American Trust River's Edge Plaza

American Trust River's Edge Plaza Pavilion is located on the shores of the Mississippi River and is on the south end of the Mississippi Riverwalk. The Plaza also serves as a docking site for large excursion vessels, canoers and kayakers from spring through fall.

The American Trust River's Edge Plaza is available for reservations for public and private events.  The Plaza is particularly popular for wedding celebrations.

Port of Dubuque map.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS


You may download a PDF of these FAQ's by clicking here.

How do I reserve and pay for the River’s Edge Plaza?
Can I reserve the River’s Edge Plaza or does it need to be reserved by a wedding planner or caterer?
What hours can the reservation take place?
What events require a City of Dubuque Special Event Permit?
How do I apply for a Special Event Permit?
Is alcohol allowed during a rental?
Can I barricade my event?
Can tents be put up near the River’s Edge Plaza?
Is electricity available?
Who is responsible for trash removal and cleanup?
Are rest rooms available?
Can I rent the River’s Edge Plaza to sell “goods”?
Can my rental fee be refunded if an event is canceled in advance?
Can I close off the River’s Edge Plaza area to pedestrians using the Riverwalk or boats docking at the plaza area?
What is the docking schedule for large excursion boats?
Can I drive a vehicle or have a delivery vehicle up to River’s Edge Plaza?
Can I prepare food at River’s Edge Plaza?
Are pets allowed?
Can I decorate the River’s Edge Plaza or bring in chairs or other rental items?
Can I spread flower petals; throw rice, bird seed or similar item; blow bubbles?
What is the size / capacity of the River’s Edge Plaza?
Are fish flies ever a problem for an event?
Is flooding of the Mississippi River ever a problem for the Plaza?

1. How do I reserve and pay for the River’s Edge Plaza?


The River’s Edge Plaza may be reserved by calling the City of Dubuque Leisure Services Department at (563) 589-4263. The rental fee is $75 for a four-hour period, payable at time of reservation. Reservations may be made 23 months in advance of the event date. One reservation is allowed per day.

2. Can I reserve the River’s Edge Plaza or does it need to be reserved by a wedding planner or caterer?


Anyone associated with the event can reserve the River’s Edge Plaza. The reservation fee is $75 for a four-hour period for whomever reserves the River’s Edge Plaza. Wedding planners or caterers may not upcharge the reservation fee.

3. What hours can the reservation take place?


Reservation hours are from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. Friday, Saturday, and holidays.

4. What events require a City of Dubuque Special Event Permit?


• Any event that invites the public to attend (whether it is a free event or one that includes an entry fee).
• Public or private events that serve or consume alcohol require a Special Event Permit.
• Private events not providing or consuming alcohol do not require a Special Event Permit.

5. How do I apply for a Special Event Permit?


Click this link to download the special event packet and application. Special Event Permit packets can also be picked up at the City Clerk’s Office, 50 West 13th Street, Dubuque, IA. The special event application is a fillable form on-line and can be submitted electronically by visiting www.cityofdubuque.org/specialevents or dropped off at the City Clerk’s Office. Special Event Permits are issued by the City Clerk’s Office. Special Event Permits must be submitted at least 60 days prior to the event. Questions about the Special Event Permit process can be answered by calling (563) 589-4120.

6. Is alcohol allowed during a rental?


Yes, alcoholic liquors, wine, beer or other intoxicating beverages can be consumed providing a Special Events Permit has been issued through the City Clerk’s office and all appropriate liquor licenses have been obtained from the State of Iowa. Call the City Clerk’s office at (563) 589-4120 to see what liquor licenses may be required.

7. Can I barricade my event?


No. However if alcohol is to be served/sold/consumed through an approved Special Event Permit, event organizers would need to meet requirements. A site map is a required component of the Special Events permit process.

8. Can tents be put up near the River’s Edge Plaza?


No.

9. Is electricity available?


Yes, there are four (4) 110 amp outlets available and included in the rental fee.

10. Who is responsible for trash removal and cleanup?


All trash removal and cleanup is the responsibility of the individual or organization renting the River’s Edge Plaza.

11. Are rest rooms available?


Rest rooms are available at the nearby Port of Dubuque Marina convenience store.

12. Can I rent the River’s Edge Plaza to sell “goods”?


Only during a public event is it allowed through an approved Special Event Permit to charge for food, entertainment, clothing, or other types of wares.

13. Can my rental fee be refunded if an event is canceled in advance?


Rental fees are refundable only in limited circumstances with approval of the Public Works Director. To request a refund, please call the Leisure Services Department at (563) 589-4263. Special event damage deposits are refunded after review of the event by all applicable City departments following the event. The Special Event Permit damage deposit refund, if approved, is through the City Clerk’s Office.

14. Can I close off the River’s Edge Plaza area to pedestrians using the Riverwalk or boats docking at the plaza area?

No. The Riverwalk is not a part of the rental area of the River’s Edge Plaza. There will likely be people accessing and walking on the Riverwalk during your event or sitting on the stairs surrounding the plaza. Canoes and kayakers could be landing at the beach. Excursion boats may be docked at the plaza. Excursion boats may blow their horn while docked. The Port of Dubuque is active all season long so the sights and sounds of the River, tourists and locals will be heard all around your plaza event.

15. What is the docking schedule for large excursion boats?


Click here to see Port of Dubuque riverboat docking schedules.

16. Can I drive a vehicle or have a delivery vehicle up to River’s Edge Plaza?


No. Delivery vehicles or event vehicles should park and unload in the nearest parking lot.

17. Can I prepare food at River’s Edge Plaza?


Preparation of food is only allowed through a Special Event Permit filed by a non-profit organization only. Catered foods or foods prepared off-site are allowed.

18. Are pets allowed?


Yes. Leashed pets are allowed at River’s Edge Plaza and on the Riverwalk.

19. Can I decorate the River’s Edge Plaza or bring in chairs or other rental items?


Any decoration that you want attached to the structure must be attached with masking tape, painter’s tape or string (tacks, screws, staples, etc. are prohibited). Free standing decorations may be used if removed immediately following event. Event organizer may rent chairs and/or tables for their event. Event organizer is responsible for removing all decorations and rental items immediately following event.

20. Can I spread flower petals; throw rice, bird seed or similar item; blow bubbles?


Yes. These items may be used but the renter is responsible for cleaning the area immediately following the event and removing all evidence of their use.

21. What is the size / capacity of the River’s Edge Plaza?


You can seat approximately 280 people in chairs under the Plaza Pavilion. If tables and chairs are used, you could accommodate approximately 131 people.

22. Are fish flies ever a problem for an event?


The Mississippi River is home to fish flies. Fish Fly hatches happen some summer evenings. The hatch dates are not predictable and are a part of the ecosystem of the River. Fish flies won’t hurt humans but can be a nuisance to an event. The Public Works Department crew cleans the Plaza the morning after a fish fly hatch.

23. Is flooding of the Mississippi River ever a problem for the Plaza?


Yes. There have been times when the Mississippi River has been very high, the Plaza has been flooded. It may be a good idea to check River levels and have a back-up site planned. Flooding can occur at any time spring through fall but is most prevalent in the spring. If flooding would cause cancelation of an event, a refund would be issued.