Burning Man 2014 Rules and Regulations

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Hint: download the PDF, it’s much easier to read.

Is my medical marijuana card valid in Black Rock City? Can I have an open container on an art car? Can I bring fireworks? What’s the speed limit? Is it cool if I pee on the playa?

These questions and more are answered in this handy 2-page infographic PDF containing all the key rules and regulations that are enforced in Black Rock City.

Download the PDF, print it (if you need to) and make sure your friends and campmates know what’s in there … before you head to Black Rock City.

Why, here it is now.

 

27 thoughts on “Burning Man 2014 Rules and Regulations

  • I wonder if the Burning Man of days of old had all these god damned rules. I think It is because of the increasing popularity of the event, and the subsequent masses of people attending, that the authoritarian-minded representatives of governance and control want to intrude upon people’s radical self expression.

    Although I agree with some of the rules, its presentation comes off as heavy handed and threatening. That’s the philosophical flaw in your principle of “Radical Inclusion”. The idea is noble, but its implementation doesn’t work, because there are so many low quality human beings out there.

    Consequently, it is the existence of these low quality bastards that justifies the liberty-fucking actions of government, be it local, state or federal. I don’t know what Burning Man was like in the past, but I have read on blogs on your own website about some peoples’ disappointment about the “death” of Burning Man as time marched on.

    I wanted to go to Burning Man this year. I was thinking that this might be my last chance to attend an affair I probably would have enjoyed, before the decline set in caused by the death of freedom by too much law enforcement and government bureaucracy.

    I couldn’t get a ticket, so I probably will never really know what it is like. The way things are shaping up regarding your attempt to control the number of vehicles by pressuring people to rideshare when they don’t want to, or don’t have anyone to rideshare with, as well as the other rules and restrictions, I wonder if I already missed my chance to experience the real Burning Man. Whatever that is.

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  • You are correct, it was far better in the past. The yuppy crowd and the BS law has utterly destroyed what it was like a decade + ago. I’ve been 14 times since ’93, this year will be my last. Yes I may be aging, but I doubt it’s my age that has changed me as much as this event. I’ve spent tens of thousands on art cars and travel expenses where now one of the biggest expenses is the damn ticket. When it cost $50 for two to attend was one thing, but now… shit man I have to mortgage my house.

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  • I believe that Nevada now DOES provide reciprocity for out-of-state medical marijuana recommendations or ID cards. I am checking with definitive sources. The Nevada legislature passed and Gov. Sandoval signed Senate Bill 374 on June 12, 2013, improving Nevada’s medical marijuana laws. See http://www.mpp.org/states/nevada/SB374-Summary.pdf . That says:

    The law contains reciprocity provisions, which recognize patients from other states so long as the other state programs are substantially similar to the requirements of Nevada law.

    If this works as I believe it does, a state-issued medical marijuana ID card from another state would protect you from arrest and prosecution by Nevada state and county police. You have to follow Nevada limits on how much marijuana you are allowed. This has no legal effect on federal officers such as the Bureau of Land Management, but informally they may be more sympathetic if you show them your valid state-issued medical marijuana ID. Protection from half the cops is better than protection from none!

    I will get back to you with more info — but shouldn’t the Burning Man Org actually check the legal advice that it gives its participants annually? Laws DO change — and this one changed before the 2013 burn!

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  • I have a tangerine tree. It is one of those weird fruit trees that produces heavily … but only every other year. The fruit is incredibly sweet and tasty, more so than any other citrus tree I have. I have many. There’s a term for this on/off phenomenon but I don’t recall what it is. Stay with me here I have a point. And I have ADD so I meander. During an “off” year my tree may produce just 30 beautiful tangerines. That’s what happened in 2011. In 2012 I was gobsmacked by the amount of fruit produced on this now larger tree. With heavy heart I even culled the fruit by picking every third little green fruit off early in the season. This ensures larger, tastier fruit. But then, something horrible happened. The tree was nearly completely orange … covered with beautiful, mind-blowing sweet tangerines. I picked and gifted and gifted and picked and it was magic. But towards the end of the cycle I saw the tree was hurting. An arborist told me that it had put so much energy into creating beautiful fruit that it was costing the tree itself. Leaves browned and fell. Then small branches withered and died. Then larger branches died. It happened quickly. I was assured this was no disease — just that it had been too successful.

