First Amendment Activities

Demonstration and distribution of printed matter within Mount Rushmore National Memorial (36 C.F.R. § 2.51 and 36 C.F.R 2.52)

The term “demonstrations” includes demonstrations, picketing, speechmaking, marching, holding vigils or religious services, and all other like forms of conduct that involve the communication or expression of views or grievances, engaged in by one or more persons, the conduct of which is reasonably likely to attract a crowd of onlookers.

The term “printed matter” means message-bearing textual printed material such as books, pamphlets, magazines, and leaflets, provided that it is not solely commercial advertising. The term “other message-bearing items” means a message-bearing item that is not “printed matter” and is not solely commercial advertising. Other message-bearing items include, but are not limited to: Readable electronic media such as CDs, DVDs, and flash drives; clothing and accessories such as hats and key chains; buttons; pins; and bumper stickers.

Mount Rushmore National Memorial offers six (6) designated locations where individuals or groups may exercise their First Amendment (FA) rights through a demonstration or by distributing printed material. Each location is available for groups, 25 or less without a permit. Multiple groups may use the designated areas at the same time, unless the area cannot accommodate multiple group occupancy. If this occurs the group will be directed to another available, designated area within the park.

A no cost permit is required for groups over 25 people or other situations described below. Applications must be submitted no more than one year in advance of the proposed activity; applications will be responded to within ten days of receipt of a fully, complete application. Permits may be issued for 14 consecutive days; new applications must be submitted for extension requests; extensions will be issued in 14 day increments, but may be denied if other groups are already permitted for the same time and location, if the area can not accommodate multiple occupancy.

 

Who Needs a Permit?

36 C.F.R. 2.51 and 2.52 allow groups of 25 people or less to use a designated area without a permit. A permit is required for any group that:

  • wants to hold a demonstration or distribute and/or sell printed matter outside a designated First Amendment area

  • wants to use equipment. (i.e. stages, platforms, or structures etc.)

  • is more than 25 people.

 

How to Apply

Submit a Special Use Permit Application to:

Mount Rushmore National Memorial
Special Use and Filming Permit Coordinator
13000 Highway 244
Building 31, Suite 1
Keystone, SD 57751

 
Map of facilities and walkways of Mount Rushmore National Memorial with First Amendment areas marked in red.
Map showing locations of the First Amendment areas.

Designated First Amendment Locations

The following locations are predetermined by the National Park Service for First Amendment activities provided the location can accommodate the requested group size.

All such permitted activity must fully comply with 36 C.F.R. § 2.51 and 36 C.F.R. 2.52. No other areas, besides the five listed below, are designated for such activity:

Designated First Amendment Areas are shown in detail on map to the right.

Lincoln 1: The scalloped area of the walkway closest to the Information Center, on the east side (or Lincoln side) of the walkway only. This area is designated with signage and the boundary is designated with engraved stars in the concrete.

Lincoln 2: The scalloped area of the walkway furthest from the Information Center, on the east side (or Lincoln side) of the walkway only. This area is designated with signage and the boundary is designated with engraved stars in the concrete.

Washington 1: The scalloped area of the walkway closest to the Main Restroom, on the west side (or Washington side) of the walkway only. This area is designated with signage and the boundary is designated with engraved stars in the concrete.

Washington 2: The scalloped area of the walkway furthest from the Main Restroom, on the west side (or Washington side) of the walkway only. This area is designated with signage and the boundary is designated with engraved stars in the concrete.

Amphitheater: The amphitheater stage and seating area.

Borglum View Terrace: The Borglum View Terrace

 

Photo Gallery of First Amendment Areas

 

Last updated: September 27, 2021

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

13000 Highway 244
Building 31, Suite 1

Keystone, SD 57751

Phone:

(605) 574-2523
Park information. Phones are answered from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Contact Us