Burning Man

Burning Man

Burning Man is an annual event held in the Black Rock Desert, in Northern Nevada. The event starts on the Monday before, and ends on the day of, the American Labor Day holiday. It takes its name from the ritual burning of a large wooden effigy on Saturday evening.

The event is described by many participants as an experiment in community, radical self-expression, and radical self-reliance. Organizers have noted, "Trying to explain what Burning Man is to someone who has never been to the event is a bit like trying to explain what a particular color looks like to someone who is blind." [Burningman.com [http://www.burningman.com/whatisburningman/ What is Burning Man?] ] .

The event is organized by Black Rock City, LLC. In 2008, 49,599 people participated in The Burning Man Project.Fact|date=September 2008


1986 to 1989

The annual event now known as Burning Man began as a bonfire ritual on the summer solstice in 1986 when Larry Harvey, Jerry James, and a few friends met on Baker Beach in San Francisco and burned an 8-foot (2.4-meter) wooden man as well as a smaller wooden dog. Harvey has described his inspiration for burning these effigy figures as a spontaneous act of radical self-expression.

The event did have earlier roots, though. Sculptor Mary Grauberger, a friend of Harvey's girlfriend Janet Lohr, held solstice bonfire gatherings on Baker Beach for several years prior to 1986, some of which Harvey attended. When Grauberger stopped organizing it, Harvey "picked up the torch and ran with it", so to speak. He and Jerry James built an 8-foot (2.4-meter) wooden effigy for 1986, which was much smaller and more crudely made than the neon figure featured in the current ritual. In 1987, the effigy grew to almost 15 feet (4.6 meters) tall, and by 1988 it had grown to around 40 feet (12 meters).

Harvey swears that he did not see the movie "The Wicker Man" until many years later, so it played no part in his inspiration. Accordingly, rather than allow the name "Wicker Man" to become the name of the ritual, he started using the name "Burning Man". [(cite book | last = Doherty | first = Brian
title = This Is Burning Man | publisher = Benbella Books | year = 2006 | pages = p. 33 | month = July
isbn = 978-1-932100-86-0

1990 to 1996

In 1990, a separate event was planned by Kevin Evans and John Law on the otherworldly, remote and largely unknown playa known as Black Rock Desert. Fact|date=October 2007 Evans conceived it as a dadaist event with temporary sculpture to be burned and situationist performance art. He asked John Law, who also had experience on the playa and was a defining founder of Cacophony Society, to take on central organizing functions. In the Cacophony Society's newsletter, it was announced as Zone Trip #4, A Bad Day at Black Rock (inspired by the movie of that name).

Meanwhile, the beach burn was interrupted by the park police for not having a permit. After striking a deal to raise the Man but not to burn it, event organizers disassembled the effigy and returned it to the vacant lot where it had been built. Shortly thereafter, the legs and torso of the Man were chain-sawed and the pieces removed when the lot was unexpectedly leased as a parking lot. The effigy was then reconstructed, led by Dan Miller, Harvey's then housemate of many years, just in time to take it to Zone Trip #4. [http://www.burningman.com/whatisburningman/1986_1996/]

Michael Mikel, another active Cacophonist, realized that a group unfamiliar with the environment of the playa would be helped by knowledgeable persons to ensure they did not get lost in the deep playa and risk dehydration and death. He took the name Danger Ranger and created the Black Rock Rangers.

Thus the seed of Black Rock City was germinated, first organized by Law and Mikel, based on Evans' idea, in collaboration with Harvey and James' and the burning man crew. As it had on the beach, it continued to double in size every year, growing by word of mouth alone, adding a broader cross-section of the creative community.

1991 marked the first year the event had a legal permit with the BLM (the Bureau of Land Management) and was billed solely as Burning Man once again.

By the end of '96, Law, Evans and James had moved on, though Law, Harvey, and Mikel dissolved their partnership and formed Paper Man LLC that owned the name "Burning Man" and leased it back to the newly formed Black Rock City LLC, the new organizing body of the event.

1997 to present

1997 was a pivotal year for the event. The car friendly, open playa had become over-run with 10,000 attendees and was deemed too dangerous to continue in the same way with unrestricted driving. To implement a ban on driving and recreate the event as a pedestrian/bicycle/art car only event, it was decided to move the event to private property. Fly ranch, with the adjoining Hualapai mini dry lake-bed playa was chosen. This brought Burning Man in to the jurisdiction of Washoe County permitting. To comply with the new permit requirements and to manage the increased liability load the organizers formed Black Rock City LLC.

