Love them or hate them, we can all admit that social media influencers are a dime a dozen these days. Influencer culture has infiltrated Burning Man, and it’s caused some problems. Burning Man is a famously anti-capitalist event. However, the more influencers attend, the more commodified the event becomes. Burning Man veterans have complained about new influencers coming to Burning Man and making everything transactional.
The Burning Man CEO Marian Goodell even published a post on the community’s blog about the influencer problem. In the blog post, she calls out influencers who shamelessly stage photoshoots and post sponsored photos for big corporations. This is inherently against everything that Burning Man stands for, which bums out a lot of attendees. Many people fear that the prevalence of influencers will continue to lead to making Burning Man “Coachella-fied” and commercialized.
We Scream for Ice Cream
There’s nothing better after trekking through the hot, late summer desert than sweet, cold ice cream. Thankfully, anything is possible at Burning Man. Ever since 2012, a group of Burners has dedicated their camp to making ice cream for their fellow Burning Man attendees. This is no easy feat because liquid nitrogen must be hauled out to the desert yearly to make this delectable treat.
The theme camp members spent a whole year researching how to make the perfect ice cream, and they didn’t disappoint. They have flavors like Black Rock Rum Raisin and Burning Breakfast, an intriguing mixture of bacon and bourbon. The best part? The ice cream is completely free. Burners don’t even have to barter for a scoop because it’s a gift from the camp.
On Theme for Burning Man
Who doesn’t love an event with a good theme? Burners are definitely fans. Theme camps and villages are a big part of Burning Man. A theme camp is a collection of Burners who work together to create an interactive service or piece of art that is available to the Black Rock City community. Theme camps are a fun way to create a more dynamic experience for everyone at Burning Man.
Burning Man villages are a collection of at least two theme camps that work together and share resources. Villages and theme camps serve as mini towns or pit stops that Burners can stop in to enjoy everything from boozy snow cones to a handwritten letter exercise. This pirate-themed camp drew in the crowds with its larger-than-life ship, interactive buildings, and fluttering pirate flags.
El Pulpo Mecanico
Out of all the Burning Man art installations, “El Pulpo Mecanico” is one of the most famous and recognizable. This 25-foot scrap metal sculpture is of a mechanical octopus with many moving parts. Oh, and it also breathes fire. “El Pulpo Mecanico” is famous for lighting up the desert sky with its spectacular fire-breathing capabilities, often accompanied by EDM music for revelers to enjoy.
The mechanical octopus made its Burning Man debut in 2011. The kinetic sculpture was created by artist Duane Flatmo and engineer Jerry Kunkel. The two collaborated to create this terrifyingly adorable sculpture from recycled metal sourced from scrapyards near the artists’ homes. “El Pulpo” has also appeared at festivals like Electric Daisy Carnival.
Getting Around Black Rock City
A bicycle is absolutely essential for Burning Man. Black Rock City, where Burning Man is held, is about nine square miles and full of crowded avenues and wild backstreets. Walking miles in the hot Nevada sun is absolutely out of the question. So, a bicycle is the best way to get around.
You’re bound to find a sea of bicycles anywhere you look in Black Rock City. We’re not talking about any old bikes, either. Attendees bring their most durable, rugged bikes to Burning Man in order to fit the anti-capitalist, artsy vibe. In fact, the Burning Man organizers encourage attendees to decorate their bikes, express themselves, and stand out.