Frequently Asked Questions

Parks and Recreation Logo
Town of Warrenton Special Events - Frequently Asked Questions

Special Event Flow Chart

Do I need a Special Event Permit for my event?

Special Event Permits are required for any event that utilizes a public space (including a street or sidewalk) OR uses a space in a way that may disrupt traffic patterns, right of way, or pedestrian safety. Special Event Permits are also required for events on private property that incorporate an amusement device (moon bounce), food truck/vendors selling food, or are open to the public.

If you answer “yes” to any of the following questions, you will need to obtain a Special Event Permit:
    1.  Will a public street need to be closed?
    2.  Is the event located on public property?
    3.  Will the public right-of-way be impacted?
    4.  Is the event open to the public?
    5.  Will the event require traffic control?
    6.  Does the event feature a moon bounce or food truck?

Still not sure? Reach out to Lauren Kruck at Lkruck@warrentonva.gov for assistance in determining whether your event requires a Town permit. 

What is the process for obtaining a Special Event Permit?

The first step in obtaining a Special Event Permit is to fill out the Special Event application (link to fillable PDF application). Once completed, this can be emailed to specialevents@warrentonva.gov or submitted in person at the WARF (800 Waterloo Rd., Warrenton).

There is a $100 application fee that can be paid in person at the WARF or online (we will email you a link to pay once your application has been received).

A Certificate of Insurance (COI) naming The Town of Warrenton (21 Main Street, Warrenton VA 20186) as additional insured in the amount of $1,000,000.00 is also required for all events. If your organization does not have existing insurance, free-standing policies can be obtained from Gatherguard at https://gatherguard.com/.

Once the application & application fee are received, you will be contacted about coming in to meet with the Special Events committee. This committee meets every Wednesday afternoon and is made up of representatives from various Town departments. At this meeting, we will review your event and discuss any questions or concerns.

You may be required to submit additional paperwork including an event map or additional permits including an Amusement Device Permit (see below).

Once the paperwork has been reviewed and your event has been approved, you will receive an approval letter and overall cost estimate from the Town. See below “What will the total cost be for my event?” for more information on what these fees may include.

After your event has concluded, you will receive an invoice for these associated fees. You may also be requested to meet with the Special Events Committee again for an After-Action review of your event.

When should I submit my application for a Special Event Permit?

Special Event Permits cannot be issued until 6 months prior to the event. You are welcome to contact Lauren Kruck at Lkruck@warrentonva.com if you would like to discuss your event before the official permit application process begins.

What will the total cost be for my event?

After meeting with the Special Events Committee & submitting all paperwork, if your event is approved you will receive an approval letter with a cost estimate. These include any costs associated with Warrenton Police Department presence, Public Works staff hours (to shut down roads, drop off a dumpster, run a street sweeper, etc.), cones/barricade rental, fire marshal/building official time to inspect a food truck, etc. Rates can be found here (link to invoice form). 

After the event has concluded, you will receive the official invoice via email to the email address on the application. Payment is due within 30 days of receipt of the invoice.

Are there any other permits I will need for my event? (Moon bounce, inflatables, alcohol)

Any moon bounce, mechanical ride, or inflatable amusement device requires an additional permit. Please click https://townofwarrenton.portal.opengov.com/categories/1076/record-types/6459 to access the Amusement Device Permit online application.

Any event that includes alcohol will require an ABC permit for each alcohol vendor. Click https://www.abc.virginia.gov/licenses/get-a-license/banquet-licenses to access the Virginia ABC permits website.

What are the rules for having a food truck at my event? What about vendor tents/canopies?

Licensed food trucks that have been approved by the Virginia Department of Health (https://www.vdh.virginia.gov/environmental-health/food-safety-in-virginia/tfe/) may take part in approved Special Events at the request of the event organizer. Food trucks must be inspected & approved beforehand by a Town of Warrenton building official and undergo an onsite inspection at the beginning of the event. This will be arranged as part of your Special Event application process.

All rules and requirements for food trucks and vendor tents can be found here: Food Truck and Tent Guidelines (PDF). Failure to comply with these requirements could result in the food truck's dismissal or the tent's removal from your event.

Do food trucks need to pay meals tax?

All food trucks and any organization selling food as part of a Special Event must register for and pay the Town’s 6% meals tax. To register for meals tax or ask any questions, please contact Chrissy Cooper at taxes@warrentonva.gov.


Special Events FAQs (PDF)