Special events planning

Special events bring people together to have fun, to mark important events, or to work towards a higher purpose.

  • Responsible leadership
  • Careful planning
  • Good organization
  • Provisions against the unexpected
  • Methodical “follow through” and evaluation

The goal of the special event approval process is to make sure that events are safe, and don’t negatively affect the community. We want you to have a fun, successful, memorable event.

The online application has been designed as your one stop shop to help you plan an event that follows local, provincial, and federal policies and regulations governing activities associated with the production of events.

Before you apply

Prior to completing your permit application, you are encouraged to review the planning resources available here. These resources have been designed to assist event organizers in developing their event plans and include important information regarding the Special Event permitting process and regulatory requirements.

When do I complete an application?

When you are hosting an event on City property that will be open to the public, you will need to complete a special event application. For example, community festivals and celebrations, parades, walks/runs, cultural performances or gatherings, sport tournaments and outdoor markets.

If you are having a private event (invited guests only), you will need a facility rental permit. Examples include birthday parties, family reunions, corporate events and meetings.

If you are unsure whether your event is required to complete a Special Event Application, email [email protected] or call 519-837-5678.

How to apply

You must complete both steps of the application to be approved.

Step 1

Reserves the space only. Complete Step one of the application. This reserves your date/time/location, and a rental agreement will be started. You will answer some questions to ensure your event will work for the location and date selected. Once these details are confirmed you will have 7 days to complete and submit Step 2.

Step 2

You will answer detailed questions about your event and the activities involved. Once submitted, your application gets reviewed by City departments – they may provide input, ask questions, and request changes before approving your application. You will receive a rental agreement and application fees will be due at this time.

You will be able to save your work along the way, return to complete it, and log back in to check the status of your application.

Submission of an application does not deem the application approved. Applicants must meet all requirements before the City of Guelph will move the overall status of your event to approved.


Applications outside of these timelines will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and will only be permitted if requested space is available and there is sufficient time to approve the activities identified on the application.

Indoor events

For indoor events, timelines are outlined in the facility booking package.

Outdoor events

  • For events between January to June, your completed application (Step 1 and Step 2) must be submitted by October 31.
  • For events between July to December, your completed application (Step 1 and Step 2) must be submitted by March 31.

Technical information

You may save an application in process and return to work on it over a period of days or weeks.

While all sections of the permit application need to be completed prior to submission, you may use the navigation on the left column to complete the different sections of the application in an order that works best for you.

Once you submit your application, you will be notified if additional information is needed prior to the initiation of the review process and when the review process begins.

Once you have completed an application, you may copy it to initiate subsequent permit applications.

Thank you

On behalf of the City of Guelph, thank you for contributing to spirit and vitality of our community through the presentation of your event.

Submit an application

Apply now



Bylaws and licensing

Greening your event


Site maps

For more information

If you have any questions or concerns we would be very pleased to address them.

Facility Booking and Special Events Coordinators
[email protected]