Since then, one of the challenges faced by the LLC has been trying to balance the freedom of participants - a defining element of the experience - with the requirements of BLM and various law-enforcement groups. Over the years, numerous restrictions have been put in place, such as:
* An imposed curved grid street structure. [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/maps/07_maps/index.html Burning Man: Preparation - 2007 BRC MAP ] ]
* A speed limit of 5 mph (8 km/h). [http://www.burningman.com/on_the_playa/playa_vehicles/dmv.html Burning Man: On The Playa: Playa Vehicles: DMV ] ]
* A ban on driving, except for approved "mutant vehicles" and service vehicles. [ [http://www.burningman.com/on_the_playa/playa_vehicles/ Burning Man: On The Playa ] ]
* Restrictions and imposing of safety standards on mutant vehicles.
* A ban on camp fires and Tiki torches. [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/safety.html Burning Man :: preparation :: SAFETY ] ]
* Burning your own art must be done on an approved burn platform. [ [http://www.burningman.com/installations/burn_scar_prevention.html Playa Protection and Burn Scar Prevention ] ]
* A ban on fireworks. [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/law_enforcement.html#illegal Burning Man :: preparation :: LAW ENFORCEMENT AT BURNING MAN ] ]
* A ban on firearms. [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/participant_responsibilities.html Burning Man :: preparation :: PARTICIPANT RESPONSIBILITIES ] ]
* A ban on dogs. [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/pets.html Burning Man: Preparation ] ]

Another notable restriction to attendees is the 7 mile (11 km) long temporary plastic fence which surrounds the event and defines the pentagon of land used by the event on the southern edge of the Black Rock playa. [ [http://afterburn.burningman.com/06/dpw/setup_cleanup.html Burning Man :: AfterBurn Report 2006 :: DPW :: Set Up and Clean Up ] ] This 4 foot (1.2 meter) high barrier is known as the "trash fence" because its initial use was to catch wind-blown debris that may escape from campsites during the event. Since 2002, the area beyond this fence has not been accessible to Burning Man participants during the week of the event.Fact|date=October 2007

In January 2007, in response to litigation initiated by Paper Man LLC co-founder Michael Mikel, co-founder John Law announced that he would be pursuing Mikel and Harvey in a bid to make Paper Man LLC trademarks a part of the public domain. [ [http://laughingsquid.com/john-law-sues-his-former-burning-man-partners/ John Law Sues His Former Burning Man Partners | Laughing Squid ] ] [ [http://www.motherjones.com/news/outfront/2007/05/copyrighting_counterculture.html "Burnt by the Man"] , Mother Jones, May/June 2007.] In early 2008 the case was arbitrated and resulted in a settlement where Paper Man LLC was dissolved and its trademark ownership went to Black Rock City LLC.

At approximately 1:25 in the morning of August 28, 2007, a well-known, longtime critic of Burning Man organization's policies, who had previously pranked the Man as early as 1997, was arrested and charged with arson for deliberately setting the man on fire almost five days ahead of schedule, during the Lunar eclipse. [cite web|url=http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/story?id=3544780&page=1 |title=A Fiery Q&A With Paul Addis, the Prankster Accused of Burning the Man |accessdate=2007-08-30] [cite web|url=http://newenergytimes.com/BM07/LunarBurn.htm|title=Lunar Burn|accessdate=2008-08-31] A replacement effigy was built on site and installed in time to be burned on Saturday as planned. In June 2008, he pled guilty to the felony charge of destruction of property and was sentenced 1 to 4 years in prison.

Timeline of the event

Note: The man itself has remained close to 40 feet (12 meters) tall since 1989. Changes in the height and structure of the base account for the differing heights of the overall structures.Fact|date=September 2007

The statistics to the right illustrate the growth of the Burning Man event. [ [http://www.burningman.com/whatisburningman/about_burningman/bm_timeline.html a timeline on BurningMan.com] ]

The event has gone through several changes, including growing from a small handful of people to over 49,500 people attending the event in 2008. The scale of the event has increased enormously, and Black Rock City, LLC has become more structured since its creation in 1997.

Black Rock City is not considered a Census-designated place according to the United States Census Bureau. If it were, the 2000 event attendance would have placed it between Carson City and Pahrump, making it the 7th largest city in the state of Nevada at the time. Since then, Paradise, Sunrise Manor, and Spring Valley (all suburbs of Las Vegas) experienced proportionally larger population growths than the rest of the state, pushing Black Rock City to the 10th largest city in Nevada according to 2004 census estimates (still between Carson City and Pahrump). [ [http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/32000.html U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts for Nevada] ]


Because of the variety of goals fostered by participatory attendees, known as "Burners", Burning Man does not have a single focus. Features of the event are subject to the participants and include "community", "artwork", "absurdity", "decommodification", and "revelry". Participation is encouraged. [ [http://www.burningman.com/whatisburningman/ What is Burning Man?] "There are no rules about how one must behave or express oneself at this event (save the rules that serve to protect the health, safety, and experience of the community at large); rather, it is up to each participant to decide how they will contribute and what they will give to this community. ... Participants are encouraged to find a way to help make the theme come alive....]

The Burning Man event is governed by the 10 principles of Burning Man, which are radical inclusion, gifting, decommodification, radical self-reliance, radical self-expression, communal effort, civic responsibility, leaving no trace, participation, and immediacy. [http://www.burningman.com/whatisburningman/about_burningman/principles.html 10 principles of Burning Man] ]

;Radical inclusionAnyone is welcomed and there are no prerequisites to be part of Burning Man. All participants are expected to bring a ticket, provide for their own basic needs, and follow the minimal rules of the event.

