Burning in the City of Sun Prairie

Any type of burning within the City of Sun Prairie requires a burn permit, except for the conditions listed below. To obtain a permit contact the Fire Department at 608-837-5066.


  • At no time shall trash or building materials be burned.
  • Small businesses, commercial enterprises, and industries may not use burn barrels or engage in other open burning.

Burning Permit Conditions

Burning permits are good provided the following conditions are met:

  • Burning is restricted to daylight hours
  • Burning is allowed for bonfires, ceremonial, campfires, alternative landscape burning, and for training purposes for the fire department
  • Permit must be granted by the Fire Chief or his designee and signed by the City Administrator

Permit Not Required

Permissible burning without a permit:

  • Using a below-grade outdoor fireplaces, which must include a metal bowl for holding wood not to exceed 6 square feet, and a cover available to extinguish the fire. The cover must completely enclose the surface of the metal bowl. Only dry wood may be burned. The fireplace may not be located within 10 feet of a building, and the smoke cannot create a nuisance. A fire extinguisher, garden hose, or other 1st aid fire control must also be readily available.
  • Commercially manufactured outdoor fireplaces, including a metal bowl or pit less than 8 square feet in surface area with the same previously listed stipulations are also permitted.
  • Use of clay fireplaces meeting all requirements for outdoor fireplaces is allowed.
  • Liquid petroleum (lp) gas fueled cooking devices and charcoal grills or other open flame cooking devices shall not be used on a balcony, porch, or wood deck, except in single-family and 2-family dwellings where 1 dwelling unit is not directly above the other. They shall not be used within 10 feet of a building, structure, or lot line except in single-family and 2-family dwellings where one dwelling unit is not directly above the other.

Burning Not Allowed

Burning that is not permissible under any circumstances:

  • Burning of construction debris, garbage, brush, or yard waste is prohibited.
  • Burning of any materials in streets, curbs, gutters, or sidewalks is prohibited.


Individuals violating the ordinance are subject to fines starting at $164 per occurrence, in addition to court costs, state fines, and penalties. View entire open burning ordinance online: Code 8.12.010.