The City of Harrisonburg supports special events that provide enjoyable opportunities for residents and visitors, and contribute to a vibrant, livable, and sustainable city. Special events may include fund raisers, festivals, parades, 5ks, cycling, and recreational activities, and other types of gatherings in City-owned public spaces. 

The City of Harrisonburg celebrates special events for their contributions to cultural, community and economic growth. We are pleased you have selected Harrisonburg as the site for your special event. Harrisonburg strives to provide excellent assistance while facilitating your event needs. Please take into consideration that producing a successful event will usually require months of planning, much of which must be done prior to submitting a Special Event Application to the City.

City and HDR staff meet monthly to oversee the outdoor special event application process. We serve as a resource to assist event organizers during the event planning process and will coordinate the collaborative involvement of City resources. Depending on the scope of your event, a number of City and State departments may be involved in the logistics necessary to produce a safe and successfully executed event. The City of Harrisonburg Special Event Application will facilitate these requirements.

Application Process:

Download the Special Events Application here.

Download the Special Event Guidebook here.

Organizers of all special events held within the City of Harrisonburg, both new and annual events, must complete the special events application if requesting public assistance (e.g., facility rental, police or fire support, etc.) and/or the closure of a street for any scheduled event. 

  1. The completed application may be emailed or hand-delivered to the Harrisonburg Downtown Renaissance office located on the 2nd floor of the Hardesty Higgins House (212 South Main Street) between 9:00am - 4:00pm.
  2. The application will be reviewed only if it is completed and all supporting documents are included. 
  3. Event organizers may be requested to meet with City staff to review event plans, layout, and event logistics.
  4. If the application is approved by City staff, the application will be submitted to Harrisonburg City Council for their consideration.
  5. The event applicant or a representative must be present at the City Council meeting in which the event is reviewed by Council.

Application Deadlines:

  • Applications for events occurring between January 1 and May 31 will be accepted no later than 90 days prior to the event. 
  • Applications for events occurring between June 1 and December 31 will be accepted no later than February 23, 2018.
  • Applications for events which require the rental of the Turner Pavilion & Park but which do not require City supports (e.g. police support for alcohol service) will be accepted no later than 90 days prior to the event.

If you have questions related to special events in the city, please email us or call 540.432.8909.