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Special Events Program


The Office of the Special Events Program is responsible for issuing permits, conducting inspections, investigating citizen complaints, investigating food-borne illnesses, providing consultation and customer service for all operations at an Event.

Permit types:

Temporary Food Establishment means a food establishment that operates in conjunction with a fair, rodeo, exhibition, or similar public event that operates for not more than fourteen (14) consecutive days within any permit year, provided it is the same permittee, at the same location, and the same event. At the termination of the event, the temporary food establishment shall be removed from the premises.

Special Event Food Establishment means a food establishment that operates in conjunction with one event that operates for not more than 14 consecutive days. At the termination of the event, the special event food establishment shall be removed from the premises. The permit is valid for 1 year and may only operate at designated events the department approves.

Seasonal Food Establishment means a fixed or Mobile Food Establishment that operates in conjunction with one public celebration or similar seasonal event for fifteen (15) to one hundred twenty (120) days within any permit year. At the termination of the event, the Seasonal Food Establishment shall be removed from the premises or shall cease operation as determined by the Department.

Event means a public celebration such as but not limited to a fair, festival, circus, exhibition, carnival, food and/or drink tasting. A Temporary, Seasonal, or Special Event Food establishment may only operate at an event that has been approved by this Department. The coordinator for an event must submit the Coordinator Application to the Department.

General Information

The information in this Website contains the complete application package and guidelines for permitting and operating an Event in Maricopa County.

You will find extensive information here and all of it is needed to review your application in a timely manner. Remember, the more thorough your package, the faster the approval.

We are asking your assistance in making sure your plan and application are approved as quickly as possible. In order for us to process applications quickly, please ensure that the application is filled out completely and accurately and that all pertinent information outlined in the mobile food guidelines is included in the plan submission.

We hope the information on this Website will assist you in the process. If, after reading the information, you have any further questions, please call our office at (602) 506-6978.

Plan Review Requirements

Plan submittal is required for the Special Event Food Establishments. Before designing your facility/unit and submitting your Plan Review Application, you should read the Maricopa County Health Code. Questions concerning plans and construction requirements can be directed to (602) 506-6978. *(Potentially Hazardous Foods)

Event Requirements

In order to sell or give away any food or beverage product at an event, you are required to hold the proper permit. Please refer to the guidelines for event requirements. A completed application and fee must be submitted (7) seven days prior to the event. Any application not received at least (7) seven days before an event will be charged a late fee. Permits must be obtained prior to the start of an event. Inspectors cannot issue permits or collect permit fees onsite. There are no exceptions.

Commissary Requirement

All vendors that are conducting any food storage or food preparation prior to the event must do so at a Food Establishment that holds a current Maricopa County Permit. A commissary log will be required to be maintained onsite at the event.

Permit Exemptions

Vendors who are selling less than 10 linear feet of commercially packaged, non-potentially hazardous (TCS) food product are exempt from obtaining a Maricopa County Permit. Vendors who hold a current registration with the State of Arizona for Cottage Food are also exempt, provided they are operating within the Cottage Food regulations.

Non-Profit

As stated in the Maricopa County Environmental Health Code, “No permit shall be issued, and no permit is valid, until the permit fee is received by the Department, except that the operator of a charitable nonprofit establishment (which operates to provide relief solely to the poor, distressed, or underprivileged) may apply to the Board of Health for a waiver of the permit fee. A waiver of the fee may be granted only to the operator of an establishment, which maintains a current 501 (c)(3) tax exempt designation from the Department of Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, who demonstrates to the Board of Health that said fee will cause financial hardship. Board of Health granted fee waivers expire pursuant to the required permit listing in section c of this regulation. Application for a permit fee waiver shall be made using forms provided by the Department.

Fee waiver applications are presented to the Board of Health by the Maricopa County Environmental Services Department for processing. Expired permits are not eligible for fee waiver consideration, e.g. fee waiver applications submitted for Temporary Food Service Establishments after the event date. Send the completed application and supporting documentation to the Maricopa County Environmental Services Department, 1001 N. Central Avenue, Suite 695, Phoenix, AZ 85004.

Office Inspection Hours

The office is open for business Monday through Friday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM. Please note that Special Event Establishment inspections are only conducted by appointment. The office will be closed on holidays.

Location

Maricopa County Environmental Services Department
Special Events Program
1001 N. Central Ave Suite 300
Phoenix, AZ 85004

Directions

We are located at NORTHEAST corner of Central and Roosevelt t in Phoenix, Arizona. You may park in the visitor parking located in the garage on 1st Street and Roosevelt.
Office: (602) 506-6978
Fax: (602) 506-6862
Complaint Hotline: (602) 506-6616

Thank you for helping us to serve you better!