Exhibitor Guidelines

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Decorative Materials

Nothing may be taped, nailed, tacked, or otherwise affixed to ceilings, floors, painted surfaces, fire sprinklers, columns, fabric or decorative walls.  The release of glitter and distribution of any adhesive-backed sticker is also strictly prohibited. 

All decorative materials must be flame-proof in accordance with the Rochester Fire Department regulations.  This includes drapes, banners, all decorative fabrics, poster paper, foam core board, as well as all hangings, curtains, and drops, Christmas trees, projection screens, plastics, straw, hay, organic materials and all other decorative materials.

Smoking Policy

Under the provisions of the Minnesota Clean Indoor Air Act, the Minnesota Freedom to Breathe law and Olmsted County’s Smoke-Free Workplace Ordinance, the Mayo Civic Center is a non-smoking building. Smoking is strictly prohibited in all areas both public as well as back-of-house at all times. Smoking is also not permitted within 15 feet of entrances, exits, open windows and ventilation intakes according to the state laws of Minnesota.


When installing carpeting in the facility, your service contractor must use a low-residue tape such as Scotch Brand 2090.  Ordinary types of carpet tape damage the special concrete and terrazzo floor surfaces when they are removed.

Lost & Found

All found articles are placed in Mayo Civic Center’s Administrative Office. To inquire about lost items please call 507-328-2220.


Vehicles are permitted in exhibit hall areas strictly for purposes of loading and unloading freight. Unless they represent part of display, vehicles may not remain parked in the exhibit halls. Display vehicles must conform to state and city fire codes as it pertains to fuel tanks and battery connections.  Overnight parking in the loading dock area is strictly prohibited unless authorized in advance by your Event Coordinator.

Licenses and Permits

All exhibitors selling merchandise from the show floor are required to have a state tax identification number and are required to pay taxes directly to the State of Minnesota.

Minnesota State Tax

Minnesota state tax information can be obtained from the State of Minnesota Department of Revenue, (800-657-3777)  600 Robert Street North, Saint Paul. See the State's sales tax web page for more information. http://www.taxes.state.mn.us/


Our staff installs your telecommunication lines and instruments and offers you a variety of special features for voice and data lines.  All services must be pre-ordered and charged to a credit card prior to move-in.

Electrical Services

All electrical connections must be made by the Mayo Civic Center’s stagehands.  The current rates and advance scheduling for service are available by contacting your Promoter or Event Coordinator.


Housekeeping will vacuum non-vendor areas - aisles, registration, lounge areas during non-open hours for a fee.  They are not able to enter a vendor booth to vacuum those areas. Exhibitors are responsible for disposal of crates and other debris.  If necessary a dumpster can be arranged for a fee.


Most areas of Mayo Civic Center are fully accessible.  For specific information on drop-off sites and elevator locations please contact the Event Coordinator.


With the exception of ADA service animals or animals used as part of Mayo Civic Center approved exhibits or events, animals are not permitted in the Facility.  Requests must be specific and made in advance.

Shuttle Bus Drop Off Locations

Circle Drive. the circular drive in front of the Mayo Civic Center and along Center Street are available for passenger pickup and drop off.  Please contact your Event Coordinator to make arrangements. 

Cooking and Food-Warming Devices

Cooking and food warming devices shall be placed on non-combustible materials, kept two feet from any combustible materials, isolated from the public by a four foot space, and  limited to 288 square inches of cooking area.  Table cloths or draping used on tables near cooking equipment must be treated with a flame retardant and be fireproof.   

Booths containing cooking devices must have a fire extinguisher readily available for use.  Fire extinguishers must be fully charged and in operable condition.


Nothing shall be hung from or affixed to any sprinkler heads or piping.  All exit doors shall be in operable condition at all times. Exit signs, manual pull stations, fire department handsets and fire hose cabinets shall not be obstructed in any manner.  All entrances, exits, aisles, stairways, lobbies, passageways and fire and life safety devices shall be unobstructed at all times.  Booth construction shall be substantial and fixed in position in specified area for the duration of the show.  Easels, signs, etc., shall not be placed beyond booth area into aisles.

