A Special Occasion Permit (SOP), issued by the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO), is needed any time alcohol is offered for sale or served anywhere other than in a licensed establishment or a private place. When alcohol is part of an event, public or private, on municipal property, the Municipal Alcohol Policy (MAP), a proactive policy to promote a safe, responsible and enjoyable environment for all users, must be adhered to. 

Serving Alcohol at an Event

When applying to the Municipality the following steps should be followed:

  1. Fill out the Special Event Application-Check the box that pertains to Alcohol. Whoever will be applying for the SOP must sign the bottom portion of the Hold Harmless on the Application and provide a certificate of insurance. (Please refer to Insurance & Accident Prevention to see more on the certificate of insurance requirements).
  2. Obtain the Fire Services Special Event Checklist, complete and return it with the application package.
  3. Refer to the Municipal Alcohol Policy (MAP) for a complete listing of required Municipal controls and regulations
  4. You must complete & submit The Special Event Application Form to the Municipality before you apply for an SOP as the AGCO may require a letter from the Municipality indicating they have been advised of the event.
  5. Obtain an SOP (permitting both the sale and consumption of alcohol at your event) application from the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) website. The SOP can be applied online, the LBCO locations will no longer be accepting applications.
  6. Once the SOP has been obtained from the AGCO the document is to be submitted to the Municipality.
  7. Complete and submit Smart Server List Appendix C - MAP (page 12 of the MAP)
  8. All events that involve alcohol must include/supply food at the event. 

If you expect less than 5,000 attendees at your event, the Municipality requires your completed paperwork 8 - 10 weeks in advance of your event. You must apply for your SOP no less than 30 days prior to the event.

If you expect 5,000 attendees or more at your event, the Municipality requires your completed application 12 weeks in advance of your event. You must apply for your SOP no less than 60 days prior to the event.

According to provincial law, individuals cannot fundraise by selling liquor.

An SOP holder that is not a registered charity or non-profit organization or association may hold a public event if the event is an event of provincial, national or international significance, or an event of municipal significance and is designated by the municipal council as an event of municipal significance.

*Given sufficient notice, the Special Event Coordinator will assist you in working with our Municipal Governance.

Alcohol - Security Requirements

Chatham-Kent Police Services will work with event organizers to ensure appropriate police resources are dedicated to the event, ensuring the safety of all citizens attending events within the municipality. They may determine that Paid Duty Officers are required, if this is the case staff will contact the event organizers with further details and on how to proceed.