Block Party & Special Event Permits

Planning to host a block party, church festival, carnival, or any other large event? In the City of West Allis, you'll need a special event permit to host any large event on public property. 

Related information:

What type of event requires a special event permit?

Anyone who organizes a gathering of at least 21 people that impedes the normal use of public property will need a special event permit. Examples of a special event include but are not limited to a block party*, church festival, concert, parade, carnival, or other large gathering on public property (right-of-way or land owned or controlled by a federal, state, or local government).

Class 1 Event

A special event that includes at least one of the following features: alcohol is available for consumption, electronically amplified outdoor sound is utilized, or more than 400 square feet of ground is covered by a tent or other temporary structure that provides shelter from the elements.

Class 2 Event

An organized gathering on public property that does not meet the definition of a Class 1 Event.

A special events permit is not required if/when:

  • The event is organized by an entity that has taxing authority (Federal, state or local governments, school district, etc.)
  • The event is a funeral or funeral procession
  • The premises has an extension of an existing Class “B” license under Wis. Stat. § 125.26(1);*
  • The event coordinator who has been issued a park use permit under West Allis Policy and Procedure #2107 Park Regulations and Permits for the event
  • The special event is authorized by the West Allis Police Department Crime Prevention Bureau.

what fees apply to a special events permit?

  • If the application is filed 45 days before the event, a non-refundable $50 special application fee is due at the time of application.
  • If the application is filed within 45 days of the event, a $200 expedited application processing fee is due at the time of application. 
  • 7 days before the event - Estimated Charges Fee: The estimated charges fee must be received at least 7 days before the event. Estimated charges are calculated based on projected direct costs for providing the staffing and equipment for the special event as requested by the sponsor and/or deemed necessary by the department to protect the public health, safety, and welfare. The departments shall consider the following when estimating the costs: the anticipated peak attendance, if alcohol is available for consumption, if there is outdoor amplified sound; layout, sightlines, nearby population density, parking availability, and other relevant factors.
  • Within 30 days after the event - Service Charge Settlement: Within 30 days after the event, each department that incurred staffing and equipment costs for the special event may file with the city clerk an invoice showing the actual direct costs for staffing and equipment provided on premises during the special event. The organizer shall pay or be refunded the difference from the estimated charges fee. Failure to timely pay will result in 1% interest per month added to the balance and may result in denials of future special event applications.

*The fee for the block parties is $50, except during National Night Out Celebrations organized by West Allis Police Department, which are free.