Temporary Events

A temporary event is a temporary use of property for a limited duration.

Prohibited Temporary Events

Any temporary event for a use which is either not allowed in the underlying zone, or not allowed without a Temporary Event Permit, is prohibited. Examples of prohibited temporary events include:

  • The use of a residentially-zoned property as a commercial event venue of any kind, including for temporary weddings; and
  • Temporary retail sales (other than garage sales) which are not otherwise allowed with a Temporary Event Permit.

Temporary Events Allowed with a Temporary Event Permit

Animal ShowExhibition of domestic or large animals.
Arts and Crafts Shows,
Indoors and Outdoors
Display and sale of painting, sculpture, crafts and similar objects.
Christmas Tree SaleRetail sale of Christmas trees between Thanksgiving and December 26th. Also includes seasonal sales such as the sale of pumpkins at Halloween.
Circus and CarnivalProvision of games, eating and drinking facilities, live entertainment, animal exhibitions, or similar activities on a site, or in a tent or other temporary structure. This classification excludes an event in a permanent entertainment facility.
Commercial FilmingCommercial motion picture or video photography at the same location for a single or limited production.
Philanthropic EventSale of tickets, fundraising and use of public or private facilities for nonprofit organization or to benefit charitable cause, including use of residential, commercial or office space.
Religious AssemblyReligious services conducted on a site that is not permanently occupied by a religious assembly use.
Retail Sale, OutdoorRetail sale of new merchandise on the site of a legally established retail business.
Rummage SaleThe sale of secondhand property including reclaimed or salvaged goods by a charitable, religious or nonprofit organization.
Storage, OutdoorStorage or replacement of equipment, merchandise or products not otherwise permitted outside of a building. Not related to construction activity for which a land use permit is required.
Street FairProvision of games, eating and drinking facilities, live entertainment, or similar activities not requiring use of roofed structures
Trade FairDisplay and sale of goods or equipment related to a specific trade or industry.

Temporary Event Permit Process

  1. Submit a completed Temporary Event Permit Application and applicable fees.
  2. The Zoning Administrator shall review your application for completeness within 30 days of submittal. The Zoning Administrator shall consult with the Parks and Recreation Department, the Public Works Department, the Police Department, the Moraga-Orinda Fire Protection District and the City Manager concerning the proposed temporary event.
  3. Once the application has been deemed complete, the Zoning Administrator shall mail written notice of the proposed temporary use to each property owner within 300-feet of the subject property. The written notice will also be posted on the subject property. The notice allows any member of the public to provide written comments or request a public hearing during a 10-day public notice period.
  4. If a request for a public hearing is not requested, following the 10-day public notice period, the Zoning Administrator will approve, deny or conditionally approve the temporary event permit based on the standards found in 17.37.4 - Standards

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • How early in advance should I apply for a temporary event permit? A temporary event permit application should be submitted at least 2 months in advance of the proposed event. This allows staff to process, review, and notice the proposed event. 
  • Do I need a temporary event permit for a noncommercial wedding or large party on my residential property? If noncommercial, weddings and other large gatherings in residential zoning districts are allowed without a permit. Other requirements, such as maximum noise levels, would still apply to such noncommercial events. 
  • Am I allowed to rent my home for weddings or other events, or charge admission for parties at my property? No. This type of commercial activity is not allowed in residential zoning districts in Orinda.