Event/Commercial Permits

Photo show a newly wedded couple in the forest.Wedding - Reunions - Sporting Events - Festivals - Outfitters/Guides

Permits for events such as weddings, family reunions (outside of developed recreation sites), sporting events, festivals and such are required.

In addition, commercial activities such as outfitter and guide services, are required to obtain a special use permit.

What are Non-Commercial Group Use Events?

Permits are required for groups of 75 people or more, such as weddings, family reunions, large social gatherings, etc., excluding group sites in designated campgrounds. Click here for the application (FS-2700-3b). Non-commercial group use is not applicable within Wilderness. Applications should be received by the District Office a minimum of 45 days in advance.

What are Recreation Events?

Recreation events are commercial activities requiring temporary special use authorizations for use of NFS lands. Examples of recreation events include, but are not limited to, animal, bicycle, motocross, or triathlon type races; jeep rallies; dog trials; fishing contests; rendezvous; rodeos; adventure games; youth treks; wagon trains; concerts; and other similar events. A permit is required for these types of events regardless of the number of people involved in the activity.

What are Outfitter and Guides?

There are many types of outfitted and guided services provided on National Forest lands. The traditional types primarily involve hunting and fishing in a backcountry setting, but today the industry is highly-diverse and includes whitewater floating and jet-boating, backpacking, mountaineering, snowmobiling, cross-country skiing, mountain biking, van touring, and dog sledding. Nonprofits and educational groups, such as schools and universities, are also frequently considered outfitters, as are those who use the National Forests for rehabilitation and therapeutic benefits. (Brochure)

How do I apply?

Please contact the appropriate District Ranger Officer for more information on recreation special uses. Contact information for each Ranger District Office can be found here. We know that you don't want to plan an event, only to find out at the last minute a permit is needed. If you are in doubt about the need for a permit, or have questions about the permitting process, please give us a call!

A pre-application meeting with the permit administrator is required to ensure the proposal is an appropriate and authorized use on NFS lands. View the Forms page for application forms. The permit administrator can verify if your application is complete. An incomplete application will delay review of your proposal.

The USFS Special Uses Home Page provides additional information and links regarding the special use permit process.

For commercial photography and film-making, and many types of research permits, refer to Other & Land Use Permits for more information.

Photo shows a string of horse and mules used by an outfitter.