Events Planning

Events are meant to be memorable, and proper planning is vital to ensuring a positive experience for participants while also greatly enhancing safety for participants and event staff. It only takes a matter of seconds for an emergency to arise, and an effective response depends on planning in advance.

While event safety ultimately is the responsibility of the event organizer, The EHS&EM team is here to help! There are many resources available to support event planning efforts, and our team is often onsite to help coordinate event safety operations.


If you plan to use tents, you must receive a university tent permit for each tent regardless of the size or type. In some instances, a state permit may be required. To start the process, complete the university tent permit request (see reverse). All requests must be received no less than 45 days prior to the start of the event. 

Please fill out a Tent Permit Request Form for your event.


Weather conditions must be considered whether an event is held indoors or outdoors. EHS&EM can help provide weather support (see request form on reserve). If an event is held outdoors, a lightning action plan must be included with the weather safety plan. Remember that all outdoor event activities must stop once lightning is detected within 8 miles of the event location. Any changes to the minimum distance must be approved in writing by EHS&EM.

Please fill out an Event Weather Monitoring Support Request Form to request assitance. You can also monitor weather prior and during your event by visiting App State's Campus Weather Station Page.

Emergency Personnel

Depending on the type, size, and location of the event, the presence of emergency personnel may be required. This includes law enforcement, emergency medical services, fire personnel, and emergency management (EHS&EM). Large events of 1,000 or more will typically require at least some level of emergency personnel onsite, though smaller events may as well.

Please contact EHS&EM to discuss potential needs.

Mountaineer Medics

Mountaineer Medics is App State’s career development and emergency medical service (EMS) program and part of the services provided to the university community by EHS&EM. Mountaineer Medics is an approved agency under the Watauga County EMS System (as approved by the county and the North Carolina Office of Emergency Medical Services).

Requests for Mountaineer Medics:

  • Must be requested at least 10 days in advance
  • May be required for certain events due to event size or planned activities
  • Minimum of 2 medics per event regardless of event size, $40 per hour per medic with 2 hour minimum
  • Twenty-five dollar one-time event set-up fee, per medic

Services Include:

  • Fully credentialed EMS personnel capable of providing basic life support (BLS)
  • Direct connection with the full 911 system for Watauga County
  • All BLS equipment and medications

Please fill out an EMS Coverage Request Form to request Mountaineer Medics at your event. Additional charges may be required based on event type and activity.

Emergency Processes

At a minimum, each event should have a basic emergency plan that outlines key contacts, a communication plan, how emergency services will be activated, shelter-in-place locations, and evacuation procedures and locations. Additional hazard specific information may be required depending on the type of event and location. EHS&EM can assist with reviewing plans, or determining if an approved plan is already in place.


Event sites must consider how many patrons can be safely accommodated within the event site. Any enclosed area, to include outdoors areas with any form of barriers around the edges, must abide by approved occupancy numbers. Occupancy must be either pre-determined by code officials for the event site, or approved through EHS&EM. Remember that occupancy includes patrons and event staff.

Event Staff

It is imperative that adequate event staff are on-site during each event. For events with greater than 1,000 people, trained crowd managers are required (1 per every 250 persons as a minimum). EHS&EM can assist with training, and may provide specialized training depending on the event. Note: App State Police or other emergency services personnel do not count as crowd managers, but their presence may still be required.