Event Permits Cleveland

Cleveland is host to many outdoor events on an annual basis. As you start the planning process, it is important to recognize that your event plays a unique part in the relationship with the community. A quality event can make a difference to the City of Cleveland. EventPermits works with the City of Cleveland and its partners, in planning safe and successful events that comply with city law.

Cleveland Event Locations:

  • University Circle
  • Cleveland Botanical Garden
  • Progressive Field
  • Wolstein Center
  • West Side Market
  • Public Square
  • Quicken Loans Arena
  • Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Five miles (8 km) east of downtown Cleveland is University Circle, a 550-acre (2.2 km2) concentration of cultural, educational, and medical institutions, including the Cleveland Botanical Garden, Case Western Reserve University, University Hospitals, Severance Hall, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, and the Western Reserve Historical Society. Cleveland is also home to the I. M. Pei-designed Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, located on the Lake Erie waterfront at North Coast Harbor downtown. Neighboring attractions include Cleveland Browns Stadium, the Great Lakes Science Center, the Steamship Mather Museum, and the USS Cod, a World War II submarine.

Cleveland is home to many festivals throughout the year. Cultural festivals such as the annual Feast of the Assumption in the Little Italy neighborhood, the Hellenic Heritage Festival at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in the Tremont neighborhood, and the Harvest Festival in the Slavic Village neighborhood are popular events. Vendors at the West Side Market in Ohio City offer many different ethnic foods for sale. Cleveland hosts an annual parade on Saint Patrick’s Day that brings hundreds of thousands to the streets of downtown.

Oldenburg and van Bruggen’s Free Stamp, located in Willard Park to the east of City

HallFashion Week Cleveland, the city’s annual fashion event, is one of the few internationally recognized fashion industry happenings in North America. The show is considered by many to be the best in the Midwest perhaps second only to New York for fashion weeks in the US.

In addition to the cultural festivals, Cleveland hosted the CMJ Rock Hall Music Fest, which featured national and local acts, including both established artists and up-and-coming acts, but the festival was discontinued in 2007 due to financial and manpower costs to the Rock Hall. The annual Ingenuity Festival and Notacon conference focus on the combination of art and technology. The Cleveland International Film Festival has been held annually since 1977, and its eleven-day run drew a record 52,753 people in 2007. Cleveland also hosts an annual holiday display lighting and celebration, dubbed Winterfest, which is held downtown at the city’s historic hub, Public Square.

Cleveland’s professional sports teams include the Cleveland Indians (Major League Baseball), Cleveland Browns (National Football League), Cleveland Cavaliers (National Basketball Association), Cleveland City Stars (United Soccer Leagues), Lake Erie Monsters (American Hockey League), and the Cleveland Gladiators (Arena Football League). Annual sporting events held in Cleveland include the Champ Car Grand Prix of Cleveland, the Cleveland Marathon, the Mid-American Conference college basketball tournament and the Ohio Classic college football game. The city hosted the Gravity Games, an extreme sports series, from 2002 to 2004, and the Dew Action Sports Tour Right Guard Open in 2007. Local sporting facilities include Progressive Field, Cleveland Browns Stadium, Quicken Loans Arena, and the Wolstein Center.

Downtown Cleveland is centered around Public Square and includes a wide range of diversified districts. Downtown Cleveland is home to the traditional Financial District and Civic Center, as well as the distinct Theatre District, which houses Playhouse Square Center, and mixed-use neighborhoods such as the Flats and the Warehouse District, which are occupied by industrial and office buildings and also by restaurants and bars. The number of downtown housing units in the form of condominiums, lofts, and apartments has increased over the past ten years. This trend looks to continue with the recent revival of the Flats, the Euclid Corridor Project, and the success of East 4th Street.

Cleveland residents often define themselves in terms of whether they live on the east side or the west side of the Cuyahoga River. The east side comprises the following neighborhoods: Buckeye-Shaker Square, Central, Collinwood, Corlett, Euclid-Green, Fairfax, Forest Hills, Glenville, Payne/Goodrich-Kirtland Park, Hough, Kinsman, Lee Harvard/Seville-Miles, Mount Pleasant, Nottingham, St. Clair-Superior, Union-Miles Park, University Circle, Little Italy, and Woodland Hills. The west side of the city includes the following neighborhoods: Brooklyn Centre, Clark-Fulton, Detroit-Shoreway, Cudell, Edgewater, Ohio City, Old Brooklyn, Stockyards, West Boulevard, and the four neighborhoods colloquially known as West Park: Kamm’s Corners, Jefferson, Puritas-Longmead, and Riverside. Three neighborhoods in the Cuyahoga Valley are sometimes referred to as the south side: Industrial Valley/Duck Island, Slavic Village (North and South Broadway), and Tremont.

Will I need a Permit?

If you are asking this question, the answer most likely is, yes!

If you are in doubt about whether or not your proposed activity is an Outdoor Special Event, and are unsure of what is required, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Even though my event is on private property, will some aspects of it spill onto the public space? (i.e. sidewalks, roads, city property or property owned by someone other than you)
  • Is there a remote chance that the safety of the participants and/or the residents of the City of Cleveland may be affected if certain aspects of your event are not properly constructed, installed, or handled (i.e. food, electrical wiring, tents, stages, generators)
  • Does your event require any City of Cleveland services? ( i.e. trash pick up, closing of streets, etc.)
  • Will I be erecting a stage, tent (10 x 10 or larger), bleachers, or booths?
  • Will I be vending? (food, beverages, merchandise)
  • Will I be selling/serving Alcohol? Will my event include advertising and/or product sampling?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, you will need an event permit in the City of Cleveland and EventPermits will facilitate all of your needs on your behalf.

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