Moop Map 2015: This is what participation looks like


SHOUT OUT to Playa Mike, who posted this inspiring album from Burn Night 2015. Mike says:

Every year on Burn Night my friends and I walk around the playa collecting as much MOOP as we can find and attach it to a caution tape tail of mine.





That’s the spirit, Playa Mike (and crew). You made mooping fun. Thank you for leaving no trace, and for picking up more than you dropped. The Playa Restoration crew salutes you!

I’d like to take this moment to remind us all of what moop is [it’s Matter Out Of Place] and why we pick it up [because Burning Man is a Leave No Trace event, and keeping that incredible commitment requires everyone’s participation].

Here’s a nice summary of it, from this year’s Survival Guide:

Burning Man is the largest Leave No Trace (LNT) event in the world — LNT is one of our core principles — it is up to all of us to remove all Matter Out of Place (MOOP) from Black Rock City. There is no garbage collection service in BRC — we are all responsible for properly removing all trash. Everything you bring might become trash: tent stakes, bottle caps, ashes, wood debris, orange peels, cigarette butts, pistachio shells, rope fibers, sequins —even abandoned bikes. According to our permit with the BLM, we have a very short window of time to restore the playa to its original condition. We can only satisfy BLM stipulations and pass inspection if ALL citizens share in the responsibility to line-sweep their camps and the city.

No matter how big and crazy our temporary city gets, it’s always going to be a community. And it’s always going to attract awesome people who find their own ways to participate. Including mooping their way through BRC with a tail made of caution tape.

Did YOU pick up moop in a creative, photogenic way this year? Tweet me your photos @jhfearless. I’ll totally RT.

And hey guys, I’ve seen Day One of the Moop Map results and I can say for sure that you’re going to see them too, very soon. Tomorrow maybe?

Volunteer for the Burn Garden wood donation team


From DA, Playa Restoration Manager:


Located at 3, 6, and 9, near Promenade and Esplanade, the Burn Gardens are a cluster of Burn Platforms used for burning wood during the Burning Man Event. As the event draws to a close, the burning of wood at the Burn Gardens increases dramatically due to participants eager to burn their excess wood. The main challenge is dealing with participants who try to overstack the burn platforms, as well as burn inappropriate materials such as trash, compost, and recycling.

Starting Sunday morning 9/1/13 at 9am The Burn Garden Wood Donation Team will make sure that participants do not overstack the burn platforms or burn inappropriate materials. Burning Man is proud to be the largest practicing Leave No Trace Event in the world and participants need to take their trash, recycling, and compost with them.

Additionally, the team will facilitate the collection of Wood Donations where participants can donate good quality, useable lumber. The donors will be doing most of the heavy lifting, you just need to direct them.

3-person team per Burn Garden
2-hour shifts



Thank you! See you in the dust!
For any issues with Shiftboard Sign Ups contact:

Theme Camp Dues & Don’ts

The concept of a Theme Camp can be bewildering to someone who has never been to Burning Man. Deciding if you want to join a camp, start a camp, or go solo can be a tough decision. Some camps are open to anyone, others are close-knit families. Some are based on sacred service, others pour drinks, others blow minds. All give gifts to Black Rock City… and the requirements to be a part of each camp are unique.

My camp is not an open camp. Everyone has connected either online or on previous adventures. We have strict participation requirements that include: sharing a “who I really am” essay, attending meetings in person or via webcam, Leave No Trace shifts, Water Bar shifts, set-up & break down commitments, & financial contribution in the form of dues.

Occasionally I have people ask, “If I pay dues, what do I get?”


I spent a few minutes discussing the topic of “Theme Camp Dues.”

Announcing Burner Profiles

Black Rock City from afar on Burn night. Photo by Cameron Grant

Burning Man is excited to announce the launch of Burner Profiles, a system to help facilitate the flow of information we regularly collect from Burning Man participants for ticket sales, theme camp and art installation registration, mutant vehicle applications, What Where When submissions, and other things that people do and create for Black Rock City.

Initially, the Burner Profile will be used as part of the pre-registration process for ticket sales to Burning Man 2013. To create your profile and pre-register for access to ticket sales, the only information you’re required to provide is your first name, last name, email address, and mailing address. That’s it … the same info required whenever you buy Burning Man tickets. (more…)

Opera de la Playa

[Jennifer Raiser is an avid long-time Burner, Burning Man Project board member, theme camp leader, and Black Rock Ranger. Her writing has appeared in the Huffington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Nob Hill Gazette and most often for her publication, SFWire.]

