A Special Occasion Permit (SOP) is required any time alcohol is served anywhere other than in a licensed establishment or a private place, or when public consumption of a patron’s own alcohol is permitted at a tailgate event. A private place is an indoor area not usually open to the public and not open to the public during the event (for example, a boardroom, private office or a residence).

SOPs are for occasional, special events only, and not for personal profit or running an ongoing business. A permit may be revoked if the Registrar established under the Alcohol, Cannabis and Gaming Regulation and Public Protection Act (ACGRPPA) has reason to believe the event is being used for personal gain.

The following is an overview of the types of SOPs available, depending on the kind of event you are holding. For detailed information, see “Detailed Information on Event Types”, below.

Types of Special Occasion Permits: Overview

Four Special Occasion Permits may be issued for the following types of events:

  • Private Events are limited to invited guests only and may not be publicly advertised. The public cannot be admitted and there can be no intent to gain or profit from the sale of alcohol at the event.
  • Public Events are open to the public. These events can be advertised and fundraising and/or profit from the sale of alcohol at the event is permitted.
  • Tailgate Events are Public Events that are held in connection with, and in proximity to, a live sporting event and where attendees may bring their own liquor (BYOB) for consumption at the event.
  • Industry Promotional Events may be held to promote a manufacturer’s product(s) through sampling. There can be no intent to gain or profit from the sale of alcohol at the event.

The following sections provide an overview of Private Events, Public Events (except Tailgate Events) and Industry Promotional Events.

For more information on tailgate (public) events, please refer to the AGCO’s Tailgate Event Permit Guide.

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