Special Use Permits
Special Use Permits
A special use permit is required for activities that provide a benefit to an individual, group, or organization rather than the public at large and that require written authorization and management control in order to protect park resources and the public interest. Examples include: weddings, memorial services, commercial filming and/or photography, special assemblies, First Amendment activities, athletic events, or collecting of resource materials. Each of these activities requires a special use permit that must be acquired in advance. Application Form
Mesa Verde's inspiring viewpoints and natural settings are ideally suited for small, informal weddings. All weddings, regardless of size, require an approved wedding permit issued by the National Park Service. Application Form
Freedom of speech, press, religion, and assembly are constitutional rights. However, the courts have recognized that activities associated with the exercise of these rights may be reasonably regulated to protect park resources. The necessity of a permit to conduct First Amendment activities is determined by the group size.
A small group is defined as "25 people or less." A "small group" is not required to obtain a First Amendment Permit if they are located within a park designated First Amendment site and have no more than leaflets, booklets and/or hand-held signs. A permit is required for any small group that:
A large group is defined as more than "25 people" and is required to obtain a First Amendment Permit even if they are utilizing a park designated First Amendment site.
Some examples of special events that fall under First Amendment Rules:
There are no permit fees associated with First Amendment permits. Application Form
Please contact the Concessions Management Office at 970-529-4612 or 970-529-4613 for more information about Designated First Amendment sites or the application process.
Please send completed applications to:
After favorable review of your application, a Special Use Permit will be prepared and mailed to you for signature. Upon receipt, you will need to review, sign and return the permit to our office for final approval. After the permit is approved we will send you an authorized copy. The approved permit must be in your possession at the time of your wedding or event.
Most applications require a minimum of 3 weeks to fully process.
Special Use Permit Fees
Permit Fees are non-refundable and are based on an annual cost recovery analysis conducted by the Concessions Management Office. These fees include the cost of permit processing and administration. An additional fee may include monitoring depending upon the event. Please contact the park for fee information. Payment can be made by cashier's check, money order or personal check. Credit cards are not accepted at this time.
For more information about Special Use Permits:
Did You Know?
Cliff Palace is the largest cliff dwelling at Mesa Verde National Park. It has 150 rooms, plus an additional 75 open areas. Twenty-one of the rooms are kivas, and 25 to 30 rooms have residential features. The number of Ancestral Puebloans living in Cliff Palace at any one time was 100 to 120.