Outdoor Special Events Office


Alert symbolBuncombe County + City of Asheville reinstates mask mandate, reactivates State of Emergency

Aug. 18, 2021 — In alignment with Executive Order 224, and Buncombe County’s Declaration of Local State of Emergency, the City of Asheville has reactivated its State of Emergency in response to increasing transmission rates of COVID-19. Effective immediately, masks are required indoors at all publicly accessible facilities, including businesses and restaurants. Indoor public spaces include business establishments, offices and workplaces, public transportation facilities and vehicles, and any indoor place the public is invited and allowed to enter and gather. Masks are recommended but not required within outdoor settings where social distancing can be achieved. The order applies to all people who are at least 5 years old, and face coverings are recommended for all people over the age of 2.

What about festivals and special events within Asheville’s outdoor public spaces? At present time, the emergency declaration states that masks are not required within outdoor settings where social distancing can be achieved. For most events where attendees interact with individuals outside of their immediate households and where crowds gather, that means everyone must mask up. 

This information is subject to change in light of new Centers for Disease Control & Prevention guidance and North Carolina Executive Orders, further agency guidance, or local government declarations. For more information on the City and County’s preparations and response to COVID-19, please visit buncombecounty.org/bcready


Google Group buttonStay Connected & Engaged – Join the Group

The Outdoor Special Events Office administers an exclusive Google Group for event organizers, businesses and entrepreneurs who use Asheville’s special events as a platform for development and growth. Group members receive general alerts and advisories, information and updates on event production, regulatory and procedure changes, and industry news on trends and best practices. Group members are encouraged to actively participate, share opportunities to collaborate on projects, ask for peer feedback on ideas, highlight new events that are in search of vendors or contracted services, even share challenges faced at special events and festivals that we can learn from. Request to join here.


Permitting Outdoor Special Events on Public Property

19-20 Outdoor Special Event Guide Cover Image

  Step 1: Review the Outdoor Special Event Guide. A comprehensive guide to fees, timelines, policies, and production requirements.

  Step 2: Click here if you’d like to schedule a one-on-one phone call or office visit for questions and assistance.

  Step 3: Check our working calendar of the year’s public space uses currently in planning.

  Step 4: Submit a Public Space Inquiry Form with your top 3 preferred locations and dates for the event. (10 months in adv. max.)

  Step 5: We’ll be back in touch in 2 weeks with an invitation to apply, including a link to the required applications and forms.

 

outdoor special event resource librarySpecial Event Resource Library

The links to resources in this document are available for all event organizers. While not comprehensive of every item that may be needed for your event, these tools and informational resources can go a long way to help you plan the best and safest event possible. In this library, you will find supplemental application forms and documents pertaining to event safety, food service, local event service providers, property information and maps, a checklist tool for the City of Asheville’s Outdoor Special Event permitting requirements with due dates, and much more. This document is updated frequently with new information as it becomes available. You’ll want to save the doc link to your favorites!

 

Street Performer Guidelines

Permits are not required for sidewalk performers who wish to busk downtown during periods when sidewalks, streets, and parks are not otherwise reserved for outdoor special events. Check out the pamphlet and the full list of rules and etiquette here, or find a physical copy at the Pack Square Park Pavilion, at the Asheville Downtown Association’s brochure rack, and at Asheville City Hall.  The rules and regulations are outlined in an easy-to-digest format — first with some busking etiquette from the Asheville Buskers Collective (take two hour turns, watch your crowd size, keep your amps turned down) and second, with some rules from the City such as to avoid obstructing sidewalks, doorways or streets and provide a minimum of 6 feet of pedestrian passageway. No selling or displays of any tangible good in exchange for money or donation is allowed. Performances may only be between the hours of 10 a.m. and 10 p.m.

 

Map Image

(Temporarily Suspended) Special Event Location Map – 2 Week Outlook

The locations of permitted special events on public property are one of many features available to view within the Operational Layers on the City’s ArcGIS geographic information system. Click here to view a map of outdoor special event locations, timeframes, and event contact information. The map is updated once each week for the following two-week period. The ArcGIS system also allows for additional features to be added by clicking the Layers icon in the upper right-hand corner of the map. Additional features include the locations of nearby parking garages, public restrooms, ART bus routes and stops, bike routes, greenways, parks, streets, sidewalks, and public art.

 


Outdoor Special Events held on a Privately-Owned Property?

You will not need to consult with or apply for permits through this office for events held exclusively and entirely within indoor or outdoor privately-owned properties. Instead, please visit the Development Services Department located in the Public Works Building at 161 South Charlotte Street (828-259-5946) to apply for the appropriate temporary use permits with a residential or commercial permit facilitator.

A Temporary Use Permit Application for an event held on a privately-owned property will most often require:

  1. Site map showing details of proposed temporary uses
  2. Proof of property ownership or lease
  3. List of contractors (electrical, tent/inflatable rental services, construction) involved in the event
  4. An Emergency Action Plan

Electronic Submittal: To submit your application electronically, please use this form to attach and transmit the application with attachments for review.  Upon receipt of the submission, a permit facilitator will be in touch to collect fees and advise of the next steps.


Contact Information

Jon Fillman, Community Event Manager
828-259-5738

Community & Economic Development Department

Asheville City Hall
70 Court Plaza, Floor 5
Asheville, NC 28801

Mailing Address
PO Box 7148,
Asheville, NC, 28802

 

Impact of special events report

 

Reviewed for accuracy 12/10/21