If it will just stop raining and warm up a bit, Historic City News readers are accustomed to this time of year for outdoor activities and events leading up to the summer — Celtic Festival, Rhythm and Ribs, Romanza, various marathons, walks and runs, tournaments for fishing, volleyball, and golf.
Most of the events in St Augustine, to some degree, take place on public property and there are regulations that govern their approval — that means that you can’t just “show up” with six-dozen of your favorite friends and shut down a city street.
“A growing number of events depend on the facilities made available by the City of St Augustine and the essential support services only a municipality can provide,” Public Affairs Director Paul Williamson, whose department coordinates public events, advised reporters. “By making these facilities and services available to organizers at reasonable costs, the city supports the successful staging of events without placing an undue financial burden on public resources or diminishing the level of services the municipality is required to provide to residents, businesses and visitors.”
According to a policy provided by Williamson to Historic City News today, those publicly owned areas which are available for events are classified into three categories: venues, right-of-ways, and open use areas.
Each has location-specific requirements, as well as a number of universal requirements — like general liability insurance naming the City of St Augustine as an additional insured.
We obtained a copy of the current, updated schedule of fees charged for various popular locations around town. Although the City does not screen use of public property based on the content of, or expected reaction to, ideas and speech being presented, the City does vet the applications through the appropriate public safety agencies and public works department using a checklist that encompasses all of the expected approvals necessary to hold the event.
Application Fee (nonrefundable)
use fee per event day
use fee per shoulder day
Gazebo at Plaza de la Constitution
use fee per day
St Augustine Municipal Marina
use fee per day
Willie Galimore Center
Large room use fee per hour
Small room use fee per hour
Both rooms use fee per hour
use fee per hour (one hour limit)
Visitor Information Center
VIC use fee per day
Promenade use fee per day
Fountain Garden use fee per day
Solid waste services
Roll off – per unit
Roll-off disposal fee (based on volume)
Dumpster – per unit (includes disposal)
Trash cart – per unit
Streets and grounds services
Drop off/retrieval (per hour)
Traffic control devices (per unit)
water barricade (service personnel equipment)
Water: initial 3,000 gallons
per additional 1,000 gallons
Electric: Francis Field, based on consumption
Public safety services
Personnel (per officer per hour, two hour minimum)
additional costs if equipment is required
Personnel (per firefighter per hour, two hour minimum)
engine unit (per hour, one hour minimum)
In reviewing the operations profile, the Event Review Committee will consider:
• If the site can adequately accommodate the event taking into account the site’s infrastructure, the event’s expected attendance and format (i.e. festival, concert, fair, run, parade).
• If the event coincides with other events and thus may place an undue burden on the delivery of city services to the event and/or to the community.
• If the event is in compliance with all permitting and licensing requirements from other jurisdictions, including federal, state, county and city.
• If the event may pose a public threat to residents, businesses, and visitors, not considering content of speech, message, or reaction to the message.
• How the event will impact neighborhoods in the immediate vicinity (i.e. noise, litter, traffic).
• To what extent the organizers, if responsible for a previous event on public property, adhered to city ordinances or policies or other applicable laws.
• If the event will place a undue strain on city services including those for crowd control, policing, security, parking, solid waste or traffic.
• The organizer’s demonstrated ability to manage the event.