;GiftingInstead of cash, event participants are encouraged to rely on a gift economy, a sort of potlatch. In the earliest days of the event, an underground barter economy also existed, in which burners exchanged material goods and/or "favors" with each other. While this was originally supported by the Burning Man organization, this now is largely discouraged. Instead, burners are encouraged to give gifts to one another unconditionally.

;DecommodificationNo cash transactions are permitted at the event in accordance with the principles of Burning Man, with the exception of the following: [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/community.html No Cash Transactions] ]
* Admission tickets, [ [http://tickets.burningman.com/info.php?i=25#gate Gate Tickets] ] although tickets for the 2008 event are only available in advance at select stores, by mail or via the [http://tickets.burningman.com/ Burning Man ticket website] .
* Café beverages such as coffee, chai, lemonade, etc., which are sold at Center Camp Café. [ [http://www.burningman.com/participate/cafe_coffee_shop.html Coffee] ]
* Ice, available for purchase at three places in the city: "Camp Arctica" in Center Camp, "Ice Cubed" at the 3 o'clock portal and "Ice-9" at the 9 o'clock portal. [ [http://www.burningman.com/on_the_playa/infrastructure/ice.html Camp Arctica] ] Ice sales benefit the local Gerlach-Empire school system.
* Tickets for the shuttle bus to the nearest Nevada communities of Gerlach and Empire which is operated by contractor Green Tortoise. [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/community.html Shuttle Service] ]
* A re-entry wristband, which allows a person to leave and re-enter the event and may be purchased at the gate upon exit. [ [http://www.burningman.com/whatisburningman/about_burningman/faq_what_is.html#Tickets Burning Man: What is Burning Man?: FAQ ] ]
* An airport use fee, payable at the airport upon first entry. [ [http://www.burningman.com/on_the_playa/airport/faq_air.html Burning Man: On The Playa ] ]
* RV dump service and camp gray water disposal service, available for cash from Johnny on the Spot, the official contractor. [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/rvs.html Burning Man: Preparation ] ]
* Diesel and biodiesel, supplied by Sierra Fuels, the official contractor.
* Private portable toilets and servicing, which can be arranged with the official contractor.

;Radical self-relianceBecause of the event's harsh environment and remote location, participants are expected to be responsible for their own subsistence. Since the LLC forbids any commerce, with the exception of the items stated in Decommodification, participants must be prepared and bring their own supplies such as water, food, proper clothing and shelter, just to name a few. [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/radical_self_reliance.html Burning Man :: preparation :: RADICAL SELF RELIANCE ] ] Nothing is provided by the event with the exception of portable toilets. [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/participant_responsibilities.html Burning Man :: preparation :: PARTICIPANT RESPONSIBILITIES ] ] . The only items for sale during the event are ice, chai, coffee and lemonade.

;Radical self-expressionParticipants are encouraged to express themselves in a number of ways through various art forms and projects. The event is clothing-optional and public nudity is common, though not practiced by the majority. [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/kids_at_bm.html Burningman.com Event Preparation] ] [http://www.jewishworldreview.com/weekly/standard092499.asp What I Saw at Burning Man] ]

;Communal effortBurning Man is a cooperative and collaborative event. Participants are encouraged to work with and help fellow participants. [http://www.burningman.com/participate/ Burning Man: Participate Main ] ]

;Civic responsibilityParticipants are encouraged and assume responsibility to be part of a civil society in which federal, state and local laws are obeyed and communicate this to other participants.

;"Leave No Trace" policyParticipants are committed to a leave-no-trace event. They strive to leave the area around them in better condition than before their arrival to ensure their participation does not have a long term impact on the environment.

;Participation"Attendees" are encouraged to participate since Burning Man is about participation in one form or another.

;ImmediacyParticipants are asked to become part of the event, to experience what is around them and society and to explore their inner selves and their relation to the event.


Art on the playa is assisted by the Artery, which helps artists place their art in the desert and ensures lighting (to prevent accidental collisions), burn-platform (to protect the integrity of the dry lake bed), and fire-safety requirements are met. [Burningman.com [http://www.burningman.com/installations/ Art Installations] ]

Since 1995, a different theme has been created, ostensibly by Larry Harvey, for each year's event. For 2006 the theme was Hope and Fear [Burningman.com [http://burningman.com/art_of_burningman/bm06_theme.html 2006 Theme] and for 2007 it was The Green Man. [Burningman.com [http://burningman.com/art_of_burningman/bm07_theme.html 2007 Theme: The Green Man] ] Citation
last=Scheff |first=Jonathan |date=September 2007 |accessdate=2008-08-03
title=Data Points: Green Burning Man |periodical=Scientific American |place=Black Rock City
publisher=Scientific American, Inc. |volume=297 |issue=3 |pages=34
] It determines to some extent the design of the Man (although his design and construction, while evolutionary, has remained relatively unchanged) and especially the structure on which he stands (an Observatory for "Vault of Heaven," a Lighthouse for "The Floating World"). These themes also greatly affect the designs participants employ in their artworks, costumes, camps and vehicles. [Burningman.com [http://www.burningman.com/whatisburningman/event_archives.html Event Archives] ]

