Marine Gatherings

A marine gathering is an intentional congregation of more than 100 vessels in a specific area of water that, by the event’s nature, circumstances, or location, creates extra or unusual hazards to life or property.

In 2012, the General Assembly passed legislation establishing a marine gathering permit to provide the Natural Resources Police, local law enforcement, and first responders adequate notice of large gatherings on State waters. The permit process helps law enforcement units and emergency services prepare appropriate safety and security measures for these large events. It also compels event sponsors and organizers to take a proactive roll in planning and managing for safety and security during their private parties on the water.

An organizer or planner of an event on state waters must apply for a permit if the event will likely:

(1) involve or attract 100 vessels or more;
(2) last three (3) hours or more; and
(3) create an extra or unusual hazard based upon consideration of the criteria set out in the answers above.

If a marine gathering organizer fails to obtain or comply with the permit, the Natural Resources Police may disband the gathering if necessary to protect public safety and maintain safe navigation.


Incomplete, inaccurate or applications submitted without the fee required by COMAR will be automatically denied. Each application requires a fee.

The application cost is $100 and is non-refundable. Please make checks payable to The Maryland Department of Natural Resources – NRP. Completed applications must be submitted with payment 45 days prior to the event. Send applications to:

Natural Resources Police
ATTN: Marine Gatherings Coordinator
Maryland Department of Natural Resources
580 Taylor Avenue, Bldg. E-3
Annapolis, Maryland, 21401