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The Special Events Guide has been developed to guide organizers through the Citywide special event permitting process by providing an overview of the guidelines and requirements associated with special event management in the City of Santa Barbara. This is an important reference guide as you develop your event plans and complete your permit application.

Cover of Special Events Guide

View special events planning guide as a PDF

While it is important to familiarize yourself with the entire guide, quick-reference PDF files of key topics found in the special events guide have been created for your convenience:

Accessibility Requirements

Alcohol Served on City Property

Amplified Music and Sound

ATM Machines

Cancellation Policies

Event Cleanup

Fees, Fines, and Payment Deadlines

Food and Beverages at Events

Generators and Utilities


Insurance and Indemnification Requirements

Mandatory Meetings

Neighborhood Notification

Ocean Activities

Parking and Transportation

Permit Approval Criteria

Permit Denial, Revocation, and Appeal Process


Site Plan and Route Maps

Street Closures


Trash and Recycling

Vendors at Events

What Is a Special Event?

There are a number of different special event related permits and compliance items that may be required for the event by City departments, County, State and/or Federal agencies. The proposed event venue, activities, components, attendance, and unique circumstances of the event are contributing factors to the final determination of these additional permitting requirements. 

Special Event Permits and Compliance Items

Last Updated: Dec 8, 2020
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