Downtown Portland’s Dunk Tank Dynasty – Everything you need to know about Dunk Tank Rentals

Dunk tank rentals are super easy in Portland Oregon

Renting a Dunk Tank in Portland is an easy task.  There are multiple Portland Dunk Tank rental companies available that are competitively priced, insured, and competent at providing their service. Before you eagerly go placing a giant bucket of water at your Portland office, there are few things you should know about the actual water rental itself, so that you can plan your dunking event accordingly.

Most Risk Management groups won’t allow Dunk Tanks

This is more of a problem for school carnivals than it is for corporate events, but you should definitely check with your risk management group before booking. Many schools will not allow a standing body of water that is above a certain depth. They consider it too high of a risk for drowning, and don’t want to deal with the potential consequences should the unthinkable happen. If your corporate event or school carnival won’t allow a traditional dunk tank, make sure you investigate dunk tank alternatives.

Drive up Access is Required

Where are you planning on putting your dunk tank? Dunk Tanks are typically trailers that travel horizontally while being delivered. They can be moved by hand,  but if a small car can’t access the location, it is doubtful that you will be able to get it to where you want it to go. Some companies offer collapsible dunk tank rentals that can be put in tighter areas not typically accessible by vehicles, but it will be easier to find a vendor if you plan for an easy access spot in a parking lot, or in front of a building entrance adjacent to the road.

It Takes Time to Fill

500 gallons is a lot of water, and is the total volume of your average Portland dunk tank rental. Make sure you coordinate with your event rental company to arrive at your event well before the start time. You will need at least 15 minutes to setup the actual dunk tank, and an additional hour to fill the tank to the top. Check your water pressure ahead of time to make sure your hose flows at a good rate, so there aren’t any issues on the day of your event. Sometimes it is possible to work with the Portland Fire Department to schedule a time for them to come out and fill your tank super fast. Be careful though, sometime the water from fire hydrants is not suitable for humans to swim in.

The Water can get Gross

Speaking of not being suitable for humans… How long is your event? As your dunk tank is used, over time the water quality can degrade. With multiple individuals repeatedly dunking into the same water, you can introduce dirt, grass, and other not so pleasant elements. If your event is over 4 hours in length, it is wise to schedule some time to replace the water in the dunk tank.  You don’t want your guests to be put off and not eat your delicious catering just because of some dirty water! If you are looking for a quicker way to keep the water clean, consider purchasing bromine tablets and adding them to tank prior to the event.

500 Gallons of Water have to go somewhere

Your event is over and your dunk tank rental was a huge success! Cleanup time has come, and you go to drain the dunk tank. Oops. I guess we shouldn’t have put a giant tub of water next to Mrs. Gretchen’s brand new flower bed. What goes in must come out. Make sure you plan ahead in the placement of your dunk tank and put it in an area where such a large volume of water won’t cause damage.  If possible, placing the tank next to a large sewer drain or equivalent works best.  If you absolutely can’t find a good place with drainage, you can always hire a Portland septic company to come pump the water out at the end of your event. Just check with your rental company before doing so.

Don’t let these minor logistical challenges discourage you from booking a dunk tank for your next Portland corporate event or school carnival, just consider it one of the many rewarding event challenges that can be overcome!

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Guide to Portland Park Party Planning

Portland Park events

If you are hosting a corporate picnic, public event, or children’s birthday party at a Portland Park, there are a few things you need to know prior to showing up on the day of your event. Portland parks and recreation department has many rules, restrictions, and fees to consider when you start the event planning process.  Make sure you understand all of the following requirements and restrictions before sending out invites to your guests!

Reservations

The first thing to check when you start planning your Portland park party is if the site you want is available. The Portland Parks & Rec website has an online reservation tool that can be used for both parks and other venues owned by the department.  In addition to being able to see what parks and venues are available, you’ll be able to access tools like maps, venue descriptions, and maximum capacities.  With Portland’s vast inventory of parks and venues, you should be able to find a location that fits your party, even if your primary choice isn’t available. As always, the earlier you start planning your event, the more options you will have.

Fees

There are a several different park fees that you should know going into the planning process. Parks are expensive to maintain, and there is additional liability the city takes on by letting you host a party at a Portland Park. The fees can vary by park location and what type of event you are hosting, but here is the basic rundown,

  • Park Site Reservation Fee: Starts at $21 for simple parties (like a birthday party) but can go much higher depending on the park and amount of space being requested
  • $100 Special Use Fee: If you are planning on your party being more than a simple barbecue, you can count on a special use fee. This is a fee that they will charge you for pretty much anything beyond the simplest of parties.
  • $176 Inflatable Usage Fee: If you are planning on having an inflatable or bounce house at your event, be prepared to pay the City of Portland $176 for each inflatable you have at the park.  This can get pretty pricey depending on how many inflatables you have, so make sure you prepare your event budget accordingly.
  • $66 Vehicle Access Pass: If you have any vehicles or event vendors that need to access the event location, each vehicle will need to have a $66 vehicle access pass. Again, if you have several vendors or a lot of equipment to be brought in, make sure you schedule these costs accordingly in your event budget.

Event Liability Insurance

For any event requiring the use of inflatables, bounce houses, or other specialty equipment, Portland Parks require that you carry a $1 million umbrella insurance policy and list the City of Portland as an additional insured on the policy. This is a simple enough task as long as you select a reputable event rental company.   Most established and licensed rental companies will far exceed the $1 million insured requirement.

Event Layout and Maps

Often there can be gas pipes, electrical, and sewage running beneath park sites. To avoid surprises on event day, send the parks department a layout map of your event ahead of time. The more detail your map has the better. This way, if there is an issue, the parks department will let you know ahead of time what needs to be moved. If you leave this detail to fate, you run the risk of a Park Supervisor telling you to move or shutdown an inflatable ride or bounce house on the day of the event.

Event Hours

Most Portland Parks are officially open from 8am to 9pm. Uless you do something about it, your event will need to end by 9pm.  Failing to evacuate the park by 9pm may result in a Park Supervisor asking you and your guests to leave at the peak of your celebration. To avoid this party pooper outcome, schedule your event earlier in the evening, or work with the parks department to request an exception to their traditional closure rules.

Alcohol at your Event

If you are planning on having alcohol at your event in a Portland park, the city actually has some pretty reasonable rules in this department. If your event is less than 50 people and everyone is bringing their own alcohol, you do not need to do anything. If your event has more than 50 people and/or the alcohol is being served or provided by a single entity, then you will be required to provide proof of insurance to the parks department.

 

If all of this is confusing in anyway, you can always consult the Portland Parks and Rec picnic guide or just give them a call with any questions you might have. We have found the representatives to be extremely helpful and knowledgeable in our conversations.  As long as you follow this simple guide and Portland Park rules and guidelines, you should have a successful event to add to the books!

 

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