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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » By-laws and police say no license needed, does this mean I'm trouble free now? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

James Harrison
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Ontario, Canada
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I did some research in my hometown (just outside of Toronto).

I checked with the City, and the by-laws and the local police, and they all said there isn't any license or permit required to perform at a park in my area.


Does this mean I'm trouble free, or is there anything I should worry about?


I don't want to set up a weekend to find out I missed something I should of looked for.
BroDavid
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America’s North Coast, Ohio
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Does anyone else there perform? If so, ask them. Even if they aren't magicians, if they are performers of any type, you should be able to get some information.

But if you cant find anyone, then it usually just comes down to good common sense.

Are you being disruptive to the nature of the area? Or are you going to be blocking any traffic ways?

In other words, if folks go there to read, and feed pigeons, will your act somehow interfere with that? Also, will you be sitting on on a sidewalk that requires people to walk on the grass to get around you?

And actually, although the law is important, it is still pretty much up to the local law enforcement officer to make a judgement on whether or not you are being a nuisance.

If there is a local officer assigned to the beat, and can stike up a friendship with them, you could probably save yourself a bit of concern, and maybe get an advocate, who might even help you with hecklers. Smile

But back to the first thing I said. Ask someone who is doing it.

BroDavid
If you stand for nothing, you will fall for anything.
Jim Wilder
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Birmingham, AL
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Here in the States, at least where I am from, we have to have a license, unless performing for a fair or other private event. However, I do not know of any event where the license was asked for here locally.

What about you Danny? Have you ever had a problem in this area?
Danny Hustle
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Many GREAT pitches in this area require no permit. Others like Harvard Square do require a permit and a $40 fee. Places like Fanny Hall use an audition process and only those who pass can perform.

Even if no permit is required if the police ask you to "Move along." you should do the smart thing and go home early. The law of the streets say, Badge and gun wins without exception. If a police officer wants an excuse to lock you up it doesn't take much. They have the law on their side off the bat.

You may win the war, but the battle on the street you will lose. If you are serious about it use the court system and the local legislature.

Only a fool messes with the men in blue. Smile

Best,

Dan-
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cfrye
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Portland, Oregon, USA
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In Portland, Oregon, you don't need a permit to work on a street corner, but there are some restrictions:

o You can't be heard more than 50' from where you're standing.
o You must move every hour.
o You can't ask for tips (violates the "aggressive panhandling" restriction).
JoeJoe
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There are countless issues that could come up ... an easy one for example, will you be doing ballon animals? If so, you may need a business licence and pay sales tax ... as someone else pointed out, many places have a noise ordance. Here in Myrtle Beach, there is a law that prohibits people from placing anything on the sidewalk - I doubt any old lady setting a bag down to get change outta her purse would ever get arrested, but if the cops wanted to get rid of you, they could easily use that law if you have a table or something setup.

Here are some links with valuable info to read up on:

http://www.balloonhq.com/faq/twister_busking.html

http://communityartsadvocates.org/



After reading the info at those links, you will know that it is your legal right to perform (at least in the US) ... cities can place reasonable restrictions on time and place of performance, but they can not prohibit "expressive speech." If they do not have a permit system in place, then you don't need one. But if an officer asks you to find a new spot, then by all means move.
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James Harrison
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Thanks for the tips guys. This helps a lot.
Bill Palmer
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Quote:
On 2004-06-07 15:59, jwilder wrote:
Here in the States, at least where I am from, we have to have a license, unless performing for a fair or other private event. However, I do not know of any event where the license was asked for here locally.




That is strictly a local option. It all depends on where you are. There are no licenses needed to perform in Houston, as far as I know, but there was talk about it a few years ago. It's so hot here that nobody really does much street performing in the park or near the downtown areas, anyway.
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ed rhodes
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I keep meaning to go to City Hall here in Providence and find out if licenses are needed. Being Rhode Island, I'm half afraid they'll say licenses aren't even possible! (I wonder what the WaterFire people do?)
"There's no time to lose," I heard her say.
"Catch your dreams before they slip away."
"Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you could lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?"
JoeJoe
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Mandrake ... do a google search and find your city's homepage and see if they list the city laws online. Many cities do this, and you may be able to find information yourself. The City Of Myrle Beach has all city laws online (off-topic: did you know it's a $50 fine to spit on the sidewalk here?).

Even if you don't find comprehensive information, the more you know when you go in there the better off you will be.
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ed rhodes
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Quote:
On 2004-06-11 23:36, JoeJoe wrote:
Mandrake ... do a google search and find your city's homepage and see if they list the city laws online. Many cities do this, and you may be able to find information yourself. The City Of Myrle Beach has all city laws online (off-topic: did you know it's a $50 fine to spit on the sidewalk here?).

Even if you don't find comprehensive information, the more you know when you go in there the better off you will be.



Thanks. I tried that once with NYC just out of curiousity and couldn't find anything, but I'll give it a try.

Well, found RIonline. No references in the code on either street performers or street entertainers. I don't think they'd thought of it.
"There's no time to lose," I heard her say.
"Catch your dreams before they slip away."
"Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you could lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?"
R2
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You don't need a license to perform in El Paso on the streets or public areas. You must stay free of the traffic or sidewalks. You do need a permit if you use a public address sytem.

The local P.D. has stopped to watch a few times and even requested something they'd seen on the telly.
~r2
Zack
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Danny,

I must respectfully disagree with you. It is important that we stand our ground against the thugs-with-badges. Busking is legal in the U.S. this has been shown over and over again in the courts, but the cops use the "badge and gun trumps goldstein vs. Nantucket logic" to intimidate people off the streets. Stand your ground, take the ticket, go to court. Amuse yourself with the exasperated look on the DA's face as he throws out ANOTHER street performing ticket. Don't back down! Stand up to the Vic Mackeys of the world.
Devoted
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Toronto, Canada
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Toronto and the GTA are really relaxed about it. The only places that will give you any hassle ( and I have had some issues) TTC stations (bus terminals for those outside of T.O.) and the malls. But if your sly just do some fast impressive tricks on security and you will have no problems. And if you are really bold call the head offices of SkyDome and the ACC and ask the for informal permission to busk outside the buildings. They will under a little sweet talking give you a permit to preform on their land. I told them I would incorperate their sports teams into my act and the said sure. Try it.
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James Harrison
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Ontario, Canada
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Hey Devoted,


Any chance that you still perform on the street?


I would like to watch a local guy in action.
Devoted
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Toronto, Canada
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My partner and I are going to try and make it down to Kensington market on a couple sundays. I would love to have a couple other magicians there to check it out. I am trying to get better Critiques are always nice.

Drop me a line Davidrnolan@hotmail.com
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