Permits & Reservations

 

Permits

Special Park Uses

A special park use is defined as a short-term activity that takes place in a park area, and that:

  • Provides a benefit to an individual, group, or organization rather than the public at large;

  • Requires written authorization and some degree of management control from the Park Service in order to protect park assets and the public interest;

  • Is not prohibited by law or regulation;

  • Is not initiated, sponsored, or conducted by the Park Service;
  • Is not managed under a concession contract, a recreation activity for which the National Park Service charges a fee, or a lease.

Commercial Filming & Still Photography

Changes to Commercial Filming Permits on Park Land

On January 22, 2021, the US District Court for the District of Columbia issued a decision in Price v. Barr determining the permit and fee requirements applying to commercial filming under 54 USC 100905, 43 CFR Part 5, and 36 CFR Part 5 are unconstitutional. The National Park Service is currently determining how this decision will be implemented.

Following the recent court decision, the National Park Service will not be implementing or enforcing the commercial filming portions of 43 CFR Part 5 until further notice, including accepting applications, issuing permits, enforcing the terms and conditions of permits, issuing citations related to permits, or collecting cost recovery and location fees for commercial filming activities.

As regulations regarding commercial filming permits are being reassessed, those interested in commercial filming activities on land managed by the National Park Service are encouraged to contact the park directly for more information about filming in the park and to discuss how to minimize potential impacts to visitors and sensitive park resources.

Do I need a permit to film?

Currently, the National Park Service is not issuing commercial filming permits, but is in the process of evaluating how best to regulate filming activities that affect visitors and park resources. All applicable laws and regulations governing activities and public use in parks still apply, including park hours and areas open and closed to the public. Videographers, filmers, producers, directors, and other staff associated with commercial filming are reminded that rules and regulations that apply to all park visitors still apply to filming activities even if no permit is needed for their activity. Check with the park staff for more information on closures, sensitive resources, and other safety tips.

Are filmers still required to pay fees to film in parks?

As of January 22, 2021, the National Park Service is no longer collecting application or location fees, or cost recovery for filming.

Still Photography

When is a permit needed?

Price v. Barr had no impact on how the National Park Service regulates still photography, so there are no changes in how the National Park Service regulates that activity. Still photographers require a permit only when:

  1. the activity takes place at location(s) where or when members of the public are generally not allowed; or

  2. the activity uses model(s), sets(s), or prop(s) that are not a part of the location's natural or cultural resources or administrative facilities; or

  3. a park would incur additional administrative costs to monitor the activity.

If none of these conditions exist, a permit is not required. We request that photographers contact the park anyway so that we are aware of their activities and can provide them with the appropriate park information. Photography that poses a visitor use conflict will be considered for permitting outside of regular park visitation hours only.

How to Apply for a Permit

Permit applications are linked below or you can obtain them through the permit office by calling (843) 883-3123 x225 or sending an e-mail. You should submit a completed application along with the application fee as far in advance of your planned date as possible. In addition, you should request a meeting with park staff if your proposed activity is unusual or complex. Early consultation with park staff will help them process the submitted application in a timely manner.

Permit cost recovery fees, location fees, liability insurance, and performance bond requirements will be imposed, consistent with applicable statutory authorities and regulations. All costs incurred by the park in reviewing, administering, managing, and monitoring a permit, are the responsibility of the permittee.

 
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NPS


Reservations

Organized groups such as schools, scouts, churches, etc. should call ahead and make a reservation. E-mail or call (843) 881-5516 for more information.

Last updated: February 10, 2021

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

1214 Middle Street
Sullivan's Island, SC 29482

Phone:

(843) 881-5516

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