Burning Man primarily features outsider art and visionary art, though a great variety of art forms are presented during the event. Creative expression through the arts and interactive art are encouraged at Burning Man. Numerous Theme Camps, registered and placed by the LLC, are created as event and residence centers by sizable sub-communities of participants and use extensive design and artistic elements to engage the greater community and meet the LLC's interactivity requirements. Music, performance, and guerrilla street theatre are art forms commonly presented within the camps and developed areas of the city. Adjacent to the city, the dry lake bed of Lake Lahontan serves as a tabula rasa for hundreds of isolated artworks, ranging from small to very large-scale art installations, often sculptures with kinetic, electronic, and fire elements.

Artwork is generally viewed as a gift the artist makes to the community, although art grants are available to participants from the LLC via a system of curation and oversight, with application deadlines early in the year. Grants are intended to help artists produce work beyond the scope of their own means, and are generally intended to cover only a portion of the costs associated with creation of the pieces, usually requiring considerable reliance on an artist's community resources. Aggregate funding for all grants varies depending on the number and quality of the submissions (usually well over 100) but amounts to several percent (on the order of $500,000 in recent years) of the gross receipts from ticket sales. In 2006, 29 pieces were funded.

Various standards regarding the nature of the artworks eligible for grants are set by the Art Department of the LLC, but compliance with the theme and interactivity are important considerations. This funding has fostered artistic communities, most notably in the Bay Area of California, the region that has historically provided a majority of the event's participants. There are active and successful outreach efforts to enlarge the regional scope of the event and the grant program. Among these is the Black Rock Arts Foundation (BRAF).

While BRAF does not fund any installations for the event itself, it relies on the donations from the LLC for a significant portion of its funding, and does facilitate presentation of work created for the event in outside venues as well as offering its own grants for artworks that typify interactivity and other principles and traditions the event.

Mutant vehicles

A Mutant Vehicle, sometimes called an Art Car, often motorized, are purpose-built or creatively altered cars and trucks. Participants who wish to bring motorized art cars must submit their designs in advance to the event's own DMV or "Department of Mutant Vehicles” for approval and for physical inspection at the time of the event. Vehicles that are unsafe, minimally altered, and/or whose primary function is to transport participants are discouraged or rejected. Some particularly interesting vehicles include: giant motorized muffins, an 8 legged mechanical spider and a Beatles style Yellow Submarine [Burningman.com [http://www.burningman.com/on_the_playa/playa_vehicles/dmv.html DMV] ]


In addition to the burning of the Man, the burning of a temple has become an activity at the event. David Best's temple projects were ritually burned from 2000 to 2004. [ [http://www.burningman.com/art_of_burningman/ Art of Burning Man] ]

In 2005, Best stepped aside to allow for another artist, Mark Grieve, to build his own interpretation of a temple. [ [http://afterburn.burningman.com/05/art/playa_art.html Burning Man :: AfterBurn Report 2005 :: Art :: Playa Art ] ] Grieve's temples were seen in both 2005 and 2006. However, in 2007 David Best took over the temple building duties for one last time. Best has stated that it is time to hand the temple over to the community, and in 2008 the "Basura Sagrada" temple was a collaboration of Shrine and Tucker Teutsch 3.0, built with the extensive help of their friends and the greater Burning Man community. [ [http://www.current.tv/pods/tvfreeburningman/PD07063 Current // Items ] ]

Black Rock City

Black Rock City, often abbreviated to BRC, is the name of the temporary city created by Burning Man participants. Much of the layout and general city infrastructure is constructed by Department of Public Works (DPW) volunteers who often reside in Black Rock City for several weeks before and after the event [ [http://www.burningman.com/on_the_playa/infrastructure/dpw.html Burning Man: On The Playa ] ] [ [http://www.burningman.com/on_the_playa/ Burning Man: On The Playa ] ] . The remainder of the city including theme camps, villages, art installations and individual camping are all created by participants.

City planning

The developed part of the city is currently arranged as series of concentric streets in an arc composing, since 1999, two-thirds of a 1.5 mile (2.4 km) diameter circle with the Man Sculpture and his supporting complex at the very center (coord|40|46|9.48|N|119|13|12.36|W|region:US in 2007). Radial streets, sometimes called Avenues, extend from the Man to the outermost circle. The outlines of these streets are visible on aerial photographs.

The innermost street is named the Esplanade, and the remaining streets are given names to coincide with the overall theme of the burn, and ordered in ways such as alphabetical order or stem to stern, to make them easier to recall. For example, in 1999, for the "Wheel of Time" theme, and again in 2004 for the "The Vault of Heaven" theme, the streets were named after the planets of the solar system. The radial streets are usually given a clock designation, for example, 6:00 or 6:15, in which the Man is at the center of the clock face and 12:00 is in the middle of the third of the arc lacking streets (usually at a bearing of 60° true from the Man). These avenues have been identified in other ways, notably in the 2002, in accordance with "The Floating World" theme as the degrees of a compass, for example, 180, 175 degrees. and in 2003 as part of the Beyond Belief theme as adjectives ("Rational, Absurd") that caused every intersection with a concentric street (named after concepts of belief such as "Authority, Creed") to form a phrase such as "Absurd Authority" or "Rational Creed". However, these proved unpopular with participants due to difficulty in navigating the city without the familiar clock layout.