Prohibited Materials, Processes, & Equipment

The following materials, processes, or equipment are prohibited:  

  1. Overnight sleeping in any facility
  2. Hazardous refrigerants such as sulfur dioxide and ammonia
  3. Electrical equipment or installation not conforming to code
  4. Fireworks or pyrotechnics (must have a permit) 
  5. Blasting Agents
  6. Explosives
  7. Flammable cryogenic gasses
  8. Aerosol cans with flammable propellants.
  9. Smoking
  10. Fueling of motor vehicles
  11. Class I liquids, including gasoline
  12. Gasoline operated cooking equipment
  13. Wood matches with all-surface strikes
  14. Portable heating equipment
  15. Propane over 20 pound containers/closer than 20 feet

Combustion Engines

Any autos, trucks, motorcycles, boats, other motorized vehicles or other flammable fueled engines displayed shall conform to the following requirements:
Fuel tanks, unless never having held fuel, shall be maintained between 1/8 and 1/4 full.  Caps for fuel tank fill pipes shall be maintained locked.  If it is not practical to attach such a cap, an alternate method shall be employed with prior permission from the facility or Fire Marshal.  No fueling may take place in the building.  

The electrical system shall be de-energized, either by:

  1. Removing the battery(ies)
  2. Removing the battery cables; or
  3. Disconnecting both the battery cables and covering them with electrical tape or other similar insulating material.

Prohibited Equipment and Operations During Set-up/Dismantling
The following equipment or operations are prohibited during exhibition, booth construction, or dismantling:  
  1. Material-handling equipment other than electrical or propane powered
  2. Electrically powered tools and equipment other than those listed by Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. or approved by a nationally recognized testing laboratory
  3. Portable heating equipment
  4. Welding, cutting or brazing without special permit from the City of Rochester Bureau of Fire Prevention
  5. Painting with flammable or volatile paints and finishes
  6. Other equipment or operations that increase risk to fire and life safety
  7. Gasoline or diesel fueled forklifts or front end loaders

Materials, Processes or Equipment Requiring Special Permission or Permits for Use

Use, display or storage of the following restricted material, processes, or equipment is subject to approval and requires special permission from the Fire Marshal:  

  1. Natural gas fire equipment
  2. Cooking equipment
  3. Open flame devices
  4. Candles (require protective shields) and may not be lit in exhibits or tradeshows
  5. Exhibits involving hazardous processing or materials
  6. Firearms and ammunition
  7. Pressure vessels
  8. Fossil fuel powered equipment
  9. Hydraulically powered equipment using flammable fluids
  10. Radiation producing devices, including lasers
  11. Flammable liquids
  12. Electrical equipment or installations not conforming to the National Electrical Code
  13. Other materials or processes judged by the facility Fire Marshal to increase the risk to fire and life safety
  14. Fireworks or Pyrotechnics (must have a permit)
  15. Corn pellets for fireplaces

Special Approval

To obtain special approval, the exhibitor shall submit in writing to the Fire Marshal:   

  1. The nature of the process or equipment to be used
  2. The quantity of restricted material to be used
  3. What provisions will be made to provide fire suppression or other life safety measures which will prevent any injury, harm, or damage.  The request must be submitted to facility management 30 days in advance of the show preferably with pictures.  It will then be given to the Fire Marshal who will approve or reject the request.  Written notification will be returned to the originator of the request.

Move-In/Move-Out Procedures

Only hand carried freight will be allowed through Mayo Civic Center lobbies.

The major decorator of an exhibition event shall maintain control of the exhibit floor during set-up and dismantling:  

  1. No vehicles will be allowed in loading docks or exhibit halls without proper ID
  2. Only company-owned vehicles with proper signage (permanently affixed decals) or temporary loading/unloading permits will be allowed in work areas.
  3. Independent decorators and sub-contractors must be properly bonded, insured and have access permission to loading/unloading areas through the major decorator.
  4. Forklifts and other heavy carts will not be allowed in carpeted areas.

Keep all fire lanes clear at all times for immediate use by emergency vehicles. Violators will be ticketed and towed at owner's expense.