Posts in Regional Events

Austin’s Burning Flipside: Taking Leave No Trace to the Next Level

 

Everything’s bigger in Texas, including the Burning Man regional event. By working with authorities to override a long-term population cap, Burning Flipside organizers have successfully rewritten the rules!

Photo by Mark Kaplan.

Photo by Mark Kaplan.

In order to increase the event’s capacity, State regulations required Flipside organizers to provide potable water, daily trash service, trash receptacles, cups, napkins, lighting and other services. But Flipside is a Leave No Trace event based on personal accountability; participants are expected to bring in everything they need and pack it out when they leave (sound familiar?).

The vast majority of large-scale events and festivals do provide trash cans, based on the assumption that attendees are not interested in picking up after themselves. Leave No Trace events like Burning Man and Burning Flipside have a different ethos. The latter trust that community members are not only perfectly capable of cleaning up after their own wild rumpuses, but that they feel satisfied and self-reliant as a result of doing so.

We come together, build something amazing, burn it to the ground and then pick up every last cinder. It’s an achievement we’re proud of, and it’s part of what defines us as a community rather than merely an event. We do it because we respect the land and the right of others to enjoy the land once we depart.

Incorporating trash services would change the very nature of what Flipside is about and Austin Artistic Reconstruction (AAR), the organization running Flipside, wasn’t willing to subvert the community’s values just to sell more tickets.

Faced with a choice of either going against our community’s values by providing trash cans, or limiting the population, AAR did what they had to do:

They changed the rules.

Read more »

Firefly Opens Studios to Boston Area Community

No need to wait three months to dive into the art of Burning Man! Burning Man Regional Groups in more than 120 regions spanning over 20 countries are developing ways to engage local communities around the creative spirit, year-round.

Firefly Arts Collective

Firefly Arts Collective lights up Somerville Open Studios (Photo Credit: Jonathan Macleod)

Earlier this month, Firefly Arts Collective  – who organize the official New England Burning Man regional event Firefly – took part in Somerville Open Studios, one of the largest weekend-long open studio events in the United States.

Home to many Firefly artists and a growing arts community, Somerville is located just north of Boston. Read more »

May 1st, 2013  |  Filed under Afield in the World, Events/Happenings

Burning in Africa: AfrikaBurn 2013

AfrikaBurn greeters bell (photo by BettieJune)

AfrikaBurn 2013 — Burning Man’s official African regional Burn — is underway in Tankwa, South Africa. Now in its seventh year, AfrikaBurn is rightfully touted as “the spectacular result of the creative expression of a community of volunteers who, once a year, gather in the Tankwa Karoo to create a temporary city of art, theme camps, costume, music and performance!”

The event takes place May 1-6 on an expanse of remote desert in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa akin to the Black Rock Desert of Nevada (albeit a little more rocky), and its population has steadily grown since its inception … they’re expecting 8,000 participants this year. Read more »

May 2nd, 2012  |  Filed under Afield in the World, Participate!, The Ten Principles

What does living Burning Man 365/24/7 look like?

Photo By: Lanny Headrick

Photo By: Lanny Headrick

As you wander into your camp at the end of an amazing week at Burning Man, your friend turns to you and says, “I wish I could live like this all the time.”

Your immediate response is to yell, “What, are you freaking crazy?” Followed by a list of reasons from food to hygiene to exhaustion that it is not possible.  And ultimately, a seed is planted and you start to think what would a lifestyle based on your experience during that one week in the desert really look like.

Over the past 6 months I have visited 25 communities around the USA and Canada and I have found that living “like this” all year round is not only possible, it takes on a wide variety of shapes and sizes.

Read more »

March 31st, 2011  |  Filed under Events/Happenings, Participate!

Fuente, Regionals, and Getting The Gift.

Waterfall bliss at an event in Baja.

In 1998 I attended my first Burning Man.
For the next 5 years or so, I spent 11 months a year waiting, less-than-patiently, for the Burn.
Gradually I started to integrate Burning Man principles into my life and find pockets of Burning Man culture.

Now it feels like I am constantly preparing for (or cleaning up from) Burning Man-inspired brunches, festivals, or days at the beach.

In fact, last weekend I attended a festival deep in Baja Mexico called “Fuente Eterno.” (See video below) Now, it sells out in 5 minutes, so I am hesitant to hype it up. The odds are you will probably not be able to attend. But the point is there are LOTS of smaller events, regionals, and opportunities to gather with people who have been inspired by Radical Self Expression, Gifting, and the Burning Man Vibe.