Center Camp

Center Camp is located along the mid line of Black Rock City, facing the Man at the 6:00 position on the Esplanade. This area serves as a central meeting place for the entire city as well as contains the Center Camp Cafe, Camp Arctica and a number of other city institutions.


A section of the Playa is used for a non permanent airport, which is setup before each event. It is found on the Klamath Falls Sectional, using a CTAF of 122.9 MHz. The Black Rock Unicom is operational on that frequency during daylight hours, as the runway is not lighted. [ [http://www.burningman.com/on_the_playa/airport/airport.html Burning Man: On The Playa ] ]

Villages and theme camps

Villages and theme camps are located along the innermost streets of Black Rock City, often offering entertainment or a service to participants. [ [http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2005/08/31/BAGD0EFM9G1.DTL Theme Camps] ] .

Theme camps are usually a collective of people representing themselves under a single identity. Villages are usually a collection of smaller theme camps which have banded together in order to share resources and vie for better placement.

Theme camps and villages often form to create an atmosphere in the Black Rock City that their group envisioned. As Burning Man grows every year and attracts an even more diverse crowd theme camps are Black Rock City's own subcultures similar to what can be found in every other city.


The Burning Man event is heavily dependent on a large number of volunteers. Many of these participants donate their time and energy to the event [Burningman.com [http://www.burningman.com/participate/volunteer.html Volunteering page] .]

For Burning Man 2007 and 2008, the Volunteer Resource Manager was a participant by the name of Rooster.

afety, policing and regulations

Black Rock City is patrolled by various local and state law enforcement agencies as well as the Bureau of Land Management Rangers. Burning Man also has its own in-house group of volunteers, the Black Rock Rangers, who act as informal mediators when disputes arise between participants and between participants and law enforcement.

Firefighting, emergency medical services (EMS), mental health and communications support is provided by the volunteer Black Rock City Emergency Services Department (ESD).


Concerns regarding the "Leave No Trace" policy

Burning Man takes place in the middle of a large playa and while not inhabited by humans itself, the area around the playa is home to many animal, plant, and insect species. [ [http://www.nv.blm.gov/Winnemucca/NEPA/burningman/3_Burning_Man_EA.pdf Burning Man 2006-2010 ] ]

Supporters of Burning Man point out that participants are encouraged to leave no trace (LNT) of their visit to Black Rock City and not to contaminate the area with litter, commonly known as MOOP (Matter Out Of Place). Despite the BLM and LLC insistence on the practice of LNT, the amount of residual trash at the site has increased over the years. [Bureau of Land Management [http://www.nv.blm.gov/Winnemucca/NEPA/burningman/burningman.htm Trash Concerns] ]

Damage to the Playa

While fire is a primary component of many art exhibits and events, materials must be burned on a burn platform. [ [http://www.burningman.com/installations/burn_scar_prevention.html Playa Protection and Burn Scar Prevention ] ] At one time, burning was allowed to take place directly on the ground of the playa, but this practice allowed burn scars to form and was discontinued. While Burning Man does provide instructions on how to build a Burn Platform and what not to burn, there are concerns on whether some participants do not follow these instructions to the detriment of the environment and the participants. [ [http://www.burningman.com/environment/resources/burning.html Burning Man: Resources - Burn Effects ] ] [ [http://www.burningman.com/preparation/event_survival/toxic.html Burning Man: Preparation ] ]

The Bureau of Land Management, which maintains the desert, has very strict requirements for the event. These stipulations include trash cleanup, removal of burn scars, dust abatement, and capture of fluid drippings from participant vehicles. For four weeks after the event has ended, the Black Rock City Department of Public Works (BRC - DPW) Playa Restoration Crew remains in the desert, cleaning up after the temporary city and making sure that no evidence of the event remains. [ [http://www.nv.blm.gov/Winnemucca/NEPA/burningman/burningman.htm Bureau of Land Management] ]

Burning Man and its effect on global warming

A group of San Francisco scientists are calculating how much the event will contribute to global warming. [SFGate [http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2006/08/26/BAGV7KPVGE1.DTL Global Warming and Burning man article] ] They have created the CoolingMan organization [ [http://www.coolingman.org/ The CoolingMan] website] and have implemented a system that will calculate how much greenhouse gases Burning Man participants will create. The project has inspired many to look for positive ways to get involved in the global warming and climate change movements by seeking out solutions. The CoolingMan website suggests ways that Burners may offset the damage by planting trees or investing in alternative energy solutions. [Coolingman.org [http://www.coolingman.org/About/PlayaGHGCalculator.cfm CoolingMan Calculator] ]

