If you want to have an activity in Mill River Park with more than 20 people, or you would like to reserve a specific area within the Park, you need to apply for a special event permit. Small-scale events in Mill River Park include picnics, BBQs, family reunions, field days, or events of a similar nature. Applications to conduct regulated activities or uses must be submitted at least twenty-one (21) days in advance of the planned event, activity or use. Applications for film/photography permits must be submitted at least 48 hours in advance. All applicants will be charged a $25 non-refundable application fee.

Submitting an application does not guarantee you will be granted a permit. Permit fees will be assessed based on the nature of the event. Permit fees are applied directly to the park’s maintenance costs and horticultural upkeep.

Permits are required for:

  • Wedding ceremonies
  • A special event - this includes a performance, meeting, assembly, contest, exhibit, ceremony, parade, reading, or picnic involving more than 20 people
  • A group activity involving less than 20 people for which specific space within the Park is requested to be reserved or set up is required
  • Professional/Commercial photography or film

Please note:

  • Permits will not be granted on holidays or holiday weekends
  • Permits are not available for the Grand Steps
  • Permits are not available for outside fundraising purposes
  • School field days must be limited to 200 children and must be accompanied by 1 adult for every 10 children


Please fill out an application online and pay a non-refundable $25 application fee with a credit or debit card. We require at least 21 days to process an application for small-scale events (events that do not require a proposal). Depending on the specific details of your event, you may need to submit a security bond. The bond is refundable if participants/organizers comply with the rules and regulations of the Park in full. Additional requirements and restrictions

  • We do not allow tents or canopies, balloons, amplified sound, generators, inflatable structures for small-scale events.

  • We do not issue permits for events on major holiday weekends.

Large-Scale Events

In general, any event with more than 250 participants, as well as concerts, musical or theatrical performances, fairs, fund-raising events, or events of similar nature require a proposal. Click here to see our large event proposal guidelines. A detailed proposal should be submitted at least 90 days in advance of your event. After your proposal is submitted, it will be reviewed and you will be contacted.

Our standard requirements, where applicable, include but are not limited to, a refundable bond fee, certificate of insurance together with the Broker certification form, approvals from city agencies such as the health department, fire department and others where appropriate.

Wedding Permits

  • Permits will not be issued on holidays or holiday weekends.
  • Wedding ceremonies can be held on the Karp Family Great Lawn or Phillips Knoll.
  • Fees: there is a $500 non-refundable site fee for wedding ceremonies of up to 100 people and $1000 non-refundable site fee for wedding ceremonies of 101-150 people, in addition to the $25 non-refundable application fee.
  • 2 wedding permits can be issued per location per day: one between 8am and 2pm, another between 2pm and 8pm.
  • No equipment can be used for weddings at Mill River Park (i.e. staging, decorations, microphones, tables, podiums, tents). Small, portable chupahs are allowed. Low-volume music is acceptable.
  • A maximum of 10 folding chairs can be brought for elderly or infirmed guests.  Additional fees will apply if your event requires additional chairs.
  • Wedding ceremonies cannot exceed 1.5 hours.
  • Cancellations: After a permit has been submitted, there will be no refunds on site fees or permit fees. However, we will reschedule your ceremony within the calendar year, pending site availability.
  • We do not require permits for wedding photos unless your group is larger than 20 or you plan to use more than handheld photography equipment.
  • We do not allow wedding receptions in the park.

Film/Photography Permits
Permits will not be issued on holidays or holiday weekends. Film/Photography permits must be submitted 48 hours prior to your event.

Please note that additional fees apply, and will be assessed once your permit application is received.

  • Fee Schedule
  • Permit Application Fee: $25.00

Wedding Permits:

  • Up to 100 people: $500
  • 101-150 people: $1000

Film/Photography Permits:

  • $500/day if no closure of Park sections is required
  • $2,500/day if closure of Park sections is required or if equipment is brought in.

Special Event Permits:

  • Up to 250 people: $500/day if no closure of Park sections is required
  • $2,500/day if closure of Park sections is required or if equipment is brought in
  • Over 250 people: rate based on days needs, number of people anticipated and type of activity

A minimum $750 cleaning bond may be required for special events. The bond may be higher depending on the size of the event and type of activity held. If park staff have to clean up after an event it is a minimum of $250/person/day. An event insurance policy or certificate of additional insured is required for all events naming Mill River Park Collaborative and the City of Stamford as insured.