[Judes has been a Burner since 1999 and an advocate for playa families. She first brought her son Dexter to BRC when he was 16-months-old, who has 8 Burns under his belt. For 4 years, Judes hosted Hot Monkey Sox, a popular sock monkey workshop camp in Kidsville. In 2010, she founded the Black Rock Scouts program so kids could attend playa-cational events, volunteer with BRC Departments and learn to give back to the BRC community.]
Surviving at Black Rock City is difficult enough, and now you want to bring your kids? That’s great!
It can certainly be daunting the first time, but children actually thrive in the playa environment. It just takes some extra preparation, planning and diligence. Trying to get a toddler to drink her weight in water isn’t easy, but lots of families have found ways to not only survive, but flourish on the playa. Speaking as a parent, I truly believe that the Black Rock City experience and the Ten Principles provide an amazing educational immersion that can’t be found anywhere else.
So where do parents find the best information on how to prepare for a successful burn?
The Burning Man website’s section on Kids at Burning Man is a great place to start, but it doesn’t have all the info you may want.
That’s why Kidsville parents (myself included) have collaborated on a thorough and detailed guide for Burner families. Jesper from Kidsville has kindly put it all together into a single, helpful, and entertaining Kidsville Survival Guide.
It covers everything from child safety, playa clothes, kid food and taking the kids out of school for the Burn. While it has information specific to camping in Kidsville, it’s got a ton of useful information for all families. Check it out!
This truck does not exist. Shoop by Loopy.
In the last edition of The Burner’s Guide to Leaving No Trace, you and I got knee-deep into your camp trash can. That was fun, but we don’t need to keep wading around in it, do we? So this time, I’ll teach you how to take that trash and turn it into gold!
Did you know that there is a Burning Man trash economy? Second only to the gift economy, the EXodus TRAsh and Recycling Network (EXTRA for short) is a bustling system of collection points for trash disposal, free recycling, and charitable donations, all of which directly benefit Burning Man and local communities in Nevada.
How does EXTRA work for you and your garbagio? Read on to find out.
Read more »
Let’s get one thing out of the way right off the bat: this post will not reveal a magic solution to Burning Man’s traffic woes. There is no wand to wave to quickly transport you onto the playa and prevent you from ever having another exhausting Exodus experience. If I said that, you’d know I was lying, because getting 60,000 people in and out of Black Rock City using a two lane rural highway is no easy task. Traffic will, for the foreseeable future, be a part of the Burning Man experience.
Exodus 2005. Photo by Borealis Aurora
Yep, I said it. And I know you know it. So, let’s talk about what we can do to make getting in and out of BRC a better experience for everyone, and consider what constitutes reasonable wait times.
We are continually evaluating ways to improve the process of getting into and out of Burning Man. Some of these will require years of planning, while others can be implemented more easily. Here are some of the changes we are working on for 2012: Read more »
[Kristy Evans is a senior manager in the Gate, Perimeter and Exodus Department, where she has helped manage the task of getting people in and out of Black Rock City since 2007. The logistics of traffic, people movement, and staffing a huge department still fascinate her, and with an ever growing city there is always more work to do. She first made the trek to the Black Rock Desert in 2003 and began volunteering in 2005 with Gate. She is a member of the Burning Man Leadership Forum, and you can read the rest of her bio here.]
Exodus Traffic, 2004. Photo by Jocko Magadini
Getting participants in and out of Black Rock City is one of our greatest challenges, and we figure it’s high time to share our ongoing work on the traffic front with you. For most Burners it isn’t the most vibrant topic, except for some of us nerdy types who like to think about systems and logistics (which is probably how we found ourselves huddling around fire barrels drawing traffic scenarios in playa dust for fun).
After the 2011 event, we received more responses (through our Feedback Loop process via feedback here: feedback (at) burningman.com) about traffic and wait times than any other topic. And we are listening. Those of us in the Gate, Perimeter & Exodus Department have been reading your feedback for years and have carefully considered the many suggestions put forth by the community. Read more »
When is a bus not a bus? Photo BY-NC-ND Chris Dunphy.
It’s getting to be that time! With Burning Man getting closer and closer every day, your thoughts are probably starting to turn to the important things: Costumes! Art! Tents, shade structures, bikes, headlamps, rebar, libations and oh yes, sustenance.
It’s a lot of STUFF to pack for just one week, especially when you have to pack it all out again. But you’ll figure out a way to have it all in Black Rock City — with a little help from The Burner’s Guide to Leaving No Trace! Read more »
Why yes, there is a gospel choir. Why do you ask?
The most common question I get from people who are never going to go to Burning Man is “So … what do you DO at Burning Man?”
Which is funny, because the question I’m most frequently asked by first-timers about to go to Burning Man is “What will I do there?”
Huh. Well … it’s kinda tough to explain. You see … oh geez … how to say this … Okay: Burning Man presents you with the same number of existential choices you have in real life. Maybe more.
Does that not make sense? Maybe not. Okay, let me try explaining this the long way.
Most of us, long before we ever ended up dusty and sunburned, had heard a story about something that happened on the playa, or a tale about Burning Man’s exodus from San Francisco to the desert, or expressed a wish out loud only to be told … right or wrong … “oh yeah, Burning Man’s like that.”
These stories, whatever they are, are what keep thousands of people walking through the gates each year, and many coming back. We all know why. In the absence of traditional commerce at Burning Man, experiences … what Chicken John has called “units of interesting” … are the coin of the realm. We may be absentmindedly jealous of the guy with the biggest RV and the camp with the fresh seafood kept in a refrigeration unit that costs more than a house in Miami – but that’s something you can find anywhere. The stories of Burning Man experiences, built on 100% pure units of interesting, are what we go out into the desert to find and bring back. Read more »
Photo via BurningSky.org
Can you see the impending doom in this photo?
The diver’s fine, of course. It’s that gorgeous city behind her that is endangered. Burning Man may have flourished for 25 years running, but it’s more ephemeral than it seems. At any point, Black Rock City could cease to exist. But thanks to you, me and 50,000 people just like us, it appears year after year. And by following the Burner’s Guide to Leaving No Trace, we can keep Burning Man alive and on fire for ever.
Burning Man, as you surely know, is a Leave No Trace event. That means it’s everyone’s responsibility to pick up every piece of MOOP — from couches to cigarette butts, lost pairs of pants to abandoned glow sticks. Even if it isn’t yours, if you see it, you pick it up — that’s the way this works.
It works well. We are pretty dang good at it.
Each year, the BLM inspects our site to determine whether we’ve cleaned up after ourselves adequately. And each year, thanks to YOUR efforts and the efforts of the Playa Restoration crew that spends weeks pulling up rebar stakes, we pass. Read more »
It has been a long night.
No one is stirring in camp. It is dark and quiet. As quiet as things get, anyway. The dance still rages on in all directions, but it sounds faint now that you’re home again.
The stars have moved a lot. The wind is chilly. Your legs ache, and your eyes are heavy. Take a slug of water. A few drops spill on the dust. Take another swallow.
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