Permits & Reservations

7 soldiers with right arms raised taking an otath stand in front of a crowd of 14 people.
Re-enlistment in front of the visitor center


Special Use Permit Information

A permit is required to conduct activities including, but not limited to:

  • Organized recreational events (i.e.; races, fun runs, 5k’s)
  • Weddings - Regulations and Conditions - Weddings are only at City Point
  • Military sponsored events - including rucksack marches and re-enlistment ceremonies
  • Athletic Events - including 5K and 10K races, and walkathon
  • Ceremonies
  • Public assemblies/meetings/gatherings/demonstrations/parades/etc. by groups of more than 25 people
  • Sale or distribution of printed material (not solely advertising)

Access for other park visitors must not be impeded. The Special Use Permit is authorization for your private event to take place on parklands and does not grant exclusive use of an area. The area identified in the permit will remain open to the public during the event. It is recommended that you schedule your event early or late in the day if you wish to increase the privacy of your event. Activities must be held at the site(s) specified on the map at the bottom of this page.
The hatched areas shown on the map indicate that they have been previously archaeologically surveyed and have been determined by previous Park archeologists to be cleared of artifacts as deep as 6".
This blanket compliance will be effective for special events at Grant’s Headquarters and Poplar Grove for 1 year from the date of issuance, at which time it will be reviewed prior to re-issuance.


  • Ceremonies will be limited to no more than 250 participants
  • Participant vehicles must leave room for other park visitors. No parking in the grass will be permitted, and all parking will be within designated parking spaces in any lot.
  • Park staff will generally not be available to offer special assistance for traffic, parking, or other logistical needs during the event.
  • Grass is maintained by the Park, however, Park staff are not responsible for mowing in advance of an event.
  • Permittee must provide all necessary equipment for their ceremony. The NPS will not furnish any equipment. Equipment may include folding chairs to accommodate guests, standalone flags, PA system (battery powered only), podium, small folding table to hold awards.
  • Tents that require stakes to secure will not go any deeper than 6 inches into the ground. Tents can be held in place by weights or sandbags. No concrete blocks are allowed.
  • Brush tents are not allowed.
  • Chairs should have plastic caps on the ends.
  • Campfires are allowed on raised metal fire pits.
  • All firing demonstrations and handling of historic weapons will be conducted in accordance with NPS black power regulation. All firing demonstrations and handling of historic weapons is contingent on NPS having appropriate staff to ensure compliance.
  • Prior to the event, park staff will ensure the grounds are suitable for chairs. If the grounds are wet, then the park may prohibit the use of chairs or require that chairs may only be placed on concrete.
  • The NPS will not provide an indoor location to hold the ceremony in the event of inclement weather.
  • Small pin flag signage may be inserted into the ground. These signs may include those often used by real estate signs that have pin flag type legs, less than 1/8th inch in diameter. Signs should not extend deeper than 6" in depth.
  • No ground disturbing activities will be permitted under this permit.
  • All signs, flagging, pin flags, trash, and equipment must be taken with the permittee.
  • Additional conditions can be included in the permit to help manage the permit.

How do I apply for a permit?
Permit applications are available below. You should submit a completed application along with the application fee to Petersburg National Battlefield. Applications need to be submitted at least 30 days prior to the event.

Submit by mail or in person to:
Petersburg National Battlefield
Attn: Permit Office
1539 Hickory Hill Road
Petersburg, VA 23803

What fees will I have to pay?
The National Park Service will collect a cost recovery charge and a location fee for still photography permits. Cost recovery includes an application fee and any additional charges to cover the costs incurred by the National Park Service in processing your request and monitoring your permit. The application fee must be submitted with your application.

In addition, the National Park Service has been directed by Congress to collect a fee to provide a fair return to the United States for the use of park lands. Petersburg National Battlefield uses the following fee schedule:

  • General events permit - $50.00
  • Still photography permit - $50.00

Are there other permit requirements?
You may be required to obtain liability insurance naming the United States as additionally insured in an amount commensurate with the risk posed to park resources by your proposed activity. You may also be asked to post a bond to ensure the payment of all charges and fees and the restoration of the area if necessary.

For more detailed information, see the park Superintendent’s Compendium or 36 CFR Sections 2.50, 2.51, or 2.52 . You can also contact the park Special Use Permit Office at (804) 732-3531 x111 or email. Current National Park Service policy states that “A permittee may not collect admission, parking, or any other monies associated with a special event on park property.” All permittee monetary transactions must take place outside the park.”



Effective October 28, 2022, the National Park Service rescinded interim guidance that was in place during litigation regarding commercial filming and has returned to longstanding laws and regulations governing commercial filming in parks.

"Commercial filming" means the film, electronic, magnetic, digital, or other recording of a moving image by a person, business, or other entity for a market audience with the intent of generating income. Examples include, but are not limited to, feature film, videography, and documentaries. Commercial filming may include the advertisement of a product or service, or the use of actors, models, sets, or props. Under federal law, all commercial filming that occurs within a unit of the National Park System requires a permit.

Those interested in commercial filming activities on land managed by Petersburg National Battlefield 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.
Examples of requests that may require a permit include, but are not limited to: entering a sensitive resource area, filming in areas that require tickets to enter, or filming in visitor centers, campgrounds, or other visitor areas. The decision to require a permit rests with the park superintendent based on potential impacts to park resources or the visitor experience.

Contact the park directly if unsure whether or not a filming activity is considered low-impact or may require a permit.

Are filmers still required to pay fees to film in parks?
Effective October 28, 2022, the National Park Service rescinded interim guidance that was in place during litigation regarding commercial filming and has returned to longstanding laws and regulations governing commercial filming in parks.The National Park Service may collect application or location fees, and cost recovery for filming activities.

Still Photography

When is a permit needed?
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.

Location Fee Schedule 2023

Motion Pictures/Videos
1 – 2 people, camera and tripod only $0 per day
1 - 10 people $150 per day
11 - 30 people $250 per day
31 - 49 people $500 per day
Over 50 people $750 per day

Still Photography/Audio Recording
1 - 10 people $50 per day
11 - 30 people $150 per day
Over 30 people $250 per day


Special Use Area Maps

Map of City Point with 5 polygons with dots - parking lot and south of it; North of plantation house; between plantation house and Grants cabin; lawn south of cabin; and far right near the river. Small blue polygon east side of plantation house.
City Point Special Use Areas


Map of cemetery, yellow (Special Use) area next to a building and blue (1st Amendment Area) in center of  parking lot
Poplar Grove National Cemetery Special Use Area


Last updated: May 15, 2024

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Contact Info

Mailing Address:

Petersburg National Battlefield Administration Office
1539 Hickory Hill Road

Petersburg, VA 23803


804 732-3531 x200
If you cannot reach us by phone - please e-mail questions to the address listed.

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