A. Consistent with 36 CFR 7.96(G), applications for pedestrian and cycling special events will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis, up to one year in advance of the proposed race date, which includes pre-event set up and post-event take down.
Races requiring road closures will not be conducted on sites/areas under the administration of the George Washington Memorial Parkway from Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day Weekend.
B. Pedestrian and cycling special events on the George Washington Memorial, Clara Barton, and Spout Run Parkway – maximum of three per year (except the Marine Corps Marathon and the Parkway Classic)
1. Will be allowed between Labor Day weekend and Memorial Day Weekend;
2. Must begin no later than 8:00 a.m.
3. Parkways must be cleared for reopening by 9:30 a.m.;
4. Maximum participation will not exceed 5,000;
5. Events requiring road closures will not be permitted on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day;
C. Pedestrian and cycling special events at Arlington Ridge Park (United States Marine Corps War Memorial and the Netherlands Carillon) with the exception of the Marine Corps Marathon
1. Will be allowed between Labor Day weekend and Memorial Day weekend;
2. Must begin no later than 8:00 a.m.;
3. Must be cleared by 9:30 a.m.;
4. No activities are permitted on the parade field, reviewing platform and plaza levels;
5. No events are permitted the second Tuesdays of June, July and August and Veteran’s Day;
6. No events are permitted Memorial Day, Saturdays of June, July and August, Labor Day, and Independence Day,
7. Races requiring road closures will not be permitted on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day;
D. Pedestrian and cycling events along Arlington Memorial Bridge and
1. Only permitted on the weekends between Labor Day weekend and Memorial Day weekend;
2. Must begin no later than 8:00 a.m.;
3. Must be cleared by 9:30 a.m.;
4. Events requiring road closures will not be permitted on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day;
E. Pedestrian and cycling special events on the Mount Vernon Trail (MVT) – maximum of two per month
1. Will be allowed November 1 through the third weekend in April with a maximum number of 300 participants;
2. Between the fourth week in April – October 31 with a maximum number of 100 participants;
3. Must begin no later than 8:00 a.m.;
4. Must be cleared by 9:30 a.m.;
5. For event starting on park property, must maintain a dispersal start with a maximum of 15 participants at a time entering the MVT in 4-minute intervals;
6. Participants shall maintain adequate dispersal while entering and traveling along the MVT in order to share the trail with the general public;
7. Must maintain a maximum of 15 single file participants per group at a time on the MVT;
8. Events requiring road closures will not be permitted on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day and New Year’s Day;
F. Pedestrian and cycling special events on the Fort Hunt – Fort Hunt Loop Road
1. Year-round events are permitted at Fort Hunt Park. If the event occurs during the Fort Hunt Park reserved picnic season, permittee must also obtain a picnic permit for one of the reserved areas. Visit the website http://www.recreation.gov/ for more information and to make a reservation.
2. Events must begin no later than 8:00 a.m.;
3. All roads musts be cleared no later than 9:30 a.m.;
4. Maximum participation will not exceed the carrying capacity of the reserved area(s);
5. Must maintain a dispersal start with a maximum of 25 participants at a time entering the Fort Hunt Loop Road in 4-minute intervals;
6. Participants shall maintain adequate dispersal while traveling along the inner land of Fort Hunt Loop Road in order to share the inner lane with the general public;
7. Participants must run single file clockwise in the inner lane of Fort Hunt Loop Road;
G. Pedestrian and cycling special events at Great Falls Park, Virginia
1. Pedestrian events will be allowed between September – March
H. Pedestrian and cycling special will be allowed under the following conditions:
1. Permittee must provide for and require all participants and support staff to be clearly identified. Participants must be clearly identified through clothing items or bibs. Support staff must be clearly identified through t-shirts naming the event. Marshalls must wear reflective vests and be stationed at every intersection.
• Participants may run only in the right lane, except when passing. When passing in the left lane, runners must yield to any oncoming traffic.
• Participants are prohibited from impeding or preventing the general public from using any part of the Mount Vernon Trail.
• When crossing roads, participants must stay within the boundaries of the painted crosswalks.
I. Pursuant to 36 C.F.R. § 4.30(a) the use of a bicycle is prohibited except on park roads, in parking areas and on routes designated for bicycle; provided, however, the Superintendent may close any park road or parking area to bicycle use pursuant to the criteria and procedures of § 1.5 and 1.7 of this chapter. Routes may only be designated for bicycle use based on a written determination that such use is consistent with the protection of the park area’s natural, scenic and aesthetic values, safety consideration and management objectives and will not disturb wildlife or park resources. Any bike race special event that is allowed wither separately or as part of a biathlon/triathlon only, may occur under the following conditions:
1. Permittees must provide for and require all participants to exercise all normal and reasonable safety precautions including observance of all applicable bike course safety notices and the wearing of personal protection equipment such as helmets.
