Because it is illegal to close or block a city sidewalk or street, it is necessary to apply for special permission before holding parades, block parties, and similar events that could obstruct traffic.
If your organization or group plans to hold an event that would require that a sidewalk or street be closed, please contact the mayor’s office to obtain an event request packet or download one by clicking here. Your request must be reviewed by several administrative officers, so please start this process at least two weeks before your planned event.
The city does not control Town Square, including the Rotary Amphitheater, located behind the Elkins Depot Welcome Center. These are the property of the Randolph County Development Authority, and the city plays no role in granting permission to use this space. Please contact them with questions.
Guidance for Downtown Decorations
City officials, Elkins Main Street, and the Elkins-Randolph County Chamber of Commerce have collaborated to produce guidelines for downtown decorations. The purpose of these guidelines is to avoid problems, such as obscured traffic control signs and signals or impeded rights-of-way, while supporting the efforts of community organizations to make our downtown even more attractive and appealing during special events and seasons. (Note that even decoration plans that do not involve blocking sidewalks or roadways, or otherwise requiring review by city officials, should still be coordinated with Elkins Main Street to avoid conflicts with other seasonal decorating activities, dates, and events.)
Event Insurance and Indemnification
Please note that the city will not approve your event request unless you submit an insurance certificate, on a policy of at least $1 million in liability insurance, naming “City of Elkins” as an additional insured party. If you or your organization does not already carry this form of insurance, you should contact an insurance agency to obtain event insurance (typically $250-$500, depending on the nature of your event).
The city also requires that you complete the “Indemnity, Defense, and Save Harmless Agreement” that is part of the event request packet.
Downtown Sound System Requests
City of Elkins controls access to an outdoor sound system that includes speakers mounted on utility poles along Davis Avenue from city hall to Second Street and along Third Street from the Elkins Depot Welcome Center to Kerens Avenue. The purpose of this system is to enable the broadcast of general public service announcements and/or playing music during downtown events.
This sound system was installed in 2019, in partnership with the Elkins-Randolph Chamber of Commerce, Our Town, Elkins Main Street, Davis & Elkins College, and other stakeholders, with the city funding the $25,000 installation cost. At the time of the installation, it was decided among these stakeholders and memorialized in a city council policy that operation of the sound system, such as to play music during downtown events, would be left to outside organizations who have applied and been approved to do so. To recoup some of the $25,000 taxpayer-funded installation cost, a $40 daily fee is charged to organizations wishing to use the downtown sound system.
Because a successful sound program requires someone to not only start and stop it but monitor it for and respond to problems throughout its duration, council’s policy requires that all aspects of any approved sound program be handled by the outside organization, not by city staff.
Control of the system is through an interface device borrowed from the city that may be connected to drop points at several utility poles downtown. These connection points are outdoors and require monitoring throughout the sound program. Outside organizations who have borrowed an interface device for this purpose are responsible for its safekeeping and return.
Although use of this system is encouraged for the purpose of playing music and making announcements during outdoors events, approval will not be granted for programs involving extended verbal addresses such as recorded or live speeches or lectures. Also, anyone proposing to broadcast copyrighted music is responsible for securing a license to do so.
Organizations may apply to use this system by submitting an application to the mayor’s executive secretary at least two months prior to the scheduled event. Please read and complete the application carefully, including the General Conditions found on page two, as the omission of any required documentation may result in delayed approval or denial of the application.