BLACK ROCK CITY YEAR ROUND
by Marian Goodell, Director of Business, Communications and DPW
A reporter asked me recently if Burning Man was getting away from its "subculture roots." It was a funny remark coming from someone who clearly had no idea what happens in the desert at Burning Man, or why we're there. Most participants leave Black Rock City hoping to extend their experience and impatiently wait to return the following year. Many people find their interests and behavior change after the event. It's hard not to want such stimulation and creativity to continue after so connective an experience.
It is really only recently that I've begun to realize what "culture" actually is. It gradually dawned on me that many things we do before and after the event are a part of Burning Man's culture. Burning Man is not a select club or a clique or a closed subculture. It is a kind of tapestry, an ever-widening network of actions and relationships extending far beyond the place called Black Rock City. As a result, many of us have gained a way of looking at life that is similar. Regardless if Burning Man has changed our lives, we share certain values in common. Now it's time to begin to communicate as members of this global community.
It's not infrequent that someone emails us, or a reporter asks, whether the intent of Burning Man is to be an actual year-round city in the desert. The question is natural, but always makes me laugh. We can live our lives more expressively without residing in Black Rock City. Whenever we connect and interact with one another we make this happen.
When the members of the 2000 web team arrived at a consensus about how to reorganize this web site, one of the most difficult areas to name was this one. This is a place where you can leave information for others and interact with other participants. We have decided to call it "Black Rock City Year-Round." Here you will discover like-minded events, a curated writer's forum, stories and photographs from other participants, and a list of business that support or do business with Burning Man participants. Most importantly, this is a place where we can find one another. We think this is a section that will house so much dynamic information that it will be worth many return visits.
What you see now is the initial group of links and information that we think belong here. The snazziest addition to this web site is the Image Gallery: an area where you can add your own images, and search for images by year, subject or photographer (see the FAQ). Please check the credit page of the Image Gallery for the names of the long-suffering programmer and team members that did this work more than a year ago. They've patiently waited for its debut and deserve congratulations.
The single ultimate list of Burning Man web sites is Dave Gross's Burning Man Web List. There are web sites on this list that talk about the 1992 event! There are also several areas where you can add links to share with others: Photography Links, Journals and Essays, Artists, Musicians, Groups and Organizations, and Related Businesses. We hope this will morph into an online writer's forum or zine of some kind.
You can reach regional contacts, staff and volunteers in the Burning Man organization under Contacts. Or add your name to the email announcement list, Jack Rabbit Speaks (these periodic newsletters are not archived anywhere on this site -- you need to be "on the bus" to get the info). And, if you are planning an event, leave your listing in the Events Calendar. Let us know what kind of event you are creating for others. The Calendar is found in the Special Events section along with information on the Flambé Lounge.
Last but not least is the Bulletin Board area affectionately called the E-Playa. You'll notice it's also received a design face-lift, and old posts have been removed and archived. We have expanded our all-volunteer web team, and hope to keep this area a more current and more useful resource for all of you.
This area is in development, and we hope to develop it into an interesting and dynamic year-round resource for Burning Man. Let us know what you'd like to see, and if you would like to help make this happen.
Burning Man is truly something that can happen year-round. It's like a deep artesian well with channels flowing out from it. It is a movable feast that might happen anywhere. Black Rock City is you.