2. Permittee must provide and adequately maintain suitable protective safety devices such as barricades, heavy duty plastic surfaces and fences for the safety of staff, volunteers and participants. Placement of such devices requires the prior written approval of the National Park Service.
3. For filming on the race/bike course, only one motor vehicle will be allowed and must be located behind a United States Park Police cruiser leading the runners/Bikers and must continue moving with the cruiser throughout the race/bike route.
4. The “Transition Area”, must be finished with adequate lighting, entrances and egress points. The fencing design must provide for the safety of participants entering and exiting the transition area as well as for spectators viewing the event for this location.
5. For park roadways to be used for bicycle events, the roadway will be closed to vehicle traffic for the duration.
PUBLIC LAW 112-141-JULY 6, 2012 126 STAT.489 Section 203 states that in order for bicycle events to be allowed on the federally owned roadways with a speed of 30 miles per hour or greater, and an adjacent paved bicycle path within 100 yards of the roadway, the bicycle level of service (LOS) of that roadway must be rated B or higher.
LOS is a qualitative measure describing operational conditions of a transportation facility. LOS measures the quality of traffic service, and may be determined for intersections, roadway segments, or arterial corridors on the basis of delay, congested speed, volume to capacity (v/c) ratio, or vehicle density by functional class. Bicycle LOS ratings factor in the bicyclist’s operating space alongside the vehicular traffic patterns. The LOS ratings range from ‘A’ to ‘F’, with ‘A’ indicating the best operating conditions and ‘F’ indicating the worst, or a failing, operating condition.
Because the LOS is determined by traffic patterns, any roadway that is closed to all vehicle traffic would have an LOS rating of A. Therefore, a road closure of GWMP would achieve a LOS rating of A and would be permitted for bicycle events, provided they adhere to all other guidelines as outlined in the Superintendent’s Compendium.
J. No fees (including electronic transactions) or charges may be collected on park land and the special event permittee may not engage in or solicit any business on park land. All participants must be pre-registered.
K. The permittee/sponsor for special event races requiring road closures must procure public and employee liability insurance from a responsible United States based company with a minimum limitation of $1 million per person for any one claim and an aggregate limitation of $3 million for any number of claims arising from any one incident. The United States of America shall be included as an additional named insured on all such policies and a copy of the insurance rider must be provided to the National Park Service.
L. Permittee will be required to reimburse any costs incurred by the National Park Service and the United States Park Police in support of these activities.
M. The Permittee will be held liable for any damage to park property coincident to this permit. The Permittee is responsible for all reimbursement cost, including work performed by park staff, to correct or repair damages to park property (i.e. ruts, damages to drains, curbing and/or road surfaces, injuries to vegetation and turf, etc.) incurred as a result of the activity permitted.
N. The National Park Service will not be held responsible for any specific roadway maintenance requirements in support of footrace events, above and beyond routine maintenance.
O. Marking of racecourse must be by flour, real estate type signs, or similar material only, but must first be approved in writing by the National Park Service and is to be removed immediately after the event.
P. Unbudgeted expenditures incurred by the National Park Service and/or United States Park Police include personnel services, maintenance supplies and materials as well as maintenance clean-up following event.
The Permittee will take special care to prevent damage to park resources. The Permittee will be held liable for any damages to park property coincident to the permit. In addition, the Permittee is responsible for the immediate cleanup of any debris deposited on park lands and roads.
Permittee is responsible for reimbursing the National Park Service and United States Park Police for all personnel costs associated with this activity.
Lesser restrictive measures will not suffice in order to effectively balance and avoid conflicts between race and organized run activities with other visitor use and services activities equitably allocated park areas and facilities, access to and egress from park concessionaires, and concession operations. The public use limitation enhances park resources and values and is not of a nature, magnitude and duration that will result in a significant alteration in the public use pattern. Further, it will not adversely affect the park’s natural, aesthetic or cultural values and is not of a highly controversial nature, given that these guidelines have been developed for past races in Rock Creek Park. Accordingly, pursuant to 36 C.F.R. §1.5(b) publication as rulemaking in the Federal Register is unnecessary and unwarranted. This is consistent with hundreds of past park judicial adjudications. Mahoney v. Norton No.02-1715 (D.D.C. August 29, 2002), plaintiffs’ emergency motion for injunction pending appeal denied Mahoney v. Norton, No.02- 5275 (D.C. Cir. September 9, 2002) (per curiam); Spiegel v. Babbitt, 855 F.Supp. 402 (D.D.C. 1994), aff’d and vacated in part 1995 US App. LEXIS 15200 (D.C. Cir. May 31, 1995); Picciotto v. United States, No. 99-2113 (D.D.C. August 6, 1999); Picciotto v. United States, No. 94-1935 (D.D.C. September 9, 1994); Picciotto v. Luian No. 90-1261 (D.D.C. May 30, 1990); Picciotto v. Hodel, No. 87-3290 (D.D.C. January 26, 1988).
Last updated: January 24, 2023