Rules and FAQs
Children’s play area: dawn to dusk
Conservation area (the south end of the park): dawn to dusk
Lit areas (most of the north side of the park): dawn to 11:30 p.m.
NO TRESPASSING AFTER HOURS
Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Absolutely no staking in Depot Park. The park is a brownfield site and the ground cannot be penetrated. In lieu of staking, sand bags, bricks, or water jugs are often used.
Alcohol, intoxicating substances, and smoking are prohibited.
Camping or open fires are not allowed at any time.
Personal grills are allowed at Depot Park. Grills are also provided at the pavilions and are available for use when the pavilions are not being rented.
Activities or events requiring open flames (such as candles - excluding birthday cake candles in a cake) are not permitted in Depot Park unless approved by the Depot Park Manager at least 72 hours in advance.
Amplified sound (DJ, bluetooth speakers, etc.) is not permitted in Depot Park unless approved by the Depot Park Manager at least 72 hours in advance.
Pets must be leashed.
Do not leave property unattended in the park.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: HOW MUCH IS THE ENTRANCE FEE?
A: There is no charge! Depot Park is a division of the City of Gainesville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department and therefore is a free city park. There are charges for renting spaces, and for some specialty classes that are offered from time to time in the park, such as yoga, or swing dancing lessons.
Q: WHAT ARE THE HOURS OF THE SPLASH PAD?
A: The Blue Grotto Splash Pad is located inside the Children's Play Area, which hours are dawn to dusk. The Splash Pad operates year round as long as the temperature outside is above 70 degrees and there isn't lighting within 10 miles of the park.
Q: CAN I BRING ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES TO DEPOT PARK?
A: Alcohol is not allowed in the park. However, you are allowed to purchase beer and wine in the Depot Building - from the Boxcar Beer & Wine Garden and Pop-a-Top General Store - and consume on their patio.
Q: HOW LONG ARE THE TRAILS?
A: The outer most trail is a picturesque 0.8-mile loop. Our trail connects to the Gainesville-Hawthorne Rail to Trail. The zero mile marker for the trail is at the intersection of paths near the Pop-a-Top General Store.
Q: DO I NEED TO RESERVE A PICNIC TABLE?
A: Individual picnic tables that are located throughout the park are available on a first come, first served basis to park users. There are currently 10, four-seater tables throughout the park.
Q: CAN I FISH AT DEPOT PARK?
A: Fishing is NOT allowed in Depot Park. The ponds are filled with runoff from Downtown Gainesville and are lined with a plastic liner which can easily be damaged by hooks.
Q: IS THERE Wi-Fi IN DEPOT PARK?
A: Not yet! It's on our wish list.
Q: ARE THERE ELECTRICAL OUTLETS AVAILABLE FOR USE?
A: Use of electricity in Depot Park has to be approved and coordinated with Depot Park Manager prior to using it.
Q: ARE THERE ANY GRILLS AVAILABLE AT THE PARK, OR CAN I BRING MY OWN?
A: There are two grills located both Pavilion A and B. Although, these are only available if the pavilions are not rented, click here to check pavilion availability. Personal grills are allowed to be carried into the park. Depot Park does not provide a place to dispose of your charcoal, so whatever you bring in, you must also take out.
Q: CAN I HIRE A DJ OR BRING SPEAKERS?
A: You are not able to have amplified sound without getting special permission from Depot Park Manager prior to your event.
Q: CAN I BRING A SHADE TENT OR SHADE UMBRELLA?
A: Yes. However, nothing can be staked into the ground because Depot Park is a brownfield site. Please plan to secure your items with weights, sand bags, water containers or bricks.
Q: CAN I DECORATE THE PAVILIONS FOR MY EVENT?
A: Decorate as much as you would like with festive garland and such, but only attach things by tape to avoid damaging the wood. Glitter and confetti are not permitted in Depot Park.
Q: CAN I RENT A BOUNCE HOUSE, OR INFLATABLE TO BE SET UP AT THE PARK?
A: No. Large inflatables, such as a bounce house, are not permitted in Depot Park.
Q: HOW DO I GO ABOUT HOLDING AN EVENT AT DEPOT PARK?
A: To rent a space in Depot Park, click here. To rent a space in the Historic Depot Building, click here. And to rent a space inside the Cade Museum, click here.
Q: CAN I GET MARRIED IN DEPOT PARK?
A: Yes! The West Overlook is an ideal location in the park to get married. The Pavilions or the Historic Depot Building Event Space are great locations for receptions. To rent the West Overlook, the Pavilions, or another space in the park, click here. For rental information on the Depot Building, contact the venue manager at email@example.com or visit their website.
Q: WHEN WOULD I NEED TO ACQUIRE A PERMIT?
A: You will need to apply for a permit if you are charging admission; selling goods or food; impacting traffic in any way; putting up a tent larger than 10'x10'; playing amplified music; or holding an event with over 50 people. For City permits, contact Krystal Martin, Gainesville Police Department.
Q: CAN I SELL FOOD OR OTHER PRODUCTS IN THE PARK
A: Selling food, drinks, merchandise or services in the park requires special permission and rental of the space. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: ARE PETS ALLOWED IN DEPOT PARK?
A: Pets are allowed only when leashed. There are no off-leash areas. No pets except service dogs are allowed in the Children’s Play Area.
Q: WHAT IS THE CANCELLATION POLICY FOR PAVILION RENTALS?
A: Cancellations must be submitted to the Depot Park Office 72-hours prior to the rental for a full refund of rental fees and deposits. Processing fees are not refundable. If a ‘Rain Out’ is declared by Depot Park Staff, and the rented pavilion was not used for at least 2 hours, a request to reschedule may be made at no charge. If the preference is not to reschedule, a refund may be requested for the full rental fee and deposit. Processing fees are not refundable.
Q: WHAT IS THE CANCELLATION POLICY FOR SPECIAL EVENTS?
A: All cancellations must be emailed to the Depot Park Office at DepotPark@CityOfGainesville.org and confirm receipt.
30 days or more prior notice of cancellation will receive a full refund of rental fees and full deposit
Between 15 and 29 days prior notice of cancellation will receive 50% refund of rental fees and full deposit
Less than 14 days’ prior notice of cancellation will receive NO refund of rental fees or deposit
ADDITIONAL REGULATIONS, LAWS AND ORDINANCES APPLY
CITY OF GAINESVILLE CODE OF ORDINANCES APPLY
CHAPTER 15-6 NOISE ORDINANCE
CHAPTER 18 at WWW.CITYOFGAINESVILLE.ORG
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us.