However, in 2007 Burning Man's "Green Man" theme received criticism for "Crude Awakening," the 99-foot oil derrick that consumed 900 gallons of jet fuel and 2,000 gallons of liquid propane to blast a mushroom cloud 300 feet high into the sky, using enough unharnessed energy to power the entire Bay Area for one minute. [Jolia Sidona Allen, [http://commongroundmag.com/2008/05/greenparty0805.html Common Ground Magazine "Green Party"] , May 2008, Elsa Wenzel, [http://news.cnet.com/8301-10784_3-9778777-7.html How green was Burning Man?] , September 17 2007, Brian Doherty, [http://blog.wired.com/underwire/2007/08/crude-awakening.html Wired Blog Network Underwire "Crude Awakening Arises at Burning Man"] , August 2007.] In an attempt to offset some of the event's carbon footprint, 30- and 150- solar arrays were constructed in 2007 as permanent artifacts, providing an estimated annual carbon offset of 559 tons.

Regional events

The popularity of Burning Man has encouraged other groups and organizations to hold events similar to Burning Man. In recent years, burners wishing to experience Burning Man more frequently than once per year have banded together to create local regional events such as SOAK [http://www.burningmanportland.com] in Oregon; InterFuse in Missouri; Xara Dulzura and Fuego de los Muertos in San Diego; Playa del Fuego in Delaware; Firefly in New England; Burning Flipside in Texas; [http://www.auraman.com/AuraMan/Welcome.html AuraMan] in Indiana; Recompression near Vancouver, British Columbia; Kiwiburn in Whakamaru, New Zealand; Toast in Arizona; and Nowhere near Zaragoza in Spain.

Some of the events are officially affiliated with the Burning Man organization via the [http://regionals.burningman.com/ Burning Man Regional Network] . This official affiliation usually requires the event to conform to certain standards outlined by the Burning Man organization, and to be substantially coordinated by a "Burning Man Regional Contact," a volunteer organizer with an official relationship to the Burning Man Project via a legal Letter of Agreement. In exchange for conforming to these standards, the event is granted permission to officially advertise as a Burning Man Regional Event.

Burning Man in popular culture


* Third Eye Blind's first CD included a track titled "Burning Man"
* In 1999, the band Queensrÿche included a track titled "Burning Man" on their "Q2K" album.
* Track 6 on Mastodon's 2001 album Remission is titled "Burning Man".
* Neutral Milk Hotel's "Song Against Sex" references the festival.

Television and film

Burning Man has been featured in both fictional and non-fictional accounts on American television.

* In the 1997 "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" episode "When She Was Bad", Sunnydale High's computer science teacher Jenny Calendar describes her summer vacation (which included attending Burning Man) to Buffy's watcher, Rupert Giles:
*:"I did Burning Man in Black Rock, ohhh, such a great festival, you should've been there. They had drum rituals, mobile sculptures, raves, naked mud dances, you would've just... hated it with a fiery passion!" Giles replies: "No, I can't imagine finding any redeeming...naked?"

* In the 2000 "The Simpsons" episode "Lisa the Tree Hugger", Lisa joins the environmental group Dirt First which is looking for someone to camp out with in an endangered tree. The group's leader, Jesse, says, "Once you're up there, you can't come down. Not for a Phish concert, not even for Burning Man."

* In an episode of "", Jimmy's dad attends an event called Burning Duck.

* In the 2003 "Reno 911!" episode "Burning Man Festival," the officers, planning to go undercover at Burning Man, head out from Reno but get lost on the way, encountering various embarrassing situations such as having to attend a family restaurant in their fairly ridiculous costumes and getting questioned by other fellow cops. [ [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0685169/ "Reno 911!" Burning Man Festival (2003) ] ]

* In the 2005 "South Park" episode "Die Hippie, Die," Eric Cartman briefly makes references to Burning Man while talking about hippie festivals. Also, in the background at the hippie festival, a large neon man, similar to the one at Burning Man, can be seen.

* In the 2005 "American Dad!" episode "Francine's Flashback," Stan and Hayley actually attend the event in order to rescue Francine, who had had her memory erased by Stan.

* In the 2005 "Malcolm in the Middle" episode "," Hal and Lois discover Malcolm and Reese's plan to sneak off to Burning Man, and decide to make it a family outing, with predictably disastrous results. Hal sets up a barbecue grill and curious observers assume that he's actually engaged in some kind of "suburban dad" performance art. Reese and Lois embrace the true spirit of the event and Malcolm loses his virginity to an older woman, a spiritualist healer. In the end, as opposed to the man burning, the RV the family came in is burned and is thus dubbed "Burning Van."

