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Outdoor Events FAQs

​​ Why do I need a Special Use Permit for an outdoor event?

Where can I have an outdoor event in the Presidio?

Can I have a wedding in the Presidio?

Are indoor facilities also available for events?

What if I want to host an event with indoor and outdoor activities?

When do you need a Special Use Permit?

How do I request a Special Use Permit?

How do I reserve picnic areas in the Presidio?

Can I have a caterer at my event?

Can I have a food truck/cart at my event?

Is alcohol allowed at my event?

Do I need insurance for my event?

What are your decorating restrictions?

Where can I get information about planning an event on Crissy Field?

Other Important Info


Thank you for considering the Presidio for your outdoor event. Your permit fees support maintaining the park! More information about planning a visit to the Presidio is on our website.

Why do I need a Special Use Permit for an outdoor event?

Special Use Permits help ensure public safety, prevent accidental impacts to the park’s natural, historic, and cultural resources, and minimize conflicts with other visitors and activities.

Where can I have an outdoor event in the Presidio?

There are a variety of locations available for outdoor events. These include the large lawn areas on the Main Post, playing fields, other areas in the Presidio. New facilities will also be coming online with the opening of the Presidio Tunnel Tops in 2022 – please check back! For details on available sites, including size, location, and capacity, please see Lawn Rentals. If you would like to hold an outdoor event in an area not listed, please let us know and we can determine if it is feasible.

Can I have a wedding in the Presidio?

Yes, you can have a wedding at any of the lawns we permit for special events or one of our historic venues. All outdoor weddings require a Special Use Permit.

Are indoor facilities also available for events?

The Presidio offers a variety of historic venues for special events. Please visit our website to learn more.

What if I want to host an event with indoor and outdoor activities?

No problem! Many of the indoor venues include nearby outdoor areas. For larger events that want to take advantage of the iconic lawns on the Main Post, we will be happy to work with you to provide a coordinated experience.

When do you need a Special Use Permit?

Special Use Permits are generally required for organized events or activities, as well as commercial enterprises that meet any of the following criteria:

  • Events that require partial or exclusive use of an area of the park
  • Any commercial activity where a product would be sold or served
  • Private and Public Events that are advertised
  • Events with a participation fee
  • Training runs or walks of 30 or more people
  • Gatherings with over 50 attendees
  • Events with catering and/or food trucks/carts and/or alcohol sales/beverage service
  • Events with tenting, staging, generators, live music, or amplified music
  • Events with any rental equipment or furniture
  • Events with reserved parking, valet service, or shuttle service
  • On-going or recurring commercial classes or programs
  • Events that go beyond the scope of “normal” park use

If you are unsure if your event requires a Special Use Permit, please contact the Outdoor Events permit office at outdoorevents@presidiotrust.gov or (415) 561-4200. We will respond to your inquiry within three business days.

How do I request a Special Use Permit?

  • To request a Special Use Permit, fill out a Special Use Permit Application and email it to outdoorevents@presidiotrust.gov.
  • To request reasonable accommodations for any portion of the Special Use Permit application process, please contact us at outdoorevents@presidiotrust.gov or (415) 561-4200.
  • We accept applications up to one-year in advance. Submission of an application does not guarantee Special Use Permit approval.
  • Additional documents, review, and approval may be required.
  • Applications received less than 10 days prior to your requested event may be subject to additional fees.
  • For information about reserving Fort Scott Field, please visit the Playing Fields webpage.
  • Rob Hill Campground reservations are managed through a different process. For more information about Rob Hill reservations please visit the Rob Hill Campground webpage.

How do I reserve picnic areas in the Presidio?

Most picnic areas are on a first-come, first-served basis. Picnics with fewer than 50 people may not require a permit (see “When Do You Need a Special Use Permit” above). Any picnic with catering, rental equipment, or furniture will require a permit regardless of size. Reservable picnic and BBQ areas will be available at the Tunnel Tops when it opens in spring of 2022.

Can I have a caterer at my event?

Catering is allowed in conjunction with a Special Use Permit; additional fees apply. Proof of insurance is required, and additional documentation may be required. A list of pre-approved caterers can be provided upon request.

Can I have a food truck/cart at my event?

Yes, food trucks and/or carts are allowed with a Special Use Permit; additional fees apply. Proof of insurance is required, and additional documentation may be required. Food trucks and carts are allowed to serve food to your permitted group only.

Is alcohol allowed at my event?

Yes, alcohol is allowed at your event for those who are 21 and over.

Do I need insurance for my event?

Commercial general liability insurance is required. Tenant User Liability Insurance (TULIP) must be purchased from the Presidio Trust’s approved vendor. Corporate clients may supply their own insurance; however, the inability to provide necessary coverage requires TULIP. Insurance rates vary. Some activities may not be insurable.

What are your decorating restrictions?

Please help keep the Presidio green!

  • Balloons are not allowed at outdoor events
  • Confetti, glitter, fire sparklers, hay, rice, etc. is not allowed (glow sticks and ribbon wands are good alternatives)
  • Staking into grass is not permitted to protect underground resources
  • Other restrictions may apply

Where can I get information about planning an event on Crissy Field?

The Golden Gate National Recreation Area Office of Special Park Uses manages the permitting process for outdoor events at Crissy Field, Baker Beach, East Beach, and West Bluff. For more information visit the National Park Service website or contact them at (415) 561-4300 or goga_permits@nps.gov.

OTHER IMPORTANT INFO

EVENT HOURS: Hours are based on the location, size, and scope of your event. Quiet hours are generally 10 pm-8 am Monday-Friday and 10 pm – 9am Saturday and Sunday. All events must conclude by midnight (inclusive of breakdown).

INFLATABLES: Jumpy jumps, bounce houses, or inflatables are not allowed anywhere in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, including the Presidio. Other types of interactive play equipment may be allowed with a Special Use Permit; additional fees may apply.

MUSIC: Music and amplified sound are allowed in certain locations with a Special Use Permit. Amplified sound, live or recorded, must be maintained at levels that do not disturb other people or wildlife. Additional restrictions may apply.

RESTROOMS: Some events will require the permittee to provide additional restrooms for guests. This will be determined based on event size and location.

SIGNAGE: Signage is allowed with your Special Use Permit and must be approved in advance.

The Presidio Trust is a nonprofit independent federal agency. Your funds stay in the park to help support our public programs, rehabilitate and maintain our historic buildings, trail systems, native habitats, and open spaces for public use now and for generations to come.

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