Special Events

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With its natural beauty, reputation for world-class sporting and cultural experiences, and access to discerning and varied clientele, Monterey County is the perfect place to host your special event, large or small.  As a special event host, there are a number of important aspects to consider and plan for to ensure that everything goes smoothly, and most importantly, safely. 

This page is designed to give you an overview of permitting process from all angles and agencies involved, from land use and construction permits, to waste management, traffic and fire safety, food, and alcohol.  Fortunately, Monterey County has a Permit Coordinator whose role is to help you navigate the many twists and turns of the permitting process and to be your advocate while you work your way through the various public agencies involved, each of which ensure that Monterey County remains the naturally beautiful and safe venue that people the world over have come to know for premier gatherings of all sizes. 

How do I get started?
Your first step in planning your event in Monterey County should begin with Monterey County’s Permit Coordinator.  This person serves as part of the Resource Management Agency, the County’s centralized agency for public and private land use and development, including zoning permits, construction permits and traffic permits.  The Resource Management Agency has several regulatory roles related to special events designed to uphold the Building Code and Monterey County ordinances related to land use and encroachment into the public right of way.  The Permit Coordinator serves as a central point of contact to help you understand which permits you need and which agencies you need to contact.

What will the Permit Coordinator do for me?
The Permit Coordinator will assess the scope of your event to determine which permits are required.  The Permit Coordinator will meet with you, in person or over the phone, to collect a number of pieces of important information which will clarify the need for Resource Management Agency (RMA) and partner agency permits. 

How much time do I need to budget?
For events taking place on private property, where a zoning permit may be required, the Permit Coordinator recommends budgeting at least six months.  Construction permit applications must be submitted at least 60 days prior to the event to avoid additional fees.  Late construction permit applications may result in construction delays or event occupancy restrictions.  Processing times for traffic encroachment, waste management, food and alcohol permits fall within a 45 day range. 

Please Contact the Permit Coordinator, Freda Escobar, by phone at (831) 784-5689

or by email Escobar@co.monterey.ca.us


See below for Special Event Resources:

Download construction permit, planning permit and encroachment permit applications on our Forms page.