Event Rules:

I. General:

1. Event registration is on an individual basis, not by unit.

2. Note: Absolutely No Walk-Ons without prior approval.

3. All participants must register, pay the registration fee, and sign any and all required waivers.

4. All participants must abide by the clothing and authenticity guidelines established for their impression (Federal, Confederate or citizenry).

5. ALL military reenactors must comply with weapons safety inspections. No exceptions. No civilians may bring firearms unless by specific advance arrangement with the event committee. NO powder or percussion caps are to be stored in civilian areas.

5. All participants must wear appropriate period clothing from 6:00 am Saturday morning until the close of the event Sunday afternoon. Period clothing is required Friday evening after you have set up and "entered" the event in all areas visible to other reenactors.

6. The event hosts and organizing committee reserve the right to ask that anachronistic or inappropriate items be removed, adjusted or replaced. (See list of forbidden items and behaviors, below). We don't want to embarrass anyone, so please read and understand the regulations before the event.

7. All military participants are encouraged to develop first-person impressions appropriate to the event. While the McDowell event is not a mandatory immersion experience for military participants, nonethless many soldier reenactors will choose to be in character for all or a significant part of the event and most others will wish to maintain a period ambiance. Therefore, please refrain from discussing obviously modern topics like cars, movies, the Internet, "the hobby", etc., within earshot of others. Military reenactors should be prepared to interact with civilian reenactors portraying townsfolk. Further impression information will be provided to facilitate this activity.

8. Civilian participation is limited and by invitation.

9. Living history and public education are emphasized at this event. First person portrayals should be maintained (within reason) during the spectator hours and during any other designated time specified by the hosts. No one is expected to be perfect, but honest attempts are required. Be prepared to interact with other reenactors portraying townsfolk and soldiers and refrain from anachronistic conversation within earshot of others.

10. Mounted impressions (officers, cavalry, couriers, etc) and wagoneers are limited in number and must be coordinated with the appropriate military command structure (Federal or Confederate). Civilian wagoneers and/or mounted civilians must apply in advance to the civilian coordinators for the approval of the event coordinators. No pets or livestock are permitted unless cleared in advance through the coordinators / command structure appropriate to your impression.

11 . Direction of all military scenarios, activity schedules and enforcement of military authenticity standards are the responsibility of the event military coordinators who reserve the right of authoritative oversight in these matters.

12. Direction of all civilian scenarios, activity schedules and authenticity standards are the responsibility of the event civilian coordinators who reserve the right of authoritative oversight in these matters.

13. This event is made possible through the permission of a number of private and non-profit landowners and the active and enthusiastic cooperation of the local community. It is a privilege to be able to reenact in McDowell and all participants are asked to remember this at all times.

II. Restrictions:

ALL Participants MUST read and understand the following prohibitions in regard to clothing, equipment, camps and conduct at this event BEFORE you register!!

1. NO digging of unauthorized trenches, erecting of ad-hoc breastworks, et cetera, without specific permission;

2. NO cutting and/or felling of trees without advance warning and approval;

3. NO placement of ANY objects (i.e. rocks, trees, boards, et cetera) in and/or across the Bullpasture River;

4. NO civilians sleeping in military camps or functioning as "tent sitters". No civilians are to be in military camps without passes, unless there is a scenario-related reason for being there without a pass and they are prepared to suffer the consequences.

5. NO campfires anywhere except designated locations.

6. NO women detectable as portraying men.

7. NO women portraying military "laundresses" or cooks travelling with the army, or undocumented vivandiere impressions or prostitute impressions;

8. NO vehicles in camp...ever;

9. Military camps are expected to look like actual military camps in the1862 Valley Campaign.

This means:

NO coolers in camps;
NO camp furniture on company streets of military camps;
NO non-period cookware, including speckleware;
NO plastic bags or plastic flooring;
NO cots or sleeping bags in military camps;
NO candle lanterns on company streets;
NO metal campfire sets in military camps;
NO hay bales used as furniture in camps;
NO two piece camp chairs in camps or other anachronistic furnishings
NO non-period snack foods;
NO modern food packaging including beverage cans;

10. Civilian accommodation arrangements are still being finalized. Separate guidelines will be published in the civilian information section of the site once arrangements have been made.

11. Military uniforms must conform with the Federal or Confederate impression guidelines. No havelocks, no gaiters, no Indian impressions, no kilts.

12. Mounted impressions must conform with the appropriate military or civilian guidelines. NO modern saddles or tack, no 1904 or Indian Wars McClellans.

13. No "dismounted cavalry" impressions unless specifically approved by the relevant military command structure in advance.

13. NO visible modern underwear or other visible modern / anachronistic articles of clothing or personal accoutrements / effects. NO obviously modern hairstyles on men (mowhawks, dreadlocks, etc), NO modern hairstyles on women whatsoever, or visible makeup or nail polish.

14. NO smoking cigarettes within sight of spectators or other participants;

15. NO loud, rowdy or inappropriate behavior, especially between taps and reveille;

16. NO obvious intoxication.

17. NO illegal substances or other illegal behavior.

For a printable pdf of the Event Rules, click here!