Park Facility Reservation Policies


Bellingham Parks and Recreation Mission is to support a healthy community by providing high quality services. Our facilities are intended for recreational activities for the enjoyment of the public. Facilities are available to the public for rent for commercial and non-commercial activities. 


The following information applies to Bellingham Parks and Recreation facility rentals including picnic shelters, buildings, park event open space and trails. In General: 

  • Must be 18 years or older, responsible for all payment of fees and return facility to it’s original condition
  • Pay in full at the time of reservation
  • Reservations may be made up to one year in advance.
  • Reservations must be made no less than 5 days in advance of the requested date.
  • Renters must abide by Parks Facilities Use Regulations, City policies, ordinances and codes.
  • Three (3) hour minimum rental.
  • City activities receive first priority for facility use. The City may cancel reserved facilities for City program needs with reasonable notice or emergency conditions.

Renters are required to conduct their activities in accordance with City and Park policies, ordinances and codes. Subsequent use of facilities to renters violating regulations or misusing facilities will be denied.  The cost of damages to facilities or required extra cleaning will be charged to the renter.

Renters are responsible for security. The City of Bellingham does not assume responsibility for providing security for any persons or items, personal or otherwise, brought to the facility by the renter or persons or businesses affiliated with the rental.

Alcoholic beverages may be allowed at the Fairhaven Park Pavilion, Bloedel Park Pavilion and Multipurpose Room with approved Special Request Application and insurance. The Parks and Recreation Director may approve Alcoholic beverages at other locations for Special Events with approved Special Request Form, Facility Use Agreement and insurance.  


Smoking or electronic smoking devices (vaping) is prohibited in all Park and Recreation managed properties (both indoor and outdoor). BMC 8.16.020

Motor vehicles may only be operated and parked in designated paved or graveled roadways and parking areas unless prior authorization is given. BMC 8.04.050

Overnight use of park facilities is prohibited. BMC 8.04.040

Cancellations & Refunds

Facility Rentals:

  • To be eligible for a refund, the renter must notify the Parks & Recreation Department no less than 30 days prior to the event date with a $20 cancellation fee. 
  • Fees are non-refundable if cancellation is less than 30 days prior to the event. 
  • Reservations may be transferred to another day 1 time for a $20 administrative fee with at least 5 days’ notice prior to the reservation.  
  • Facility rental permit holders that notify us at least 24 hours before the event that they are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms can reschedule their event 1 time for another available time or receive a refund (minus $20 administrative fee).

Commercial Use

“Commercial” refers to all individuals, groups or businesses, who charge a monetary admission, class fees, sell tickets, food or other items, solicit funds or donations, offer other for-profit activities or promote a commercial business. 

Examples: Bazaar or craft sales, kids camps, children’s programming (daycares/preschools), fundraisers, concerts, performances, and/or fitness events where admission is charged for entry or any event that includes food or merchandise vendors are considered commercial use.

The renter is responsible for obtaining any additional applicable and/or required permits for a commercial event including, but not limited to, City of Bellingham business license, Special Event Permit, food worker-card and right of way permit.

Special Request Form

Applicants/renters must submit a Special Request application for any of the following:

  • Events open to the public
  • Park event space and /or trail use without a facility rental
  • Events with expected attendance above the facility’s maximum capacity.
  • Requests for beer gardens or alcohol (may require additional Facility Use Agreement and Liquor Control Board permit or license)
  • Commercial Events
  • All tournaments or requests to regularly occupy an athletic court or field
  • At the request of the department

Special Requests Forms not received by the Parks & Recreation Administration Office at least 30 working days in advance of the event date will not be considered.