Martha's Vineyard is world renowned as a tourist destination for family vacations and a meeting place and playground for powerful politicians, movie stars, social commentators, corporate titans and "elites" of all sorts.  In fact, the short tourist season sustains the island economy providing a windfall of seasonal income to a wide variety of local people who caterer to the needs and desires of our summer guests.

The Town of Tisbury zoning bylaws allow for "religious and recreational use" of residential properties.  As such, a tenant renting a personal residence in this Town is allowed to invite friends and family to enjoy the same property rights enjoyed by the property owner so long as Town bylaws are not violated.  However, if a tenant intends upon using my home to entertain a large number of guests for any reason:  birthday, anniversary, bar mitzvah, wedding, etc., the Landlord must be fully informed of these intentions. This residence is located in a rural area and is part of a neighborhood.  Subsequent to an interview discussing the nature of the desired "event," the Landlord may allow the tenant to host a Do-It-Yourself (DIY) event if the following precautions are agreed to in advance:

  • Tenant must not violate any bylaws of Tisbury or Oak Bluffs.
  • Tenant shall limit the total number of invited guests to 125.
  • Tenant shall end musical entertainment no later than 8:00 pm and all guests must depart the property by 9:30 pm.
  • Amplified music will only be allowed inside the Barn to suppress "noise pollution."  Acoustic music will be allowed outside the Barn.
  • Tenant shall obtain a two day insurance policy to cover the "event" in the amount of $1.0 million insuring against  loss or liability caused by damage to the property and/or general liability for use of the property by the tenant and for the service of alcholic beverages.  The tenant shall name the landlord as loss payee on the policy.  A copy of the policy must be delivered 30 days prior to the event.
  • The Tenant acknowledges the presence of the adjacent Horse Stable to the Event Premises.  The Tenant explicitly acknowledges and agrees, in addition to abiding by Town By-Laws, that no fire works or other explosive entertainment, shall be used on the Premises during the Event.
  • The Tenant is solely responsible for the hiring of any vendors and if so, agrees to provide the Landlord with current Certificates of Liability and Workman’s Compensation documents 30 days prior to the events.  In the event that such documents are not available, the Tenant agrees to provide the Landlord with a signed waiver or, if a waiver is not available, a copy of the insurance policy indicating the addition of the individual(s) to the Tenant’s policy.
  • No Fires are permitted on the property.
  • Tenant agrees to transport all guests to and from the premises on the day of the event via taxi and acknowledges that onsite parking is limited to vendors and the parties staying at the property.
  • Tenant is responsible for following all Town of Tisbury bylaws, policies and procedures related to "events."

These provisions are intended to ensure the safety and reasonableness of an "event" so as not to cause undue burden on the Landlord's property, the neighborhood or the residents that live here.  This is strictly a DIY arrangement and the tenant retains all responsibility for planning, selecting and contracting vendors and managing the "event."

If the tenant agrees to these provisions, an "event" will be allowed as part of a minimum six day rental of the property.