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Special Events

Special Event Business License

Anyone participating in commercial activity during a Special Event is required to apply for and obtain a special event license.  A special event constitutes a separate business activity outside of a regular course of business and is usually of an entertainment, educational or lifestyle enrichment purpose.  All business activity in the city must have a location and each location must have a separate license. Established businesses in the City of Norfolk cannot use their existing license for participation in a special event. 

The cost of a special event business license is $50 and the license is valid for a calendar year.  Additionally, it is valid for participation in other special events throughout the City of Norfolk without the need to pay for another license.  The vendor must, however, be on the approved vendor list provided by the event sponsor/organizer for all events in which they have paid to participate.

Additional Information

  • If a business charges a fee for entertainment and/or amusement, that business is required to collect and remit a 10% admissions tax due to the City of Norfolk.  This tax is 10% of the price of admission and is a tax on the customer, not the business. 
  • If a business sells prepared foods, they are responsible for collecting the City of Norfolk meal tax, which is 6.5%.  This tax is also on the customer and not the business.
  • All admission taxes and meal taxes are due on the 20th of the month after the event.
  • Forms are mailed after the event for the reporting and remitting of admission and/or meal tax.