    Which brings me to Burning Man. I think we’re going through a period of this tangerine effect now and may well becoming a victim of our “success”. It seems like everyone heard and now wants to be a part of Burning Man. The news items. the web coverage. the photo essays … all created this urge for people to come, to belong .. to join. Some of these people were there for the party only and to say, “I was there!” Hurt feelings happened when rules were established rules for tickets and tough decisions were made by the BR Corp. Do we reward long-standing Burners or focus on new blood. New Blood is so important to any organism. But so is tribal wisdom and legacy and our shared history. This is an impossibly tough decision and “we” (they?) tried to hit the middle ground. We see here that there are new rules that “detract from self-expression” and make it seem like we’re getting away from our “roots”. And no doubt these rules grew out of incidents and experiences and are well-intended but … to many they seem a portent of dark thunderheads forming on the horizon. We see this kind of growith problem all the time. The first Starbucks I went into in Seattle was actually cool. When we are small and organic it’s beautiful and healthy but when we become big and “successful” it can have unintended and unexpected consequences even though we are touching more people.

    Just like my tangerine tree. I fed it organic fish emulsion and hand-collected kelp extract from San Diego. I dunno, is it still vegan? I don’t know! But I digress.

    Here’s what I learned from my tangerine tree and a cool tree shaman. My tree was hovering near death — death from success. I talked to it and asked for forgiveness for what I had to do next. Then I took my trimmers and cut and cut and cut. I cut a third of it off leaving only the healthy wood. I made a solution from kelp meal and compost tea that I’d percolated with oxygen and enriched with maple syrup to promote the growth of good things for sick trees. I drenched the tree and the soil around it … over and over. I prayed over it and drenched it some more. Not too much. Not too little. Nothing happened. But the tree held on. It stayed alive … but barely. It broke my heart every time I looked at it. It was so weak. I could not have been more worried. During this time I had to resist the urge to do other things, drastic things like using “effectively proven chemical products” and even more dramatic: cutting it off at the graft line and attaching a new body. That’s what the corporate citrus growers said to do. But I am committed to low and slow means of growing so nope.

    About six months later I saw the little shoots emerging when I looked at the tree one morning. Small at first but then there was a flush of new growth. We were going to be OK me and the tree. My most treasured tree was alive and well again. We went through a slow year. Now it’s 2014. At this point I made another hard decision and trimmed some of the new growth to keep the tree smaller. There’s an art to this. Branches that grew too low … snip. Branches that crossed others … snip. Suckers that grew below the graft line … snip. When it bloomed I pinched many of the blossoms off. I made sure the blossoms were not too close together. Mind you this tree wanted to be bountiful and make the world happy. I had to manage that. And it seemed like i was playing god but I love my trees and doing nothing was notr an option.

    Which brings me back to Burning Man. Maybe we … get rid of the suckers, get rid of those that “cross” our principals. Keep it small and healthy. Invite new growth but judiciously. Protect and honor old wood and the root stock and the scion. Just don’t let Burning Man overfruit. If that’s not a word it is now.

    I’m an industrial shaman by trade. I help large people organisms to thrive and grow. What I learned from the tangerine I’ve put into practice. It works but it’s hard to do. Someone has to make tough decisions. And … the first cut is the worst. Then, it gets easier. I know there is consideration of many approaches to preserving the essential wonder that is BM. I’d say as an outsider looking in that the vision is muddy. If asked I’d suggest that everything we need to know can be learned in the garden. Start with the soil and make it better than good. Space things out. Encourage diversity. Rotate. Compost everything that dies. Talk to old people and learn what they have learned. Invite other species in. Learn from mistakes. Grow what heals you. Share everything. Oh and pee in your compost.

    Aho.

    Sage

    I do not to label the plants in my garden instead, I prefer that they name me.