* Burning Man 2006 was covered extensively for television for the first time by Current TV which handed out cameras to participants and broadcast daily updates via satellite from the playa. TV Free Burning Man also provided TV viewers an hour long live feed of The Burn. In keeping with the spirit of Burning Man, Current TV removed their corporate branding and aired coverage without commercial sponsorship. The result was a temporary "pirate" TV station known simply as [http://current.com/topics/76253382_tv_free_burning_man TV Free Burning Man] . TV Free returned in 2007 and 2008; the 2007 coverage was nominated for an news Emmy Award [http://www.emmyonline.org/mediacenter/news_29th_nominees_data_list.html]

* In the 2007 film "Knocked Up", the roommates of the main character, played by Seth Rogen, make a bet with one of the roommates, Martin, that he will not shave his beard or cut his hair in exchange for one year of rent. Throughout the movie Martin is the butt of a number of beard jokes, including in the club scene, where Jonah Hill asks Martin, "How was Burning Man this year?"

* In the "Clone High" episode titled "Homecoming: A Shot in the D'Arc", Clone High principal, Cinnamon J. Scudworth, and GESH (Genetically Engineered Super Human High) principal, Colonel Principal, make a bet on a basketball game between the two schools. Colonel Principal's bet is the Clone High won't score a single point against GESH. The loser has to do the other principal's laundry for a week. When Clone High does score one point, Scudworth holds up a pair of stained underwear in front of Colonel Principal and says "I wore these bad boys at Burning Man...7 years in a row!"

* In an episode of "Dharma & Greg", the couple try explaining what Burning Man is to Greg's parents... who obviously don't get "it".

* In an episode of "Lucy, the Daughter of the Devil", Satan's interns cause DJ Jesus to crash (making him absent for an appearance at Burning Man). From there Satan temps DJ Jesus with whores and a brothel. DJ Jesus says, "If you like this, you'd love Burning Man. No one wears clothes. It's all body paint and glitter."

* In an episode of "", Xavier has his late-fathers special crystal necklace stolen by a Juggling "squatter". Xavier finds out that the "squatter" has gone to Burning Man, so he goes forth in search of the crystal. While looking for the Juggler another "squatter" tells Xavier about burning man, "Burning man seemed kind of sexist so we call it 'Burning Person'."

* In an episode of "Arrested Development", Kitty Sanchez (Judy Greer), the assistant of paterfamilias George Bluth, Sr. (Jeffrey Tambor), calls in sick with the flu and is very specific about how many days it will take her to recover, even specifying the date she will return. Later, Michael Bluth (Jason Bateman), George's son, notes "Burning Man" is written on a legal pad on her desk, along with the dates she said she would be sick.

* In a 2008 episode of "The Colbert Report" (Season 4, Episode 107), images of the festival are used to portray the 2008 Democratic National Convention.

* In the mockumentary , jam band Electric Apricot played a song at Festeroo called "Hey Are You Going To Burning Man?"

oftware and technology

Burning Man references in software include:

* Virtual world Second Life has an annual virtual burn, Burning Life, that coincides with Burning Man [ [http://blog.secondlife.com/2007/08/15/burning-life-2007/ Burning Life 2007! « Official Second Life Blog ] ] .

* In the video game , one of the latter venues the player performs at is a reference to Burning Man entitled "Desert Rock Tour". The player's band plays on a large stage in the middle of the desert with a giant neon light tubed alien standing over the drummer. Unlike Burning Man, several concession stands and such can also be seen along the side of the crowd.

* In the World Of Warcraft massively multi-player online game, one of the activities during its annual Hallow's End held every October includes the Wickerman Festival, where a tall straw effigy is burned in a nightly celebration. [ [http://www.worldofwarcraft.com/info/events/hallowsend/ World of Warcraft Hallow's End event 2008] ]

* [http://openbts.sourceforge.net/ OpenBTS] system was tested during the Burning Man 2008 festival [ [http://openbts.sourceforge.net/FieldTest/index.html OpenBTS testing during Burning Man 2008] ] .