 “How was Burning Man?” they inquire as I ascend the shallow red-carpeted stairs leading up to the Opera House. It is five days after Exodus, and I am reluctantly back in San Francisco, Center Camp of the default domain. I am here to mark the festive highlight of another tribe, the ninetieth annual Opening Night at the Opera. To some, this happy occasion commands the same kind of importance that we associate with Burn night. Tonight’s task is to write about the grand gesture of opera and the people who are its patrons. I am charged with distilling and interpreting the evening into an article to be read by those who attend, and those who do not. The dual role as enthusiast and observer is familiar. On playa, I am a passionate participant, a Ranger, a theme camp leader, a volunteer and an author; here, I am a friendly alien who comes from that arid planet near Gerlach and happens to pen a social column.

Acquaintances here are polite and prodding about the desert. They indulgently inquire about Burning Man in the same way you might bring up a shared alma mater, or a mutual love of licorice, knowing it is a certain conversation starter. Some truly want to know, some want me to know that they know, or think they know, about my annual retreat to my happiest (and saddest, and most demanding) place on earth. I try to disarm their suspicion with the comparisons between tonight and the burning of the Man. In both places, I remind them, like-minded spirits gather to share a communal dinner, enthusiastic dancing, and well-stocked bars openly coursing with goodwill. We are corseted and costumed in ensembles carefully curated for the occasion.  We mark this artistic triumph with the biggest party of the year. (more…)

Who Works the Gate? Great People! Maybe You?

The folks working the Gate are great people … and you might not realize this but they’re ALL volunteers. And they work HARD. Take a moment to learn more about this amazing crew, and you might just find that volunteering for the Gate is right for you!

This great video (thanks to the LOVE project) highlights the work of some of the volunteers who make the gate run. We’ve also got the transcript of a nice interview with Shimmer, an Exodus Pulsing volunteer working the job. Finally, you can learn the nuts and bolts of how the Gate works in our Gate FAQ. If you’re interested in volunteering with this hardy crew, visit our Gate participation page or visit the V-Spot on playa, in Center Camp next to Playa Info.

(WARNING: Volunteering may lead to meeting really incredible people and developing an amazing sense of accomplishment and belonging by helping to make BRC possible. You have been warned!)

Our LOVE crew showed up Monday of Labor Day, 2011, and talked to Shimmer at the last Pulsing spot. Here is what she said made her volunteer experience tick: (more…)

Why The Nose?

We came across Tex Allen and his awesome calling-cum-project through the magic of the interwebs, and we tracked him down to give us the inside scoop on the nose. Cuz we love the nose. Here’s Tex:


It’s hard to explain exactly WHY the Nose and I’m not saying that as an artistic redirect, you know, to add MYSTERY. The truth is, the Nose just happened one day. Overnight, I just started wearing it out in public and three days later, it HAD me. My YES, the one thing that was SO easy to do and not only made ME happy, but transformed people around me with joy. Real joy. Let me say that when you’re presented with your YES, it’s not an easy handshake. The best analogy I can think of right now is having a floodlight flipped on, just above your head, in a dark room, while you were sleeping and someone pulled the covers off you. Then 5 seconds later, you find yourself sitting in a chair across from Morpheus, in the Matrix, chatting about Why? you wear a clown nose in public. 90% of the time. Yeah, that’s kinda how it felt then AND now. (more…)

We Are All Magic!

I have a friend named Party Radar and I have known her for over 10 years in the Burning Man community. We have been on volunteer teams together, I have seen her dance on a bar (one of those things you see in movies but don’t really ever expect to see real people doing unless they are getting paid), and she sometimes lives in the world as a bunny. She sent me a little story the other day and asked if there were a way to get it posted on the Burning Blog. Well, who can say no to a bunny.

Once when I was at Burning Man I was working at my job at Volunteer Resources. This is when it was still behind Center Camp. This older gentleman comes up. He looked like this kind of nutty engineering type guy. He was wearing a plain white t-shirt that was horribly unfancy so I decided to help him. I took my sparkly t-shirt paint and wrote “Kiss Me” on his shirt. I told him that now not only does he look a lot better but now people will want to kiss him. He said something like ‘Yeah, now all I have to do is find someone to kiss me’, as if that would NEVER happen.  No sooner had those words passed his lips but some sassy little lady around his age turned to her right and said “I’ll kiss you” and she planted one right on him (a good one too) then they took off together. It was MAGIC.