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  • I’ve never been to BM but have known a few people that have. The most common comment was “you just have to see it for yourself”. That has always suggested a spectator orientation to me, and just this summer I decided to read ‘most’ of the BM website, a few of the blogs and got on the JRS email list. I have a much better idea about it now (as much as web research can relate, anyway) and it seems to me that the vastly increased law enforcement presence was inevitable. You can see the cops as an insult to the BM way, but so are the shirtcocks, yahoos and tourists. The Borg wanted a ‘city’, and they’re getting one, with a few of a city’s warts, also. If there are perverts and predators out there, and there are, then toeing the line in the interest of having a presence of law enforcement might be more of a comfort than an outrage. The one rape I read about was committed by a Techno music DJ and his bouncer, using some kind of knockout drug dissolved in what looked like just a cup of water. Burner preying on Burner.

    Seventy thousand people, all with their own interpretation of radically expressing themselves, out on a huge playa with plenty of dark corners behind mutant cars and other structures, can be a scary thought. Burning Man might need to get back to its exclusive roots, make the visitor art/theme camp requirements more stringent, and try to live with fewer ticket sales. But I think The Man will be patrolling the Burning Man permanently, now.

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  • E
    As they yearn for the nostalgic days of the burn I hear veteran burners complain about how burning man has changed. Has Burning man changed? Of couse it has, as does everything. Thank goodness for change.
    I have returned home nine times and each time has been a completely different ever changing journey. In a way, i have grown and learned alongside Burning man. Some years were easy others were hard but every year was great.
    If burning man was the same as it used to be it would be like hearing the same song three times a day for the last 30 years. The desert has given me so much and it is part of what makes me who i am today and i look forward to everything she can throw my way.

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  • y’all need to quit bitching. Change is a constant. Growth and development require evolution. Sadly….some people do suck – and that mandates governing. In order to include them.. and give them a chance to learn, grow, and not suck so bad……here we are. This year is going to be F-ing amazing, and next year will be even better.

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  • In thinking about the rules and considering the comments, I’d invite anyone to hold an event involving 68k people, which is respectful of the people and environment, without them. The energy devoted to the “drug thing” is a wasteful use of resources for agencies claiming poverty but alas, they gotten teach those hippies a lesson by golly…

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  • People who never been to burning man and yet complain that burning man isn’t cool anymore reminded me of priests lecturing about sex. They just sound pompous and stupid.
    I’ve gone 15 years and Burning Man is different every year. With 1000 people you could have guns and drive-by shooting ranges. With 70,000 people you’d have drive-by shootings. Most of the cops do a fairly good job of accepting burning man (try walking around Reno naked and see how accepting the cops will be).
    Compare burning man to any other festival with 70,000 people and you can see how special Burning Man is.

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  • Hi there,

    Wow, a lot of people have time on their hands to diss a product of a caring group of people, one that is quite harmless, concise, and well…obvious.

    That’s time spent (wasted?) on dissing what is an amazingly managed event. There’s nothing like BM in the world. It’s brilliant that it even exists, and that it has endured, no matter the format or whether the 10’s of 1000s of participants are to your liking or not.

    Remember that there is no completely lawless country in the world, this is a product of civilisation, not BM organisers. I don’t mind that no-one is allowed to carry a gun, be drunk behind the wheel if a 8t RV, or leave MOOP around. What are you complaining about exactly?

    Keep on keeping on BM! I appreciate you all.

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  • SageSmokes I loved your story. I’ve never been to BM but hope to make it there one day. It will be hard though as I live in Europe so it will be very expensive and I still don’t get how you get a ticket. :) Thanks for the beautiful story.

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  • @sage… I like your story, but burning man isn’t a coddled little thing… its a raw open-ended raging forest arc of of stunning diversity. Like nature, its health and survival is due to the shear force of its diversity. A few rules are the necessity of cell strength… perhaps an apt metaphor… rage on in your creative ways playa lovers. The one lesson I’ve leaned out there and everywhere else… manage your energy, burnout sucks.