* In issue 75 of the Marvel Comics book "X-Force", the characters visited a thinly disguised Burning Man-like event entitled "Exploding Colossal Man."
* In Dan Simmons science fiction novel Ilium (novel), a future earth is represented where the Burning Man festival occurs sporadically every few decades or years in a different location.
* America's most widely distributed satirical newspaper "The Onion" has published several jabs at the BMorg, including 1998's "Local Teen Definitely Going to Burning Man Next Year" [ [http://www.theonion.com/content/node/28911/ Local Teen 'Definitely' Going To Burning Man Next Year | The Onion - America's Finest News Source ] ] , which describes someone discovering Burning Man through an MTV broadcast encouraged by BMorg, 2003's "No One Makes It to Burning Man Festival" [ [http://www.theonion.com/content/node/29344/ No One Makes It To Burning Man Festival | The Onion - America's Finest News Source ] ] , and most notably weighing in on the Early Burn controversy with the October 18, 2007 issue, whose front page was headlined by "Conceptual Terrorists Encase Sears Tower In Jell-O" [ [http://www.theonion.com/content/news/conceptual_terrorists_encase_sears Conceptual Terrorists Encase Sears Tower In Jell-O | The Onion - America's Finest News Source ] ] , followed up by "It Only Tuesday", and "'95-'96 Prayers Finally Answered". Two of these front page articles were continued, so when reader opens to page 6-7, the two leading headlines are "Fuck-Fiends in Funk" and "Why Didn't Authorities See This Aesthetic Tragedy Coming?"
* The book "The Google Story" by David A. Vise and Mark Malseed contains an entire chapter describing how Larry Page and Sergey Brin, the creators of the Google search engine, were regular attendees of the event. The first Google Doodle showed Burning Man.
* A significant portion of the novel "The Blood Price" by Jon Evans takes place at Burning Man.
*Bőnner, Bertine 2005. Das Burning Man Projekt - Religiosität und Spiritualität in Black Rock City? Eine ethnologische Perspektive. Magisterarbeit. Grin Verlag*Kristen, Christine: Reconnecting art and life at Burning Man. in: Raw Vision, Nr. 57 (Winter 2006), S. 28 - 35.
*Chen, Katherine 2004. The Burning Man Organization Grows Up: Blending Bureaucratic and Alternative Structures. Dissertation. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University
*Doherty, Brian 2004. This is Burning Man. The Rise of a New American Underground. Boston/New York: Little, Brown and Company
*Hockett, Jeremy 2004. Reckoning Ritual and Counterculture in the Burning Man Community: Communication, Ethnography, and the Self in Reflexive Modernism. Dissertation. Albuquerque, New Mexico: The University of New Mexico
*Kozinets, Robert V. 2002. Can Consumers Escape the Market? Emancipatory Illuminations from Burning Man. In: Journal of Consumer Research, 29, June 2002, 20-38.
*Kozinets, Robert V. (2003), “The Moment of Infinite Fire,” in Time, Space, and the Market: Retroscapes Rising, ed. Stephen Brown and John F. Sherry. Jr., New York: M. E. Sharpe, 199-216.*Kozinets, Robert V. and John F. Sherry, Jr. 2005. “Welcome to the Black Rock Café,” in Afterburn: Reflections on Burning Man, ed. Lee Gilmore and Mark van Proyen, Albequerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press, 87-106.
*Kozinets, Robert V. and John F. Sherry, Jr. (2004), “Dancing on Common Ground: Exploring the Sacred at Burning Man,” in Rave Culture and Religion, ed. Graham St. John, New York and London: Routledge, 287-303.
*Kreuter, Holly 2002. Drama in the Desert: The Sights and Sounds of Burning Man. San Francisco: Raised Barn Press
*Morehead, John W. 2007. Burning Man Festival as Life-Enhancing, Post-Christendom 'Middle Way'. MA Thesis. Salt Lake City, Utah: Salt Lake Theological Seminary
*Nash, A. Leo 2007. Burning Man: Art in the Desert, Introduction by Daniel Pinchbeck. New York: Harry N. Abrams
*Pike, Sarah M. 2001. Desert Goddesses and Apocalyptic Art. Making Sacred Space at the Burning Man Festival. In: Mazur, Eric Michael/McCarthy, Kate (Hrsg.): God in the Details. American Religion in Popular Culture. London/New York: Routledge, 155-176
*Sherry, John F. Jr. and Robert V. Kozinets (2007), "Comedy of the Commons: Nomadic Spirituality and the Burning Man Festival," in Russell W. Belk and John F. Sherry, Jr., ed. Research in Consumer Behavior, Vol. 11: Consumer Culture Theory, Oxford: Elsevier, 119-147.
*Sherry, John F., Jr. and Robert V. Kozinets (2004), “Sacred Iconography in Secular Space: Altars, Alters and Alterity at the Burning Man Project,” in Contemporary Consumption Rituals: A Research Anthology, ed. Cele Otnes and Tina Lowry, Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum, 291-311.
*Sherry, John F. Jr., Robert V. Kozinets, and Stefania Borghini, and. (2007), “Agents in Paradise: Experiential Co-Creation through Emplacement, Ritualization, and Community,” in Consuming Experiences, ed. Antonella Carù and Bernard Cova, London and New York: Routledge, 17-33.
*Traub, Barbara 2006. Desert to Dream: A Decade of Burning Man Photography. San Francisco: Immedium
*Van Proyen, Mark/Gilmore, Lee (Hrsg.): AfterBurn: Reflections on Burning Man. New Mexico: University of New Mexico Press

ee also

* Apogaea
* Art Car
* Black Rock Ranger
* Brian Doherty (journalist)
* Cacophony Society
* Culture Jamming
* Dada
* John Law
* Larry Harvey
* List of regional Burning Man events
* Mondo spider
* Scandinavian Institute of Comparative Vandalism
* Situationist International
* Temporary Autonomous Zone
* Zozobra
* Mutantspace


External links

* [http://www.burningman.com/ Official Website]
*dmoz|Regional/North_America/United_States/Nevada/Arts_and_Entertainment/Events/Burning_Man/|Burning Man
*yahoo|Arts/Events/Festivals/Burning_Man_Project/|Burning Man
*wikitravel|Black Rock City
* [http://www.topix.com/arts/burning-man News around the country about Burning Man]
* [http://current.com/topics/76253382_tv_free_burning_man TV Free Burning Man website]

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