Don’t know of one near you? Create it. Participants-only, baby.

I spoke with someone recently who said that after 3 years they, “had gotten all they could from Burning Man.” Sadly, they had failed to get the most important thing of all: It is about the GIVING not the GETTING. I return every year not to get my mind blown by the new Temple design (although that does happen each year), but because I want to enhance the experience for others. It is through Gifting to others’ lives, weeks, or moments that I receive more than I could ever “get” for myself.

Thanks to the growing number of large and small events worldwide, that process of gifting and receiving can go on year-round. There is a whole section of the Burning Man website for the Regional Network. Events large and small are growing (and being created) all over the world! Find one. Participate in one. Create one.

More and more people are seeing Burning Man – not as an event – but as a model for how to live: A model for how to interact with neighbors. A model for how to express yourself & encourage expression in others. And a model for how to Gift your talents to friends, your community, and the world.

Do you attend any large or small “Burner” gatherings? Please share your experiences in the comments!

Love,
Halcyon )’(


(Video reflection from last weekend’s Fuente Eterno in Baja Mexico.)

July 15th, 2010  |  Filed under Afield in the World, Events/Happenings

The FIGMENT Update

When our group got together to start FIGMENT in 2007, we never had any idea that it could ever grow this much, this fast. In 2010, our three-day NYC event had nearly 25,000 participants, and our Boston event, just in its first year, had something like 10,000 participants. It’s really amazing to see how quickly the community around FIGMENT has grown, and it’s exciting to see where it can go next.

Welcome to FIGMENT! (Image (c) 2010 NY_Man)

FIGMENT began in New York in 2007 as a way to bring three important resources together: first, Governors Island, a former Army and then Coast Guard base in New York Harbor that had just been turned over to New York City; second, the creative energy of artists in New York, often creating work without ample resources, often desperately in need of space; and third, the ethos that many of the founders of FIGMENT had learned from Burning Man, expressed in the ten principles—basically, teaching us how to work collaboratively together to make great things happen in a way that is participatory, generous, and free from commoditization.

The idea took off immediately, and, while we expected 500 people or so at our first one-day event, we had over 2,600 people, with thousands more turned away at the ferries. We haven’t stopped since. The New York event has grown exponentially each year, increasing how much art we cram onto the island’s 172 acres, growing in participation as art projects become more ambitious, growing in duration as we add increasingly successful summer-long projects every year, and growing in stability as we build a team that believes in this event and can keep it going.

Read more »

February 15th, 2010  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music), Events/Happenings

Megs Eats World 2.1: Adventures in Australia

Melbourne Mural

Boarding the 14-hour flight to Sydney, Australia, a flurry of butterflies filled my belly. Though I’d been daydreaming about this trip for some time, it only now felt real. Stepping off this plane in Australia would put me farther than ever before from my family, friends, and community in San Francisco. However, the knowledge that I’d be welcomed into a network of Burners in Australia and New Zealand made the start of my journey much less intimidating, the gap between our continents that much smaller.

Maid Marian and I had crafted a tight itinerary for our travels abroad and had a lot to accomplish in a short amount of time. Our first mission was to connect with the movers and shakers behind the upcoming OzBurn Seed 2010, Australia’s first Regional Burn that will take place in June, 2010. Over the past several months, I’d shared countless conversations and emails with Burning Man Australian Regional Contact Robin and local community organizers Phil Smart and King Richard about the work they were doing to nurture the growth of the Burning Man community in Australia. Though I knew that the work they were doing was significant, from my desk in San Francisco—and without a background in Australian culture—I had a limited frame of reference through which to understand their experiences. By visiting them in Australia and connecting with the local Burning Man community, I hoped to gain the perspective I needed to comprehend what their contributions meant to the international Burning Man Regional Network.

View from our plane over Sydney: Photo by Maid Marian
View from our plane over Sydney Photo by Maid Marian

Read more »

February 6th, 2010  |  Filed under Culture (Art & Music), Events/Happenings

FIGMENT – Call for Art!


video: Carol Binkowski

FIGMENT is an annual celebration of creative culture on Governors Island in New York Harbor. It provides an open forum for artists, helps build a creative community and fosters participatory and public art. This year it will be both in NYC and Boston.

FIGMENT submissions are open for the pavilion, minigolf, and sculpture garden!
Call for Art!

They also need members of the team, check it out!

figment description