Expansion of Alcohol Beverage License & Street Privilege Permit - Special Event (Public Property)

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Effective January 1, 2020, a Special Event Permit is required for events meeting the definition of a special event. See New Special Event Procedures pursuant to Ordinance 5113 adopted October 10, 2019.

A license to expand alcohol beverage applies to consumption or possession of intoxicants on public property. An establishment licensed for alcohol may expand the licensed premise for a special event onto adjacent public property.

License Fee

$250.00 is due at the time of filing application (cash, check payable to City Treasurer or credit with convenience fee).

How to Apply

Licensee must notify the City Clerk's in advance of the event and provide the address of the licensed establishment where expansion is to occur in order to obtain a list of abutting and adjacent property owners. Licensee must obtain written approval from at least 2/3rds of abutting and adjacent property owners prior to filing an application.

Applications shall be made in writing on the form prescribed by law and filed with the City Clerk's Office and in conjunction with the relevant special event application. Applications shall be filed with the City Clerk not less than sixty (60) days prior to the event and no more than one (1) year in advance.

Applications for Expansion of Alcohol Beverage License will be considered by the Judiciary & Administration Committee and is subject to review by the Traffic Engineer, Police Department, Fire Department and La Crosse County Health Department.

All permittees shall provide evidence of comprehensive general liability insurance, blanket contractual liability insurance and insurance covering liability for acts or omissions arising out of the organization’s sale or dispensing of alcoholic beverages in the amount of $1,000,000.00 per occurrence including an endorsement naming the City of La Crosse as an additional insured and shall, by the acceptance of the permit, be deemed to agree to indemnify, defend and hold the City of La Crosse harmless for all damages of any variety and shall provide to the City Clerk a certificate of insurance establishing the above coverages before any such permit shall be issued.

Conditions & Additional Information

  • Only one permit shall be allowed on any one day and may only be granted during the period of Memorial Day through Labor Day.

  • Each tavern/restaurant shall have its area specifically delineated by a fence for the selling, serving and consumption of alcoholic beverages, soft drinks or food items. The fence shall completely enclose the area but for spaces for entry and exits, which shall not exceed twelve (12) feet in width, and at each of which there shall be a licensed beverage operator or security guard. If the entry or exit space exceeds eight (8) feet in width, two (2) such people shall be provided.

  • The enclosing fence shall be either one six (6) foot high minimum fence or two four (4) foot high fences placed at least twenty-four (24) inches apart. The fence provided shall be of non-penetrable material. For security guards, there shall be at least one (1); the guards shall be on duty at all times during the operation of the area and shall prevent entry of minors, unless accompanied by his or her parent, legal guardian or spouse who has attained the legal drinking age, or intoxicated people into the area and shall prevent alcoholic beverages from being carried or passed out of the area; the Police Department is authorized to require additional guards if they feel it is necessary.

  • The tavern/restaurant shall encourage patrons to not obstruct sidewalks and roadways adjacent to its areas. Litter Control: Each tavern/restaurant shall provide waste receptacles based on the reasonably expected number of patrons and shall gather all litter and any other matter from that event from the enclosed areas and from the immediate vicinity. All tavern/restaurants shall provide for same day disposal of gathered litter. No glass containers are allowed outside.

  • Temporary, approved sanitary facilities shall be provided in quantities required by the building code for the expanded area of the licensed premises. Temporary, approved sanitary facilities shall be removed in their entirety from the site of or area adjacent to the licensed premises and expanded licensed premises no later than midnight each night. In the case of an approval of licensed premises being expanded for multiple or consecutive days, the temporary, approved portable sanitary facilities shall be completely emptied, cleaned and readied for service by a licensed waste hauler before such temporary, approved sanitary facilities are returned to the site of the expanded licensed premises.

  • Each tavern/restaurant shall provide a reasonable number of signs indicating that drinking of alcoholic beverages is prohibited on City streets and public ways except as permitted by this ordinance and that City ordinances prohibit the carrying out of open containers containing alcohol from designated areas.

  • All permits and outdoor sales of alcoholic beverages shall expire or end no later than 10:00 p.m.

  • At least one licensed beverage operator shall be present and able to see at all times the activities of those persons serving and selling alcoholic beverages.

  • Violations of any of the above conditions shall be grounds for cancellation of a permit for subsequent events or for action for suspension or revocation of license by Common Council or for prosecution of any ordinance violation or combination of above.

  • All application for a Street Privilege Permit shall be dealt with on a case-by-case basis.

  • The following activities, but not limited to, shall not be conducted in connection with any special Street Privilege Permit and shall be dealt with on a case-by-case basis. These activities include such activities as mud wrestling, jello wrestling, wet t-shirt contests, all-you-can-drink specials, 2-for-1 specials, happy hours, women’s nights, progressive pitchers, free beer, drinking contests (e.g., Jose Cuervo vs. Captain Morgan, etc.)


For more information, contact the City Clerk's Office at (608) 789-7510.

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