Park Use Rules, Regulations, and Code of Conduct
Conduct in all public parks is subject to all the Municipal Code of the City of Santa Barbara. Violations are civil infractions that can result in an immediate citation with fines and removal from the park. Failure to comply can result in criminal trespass charges.
With the exceptions of Skofield Park, Hilda McIntyre Ray Park, and Franceschi Park, all parks:
- Open at sunrise
- Close ½ hour after sunset
Skofield Park, Hilda McIntyre Ray Park, and Franceschi Park open at 8:00am.
Exceptions are made for permitted special events, recreational activities, and rentals. For instance, areas with lighted sports fields such as Cabrillo Ball Park, Dwight Murphy Field, the Municipal Tennis Center, and Pershing Park may be open after dark for approved activities.
Dogs are allowed on-leash in most parks. Dogs are not allowed in playgrounds. Dogs are also not allowed on the beach at East Beach, West Beach, and Leadbetter Beach.
Dogs are allowed off-leash in marked areas including: west of steps at Shoreline Park’s beach, beaches at Thousand Steps and Mesa Lane Steps, and the MacKenzie Park Off-Leash Dog Area.
Always clean-up after your dog! Mutt mitts are available in selected parks.
The benefits of Parks and Recreation programs are numerous. Recreation is essential to personal health. Participation in Parks and Recreation programs enhances the quality of life and can build strong families and healthy communities.
In order to ensure the quality and enjoyment of Parks and Recreation programs and to promote a safe and positive atmosphere for the programs, all participants, staff, parents, and persons involved with the programs (i.e. spectators, coaches, volunteers, etc.) shall abide by the following Code of Conduct, which shall apply to all participants in Parks and Recreation programs:
No activities that unreasonably interfere with other participants’ use of Parks and Recreation programs and facilities are allowed. These prohibited activities include, but are not limited to the following:
- Physical abuse or assault
- Verbal abuse
- Fighting or challenging to fight
- Making violent and threatening statements
- Engaging in or soliciting any sexual act
- Damaging or destroying Parks and Recreation property
Program rules and regulations shall be observed at all times.
- Engaging in any activity prohibited by law.
- The following are prohibited: weapons, alcoholic beverages, illegal substances, and exhibiting signs of being under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Smoking any substance (including the use of e-cigarettes or vape pens) inside Parks and Recreation facilities or anywhere on Parks and Recreation property.
- Leaving animals unattended anywhere on Parks and Recreation property. Animals must remain under the control of their owners, per Santa Barbara Municipal Code §6.08.020.
- Personal belongings may not be left unattended in any Parks and Recreation facility or park grounds after closing time. Unattended items will be removed and are subject to the City of Santa Barbara Policy on Lost and Unclaimed Personal Property, and Abandoned Property Found on City-Owned Property.
- Refusing to leave Parks and Recreation premises at closing time.
- Adults (18 and older) are only allowed in City of Santa Barbara playgrounds when they are accompanying a child age 12 or younger. Adults may accompany children with special needs ages 13 and over in playground areas.
- Entering Parks and Recreation programs and facilities with animals other than service animals authorized by the American with Disabilities Act.
- Indoor facility users are limited to one bag for recreation equipment, apparel, and toiletries.
- Bedding, sleeping bags, bed-rolls, and blankets (blankets for small children are acceptable) cannot be brought into Parks and Recreation facilities
- Wheelchairs and strollers are allowed for the actual transport of a person.
- At no time may persons deposit personal belongings in Parks and Recreation indoor facilities and leave the premises. Unattended items will be removed and are subject to the City of Santa Barbara Policy on Lost and Unclaimed Personal Property, and Abandoned Property Found on City-Owned Property.
- Disturbing anyone with loud and/or unreasonable noise, including but not limited to talking loudly on cell phones, and the use of electronic devices such as radios and music players.
- Emitting strong, pervasive odors, including odors caused by perfume or poor personal hygiene, so as to interfere with patrons’ ability to participate in programs or use of the facility.
Any City representative responsible for officiating, supervising, or otherwise operating a Parks and Recreation program shall have authority to enforce the terms of this Code, as authorized by the Director of Parks and Recreation, empowered by Municipal Code Section 15.16.220. Failure of any person to abide by this Code of Conduct will result in disciplinary action consistent with the Code of Conduct Enforcement Procedure. Minors under the age of 18 are required to have a parent or legal guardian sign the registration form required for participation in any program.
Permits are required for most events open to the public. Please review the Special Events page for information and rules specific to public events.
Our summer camp registration and refund policies have changed.
The new policies described below will allow Parks and Recreation staff to give you the best customer service possible. Changes to our policies also help ensure camp participant safety and allow the largest number of campers to make summer memories with SB Parks and Rec!
No Camp Waitlists (New Policy)
Our activity registration system, PerfectMind, will no longer maintain waitlists for summer camps. From now on, if you see a spot available on PerfectMind, it's available! Please check back regularly, as spots open up when a participant withdraws.
Medical Questionnaire Deadlines (New Policy)
May 15 is the deadline to complete the required medical questionnaire for your child. If your child's medical questionnaire has not been completed by May 15, the PerfectMind system will automatically withdraw them from all camps. If this happens, we will automatically provide you with a full refund.
Online Withdrawal (New Policy)
We've enabled online registration; you can withdraw your child online through your PerfectMind account. Refund fees may apply, depending on when you withdraw your camper(s) from their enrolled camp(s). Please see below for details on fees.
Refund Policy (Updated Policy)
A 100% refund will be given for activities cancelled by the Parks and Recreation Department. Refund fees are applied based on how soon a camp or activity starts after the withdrawal date. To minimize refund fees, please be aware of the timeframes listed below and the exception for medical reasons:
If you make your cancellation request (or online withdrawal through PerfectMind):
- 15 days or more before the start of the program: 90% refund
- 5 to 14 days before the start of the program: 50% refund
- Less than five days before the start of the program: We will not give refunds for withdrawals or cancellations made less than five days before the start of the enrolled camp.
- Transfers: We will no longer transfer a camper from one camp to another. Instead of transferring, we will process a refund, and you may then register your camper in another camp.
Medical reasons for cancellation
If your camper has a medical emergency or becomes ill, please let us know as soon as you can if this will affect participation in the registered camp or activity. A doctor’s note may be required to process your refund. If a participant cannot transfer to a later camp, a 90% camp refund will be applied.
Registration End Date (New Policy)
Registration for each camp will close at 11:30 p.m. the Wednesday before the camp session starts.
The City of Santa Barbara Parks and Recreation Department is committed to supporting individuals with disabilities in accordance with the ADA in order to provide reasonable services and opportunities to those who may have health or special needs. It is the goal of the inclusion services team to plan for reasonable and appropriate program accommodations for a positive recreational experience. To accomplish this we need and value your input. Therefore, please ensure your camper's Medical Conditions Questionnaire and required Supplemental Medical Inclusion Forms are completed at least three (3) weeks prior to the program start date. This provides sufficient time for us to plan the best ways to meet your child's needs and make necessary arrangements for any support. For questions, please call (805) 564-5421 or send an email to Inclusion@SantaBarbaraCA.gov.