling event, you will need to notify the Oklahoma State Athletic Commission at (405) 271-9444 X57993.

 If you are utilizing a City Park for your event, you will need a Park Permit. Please complete an online form. For River Parks, contact (918) 596-2001 and for County Parks (LaFortune, Chandler) contact (918) 596-5990.

 If you are organizing a daytime neighborhood block party involving a one-block residential street, you will need to complete a Working in Neighborhoods (WIN) application online thirty (30) days prior to the actual date of the block party. WIN will assist neighborhood block party organizers with the procedures how to access barricades, traffic control signage and other information.

You must provide adequate cleanup during and after your event. Failure to perform adequate clean-up immediately after the event each day within and around the outdoor venue including the adjacent streets, rights-of-way, alleys and parking lots and/or repair damages to city property and facilities due to your event will result in the City of Tulsa providing the services and billing the event organizer at cost recovery rates for clean-up and/or repair. Glassware is not allowed within and around the outdoor venue including the adjacent streets, sidewalks, rights-of-way, alleys and parking lots.

The person responsible for a community special event should provide recycling containers throughout the venue. Following are key elements:

  1. The number of recyclable containers at special events should be equal to the number of trash containers (a 1:1 ratio).
  2. Recycling and trash containers should be placed next to each other in areas throughout the event venue.
  3. Each recyclable container should be clearly identified as a recycling receptacle and display a list of recyclable materials accepted.
  4. The event organizer can determine the types of recyclables to be collected as long as the recyclables include all aluminum and metal cans, glass (glass is prohibited on public property) and plastic bottles and jars, and all mixed paper and cardboard.
  5. The event organizer must ensure that all recyclable materials are delivered to a recycling facility and not to a landfill. Please contact The M.e.t. at (918) 584-0584. For information go to metrecycle.com.

You must provide portable restroom facilities at your event unless you can substantiate the sufficient availability of both accessible and non-accessible facilities in the immediate area of the event site that will be available to the public during your event (e.g. one chemical or portable toilet for every 250 people). Ten percent (10%) of restroom facilities must meet local, state, and federal accessibility requirements. No less than one (1) accessible restroom should be placed in each location designated for restrooms facilities and located on a level area not to exceed a 2% cross-slope in any direction. If a single restroom unit is placed in a location, it must be accessible. An accessible route to each portable restroom must be provided. The number of portable toilets can be determined based on your estimated peak time attendance. Your local portable sanitation service contractor's experience will help you in planning properly for any event.

In most cases, issuance of a Special Event Permit will serve as your approval to use amplified sound within your event venue as outlined in your permit application.

  1. Unreasonably loud noise at any time of day or night (including music) is a violation of City Ordinance.
  2. A police officer that determines noise from your event is unreasonably disturbing to others may require you to lower the noise even though you have a permit allowing such use.
  3. Generally, sound (music) levels should not exceed 90 decibels 15 feet from the source.
  4. Depending upon any neighborhood complaints, the sound levels may have to be lowered between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. Information on City of Tulsa Ordinances is available online.

Applicant shall furnish the City of Tulsa, at least fifteen (15) business days in advance of the occupancy time of the permit, venue, escort, or road closure, whichever comes first, a certificate showing there is in force a general liability insurance policy with a bodily injury and property damage combined single limit of not less than $1,000,000 for each occurrence. Applicant shall include product liability insurance coverage in equal liability limits ($175,000 per individual and $1,000,000 per multiple individuals as the result of and single occurrence or accident) when concession sales are approved during the event. The applicant must be the named insured and the City of Tulsa must be named as an Additional Insured on the policies. The insurance company must be a company duly licensed to do business in the State of Oklahoma and listed in the Oklahoma 96th Annual Report and Directory of Insurance and Related Companies. The policy shall also provide for a minimum of thirty (30) days mandatory written notice to the City of Tulsa, in the event of cancellation or material alteration of the limits of the policy. Policies that show the City of Tulsa as an additional insured must include language to that effect in the Description Box. The name and date of the event must also be stated in the Description Box. Certificate of Insurance.

To better protect the rights and interests granted to Special Event Permit holders, to rationally regulate Special Events that have an impact upon public property, private property, facilities and City of Tulsa services, to manage traffic flow and parking, and to allow for emergency ingress/egress, there must be either a two (2) hour or two (2) block separation between Special Event venues that are requesting the same date, timeline and/or location. The 2-hour separation starts at the end of an event teardown to the start of another event set-up. The 2-block separation must allow for two-way traffic between the event venues, routes or courses. Event organizers may mutually agree to coordinate with each other without the 2-hour or 2-block separation but must be able to implement suitable detours, traffic control and allow reasonable access to businesses, facilities and residents including emergency ingress/egress and follow recommendations made by the Special Events Committee.