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  • Hey, I want to go eventually and hopefully the spirit of the original event or some of it remains. But like Woodstock, some things can’t be replicated…they are spontaneous. You can’t keep replicating something that was spontaneous. Everyone should have an experience like I’ve heard, but it doesn’t mean you have a right to it. Hopefully there will be other event similar to Burning Man that provide that opportunity. The complaints about assholes are valid because this sort of thing attracts them and by injecting rules to limit assholes, you’ve changed the premise of the original act: freedom. But with freedom comes responsibility, and if everyone does ‘get” that simple reality, then you’re stuck with something less. Either you want to try to keep the original idea stressing to new comers that they have responsibilities, or assume they have the wisdom to know this simple fact. If they don’t, and you allow assholes to impose on others’ freedom and good time, then there is no freedom. The event has reverted to some kind of original state of nature where might makes right and freedom is lost to the assholes. It’s a fine line to be walked, but freedom requires responsiblity to other’s and respect of the freedom of the others. I hope people “get” this. I tired of reading about how things ‘used’ to be…like they are in some kind of clique out of high school.

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  • Let me start by saying I too have never been to Burning Man. But I do have a ticket and will be there this year. I have heard and read about it for years and finally have the opportunity to go. I will be with my daughter and son-in-law who have gone numerous times.

    The question comes up, how can Anyone say what it is like or what it used to be like if they haven’t been there? How do you know this isn’t the Burning Man intended for YOU? When you go on a vacation to some exotic place do you spend all your time asking people what it was like 10-20 years ago? Do you sit around complaining about how it “used to be” even though you never experienced it before? No, you enjoy the moment.
    So why would you sit at home complaining that Burning Man Just isn’t the same anymore if you have never experienced that?

    Chronologically I am part of the older generation, but I am a Virgin Burner. I plan on experiencing it with anticipation, because no matter how it “Used to be” This first experience will be the only way I have known Burning Man. And if I go back next year and it has even changed for me and I don’t like it, I will either go with the flow and enjoy the experience anew, or I will stop going. But I will NOT sit at home complaining about how things should be or should have been in order to make ME happy.

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  • Hey kids, a lavish gift for you… a free drug that is legal, approved and recommended for adults, kids and babies… even the cops are constantly high on it!!! Completely natural, did I say free? Abundant everywhere, except outerspace. An unpatented special secretion by all plants and algae… O2 … indulge often! Take an extra hit for me, so high right now, perfect drug to burn with ;o …meet me at Souk for a suck…

    Then of course there other free legal drugs… runners high endorphins and sex induced hormones (legal in privacy)… and don’t forget to partake in one of the best legal drugs… solitude… the high of not not getting high, try it out by the trash fence …End of natural drug addled, mind blown rant…

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  • Rules? Tickets? People?

    I met some people in Reno one year who told me about this guy who was going to go Burn something. So, I followed them and checked it out. Turned out a little wilder than I expected but the chick was kind of hot and I was young back then and nicely buzzed. I think there was maybe 200 people there. To see what it has become and to think I went to the first Nevada burn. What’s up with the names?? I call bullshit, to tell me I have to go to be given a Burner name…WTF…I’m an Original Nevada Burner! I don’t think it was at Black Rock cause honestly I have no idea where the fuck we drove to, 30 minutes outside of Reno it all “looked” the same back then. Not sure if I’d go again if the nick name is now Camp Herpes now. I’d like to take the wife but I know her and I well enough-we’d indulge. Just getting too old to keep rolling the dice. Naw, fuck that, when I finally get the chance I’ll take her-remind each other of our wilder times before we met. Real simple, don’t get so fucked up you don’t remember getting fucked or you A’Hole will remind you in the morning…have fun all.

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  • SageSmoke-
    I read your statement, the crime is we “can’t go back”, fact of life. I was fortunate to be a part of the first one. Still kind of wonder if one of those two girls I met that weekend are part the whole organizing of it now….hmmm.

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  • I’ve lived my life in constant search mode…always doing this and that…looking for the next thing. I’ve heard about this event but never known anyone who’s actually gone. I just got out of the military and now I’m completely lost at what I’m supposed to do with myself now. I watched a documentary on this event and I really want to go at least once…but it seems almost impossible. I’m not amazing at art…I draw and film and do photography but I don’t feel like I can contribute on the same level as what I see. Maybe someday I’ll get my chance…but I doubt it.

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