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JRS VOLUME #13; ISSUE #14

Burning Man Update: The Jack Rabbit Speaks
Volume 13, Issue #14
March 19, 2009

Greetings! We're happy to say that the Burning Man staff is freshly revitalized and newly inspired. Why is that? Well, we recently finished up our 3rd annual Regional Network Leadership Summit, that's why.

Nearly 100 attendees (including Regional Contacts and other leaders from local communities who were welcomed as invited guests) from across the country and the globe joined us at Burning Man Headquarters for a weekend full (and we do mean FULL) of discussion, brainstorming, collaboration, presentations, creativity, and socializing -- all about how to take their experiences with Burning Man and share them with the rest of the world all year long. The place was downright packed, and the vibe positively electric with ideas arcing across the room, and people connecting to collaborate on projects larger than the sum of their parts.

Imagine a really boring conference...only you're all talking about REALLY COOL STUFF, and everyone around you is incredibly interesting, it's actually NOT BORING. Through workshops, roundtable discussions, and a whole lot of socializing in the halls, the themes of leadership and connecting our participatory culture were explored, expounded upon, and examined. If you're curious to hear more, ask your local Regional Contact, if you have one in your area, whether or not he/she went. It was great to have a nice jolt of inspiration right at the Burnal Equinox, when the apex of our annual cycle's orbit takes us the "farthest" from the playa.

Speaking of playa, it's currently WET on the playa! Here at JRS central we get asked about playa conditions year after year, and while we offer it with a HUGE grain of salt, it does in fact bode well for the possibility of a nicely packed playa surface condition later this summer. (Mind you, we offer that tidbit with one caveat: the only constants are change, and dust at Burning Man, and you will need to embrace both to truly thrive in BRC. Might as well decide to start now, right?)

Oh, and also, did you hear? We're returning the city size back to what it was in 2007, making it just a leeetle beeeet eeeeeasier to get from Point A (aka Your Camp) to Point B (aka That Cool Thing You Are Supposed to Volunteer For/Go Check Out on The Other Side of the Playa). Thanks to everybody who gave us feedback about the city size ... see? We listen!

Are you excited yet?

Please read on for a wide variety of entertaining stuff, interesting news, and opportunities to get involved, including our annual Open House event, coming April 4. And stay tuned for the next JRS, wherein we shall be announcing this year's funded art projects ... suffice to say, they will not disappoint.

Until next time ...

-PQ
(Associate Rabbit)

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LATEST NEWS:
+ BURNING MAN'S ANNUAL OPEN HOUSE & POTLUCK BBQ
+ LATEST MEDIA COVERAGE ABOUT BURNING MAN
+ REMEMBRANCE PLAQUE FOR BURNERS LOST - NAMES BY JULY 20
+ POPAVER RUBRUM GIGANTICUM IN PHILADELPHIA
+ A BIT OF BURNING MAN IN MOSCOW. THAT WOULD BE RUSSIA.
+ HOLLIS HAWTHORNE - A STORY OF THE POWER OF COMMUNITY
+ FIRE BREATHING SURVEY

PARTICIPATE:
+ THE BURNING ROADSHOW IS ON THE MOVE - GET INVOLVED!
+ THE FLAMETHROWER SHOOTING GALLERY: YOU TOO CAN BURN THE MAN!
+ FIGMENT: CALL FOR PARTICIPATION

PHOTOS & IMAGES:
+ BURNING MAN 2008 PHOTO GALLERY FROM COURTNEY GERZYMISCH

ADMINISTERRATA:
+ Want to unsubscribe from the JRS? Srsly? OK, here's how: http://tinyurl.com/2rwqzx

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BURNING MAN'S ANNUAL OPEN HOUSE & POTLUCK BBQ

Surviving Duststorms & Downturns
Saturday, April 4th, 2009
Time: 11am to 3:30 pm
Place: BMHQ, 1900 Third Street, SF, CA
http://www.burningman.com/office.directions
Conveniently located along SF Muni's T-line

* * * GIANTS BALLPARK ALERT! * * *
Avoid the ballgame crowds on Third Street north of 16th Street! Ride your bike, take the Muni T-line, or if you must drive, stay south on 16th Street or use Highway 280, Mariposa exit.

OPEN HOUSE SCHEDULE:

BECOME A BURNING VOLUNTEER!
From 11 am to 1 pm - talk, mix & mingle with our Volunteer Coordinators and Managers. Burning Man cannot happen with out thousands of volunteers. Join the few, the proud, the freaky!

SURVIVING DUST-STORMS & DOWNTURNS
1:15-2:15 pm - A community brain-storming forum on how Burning Man WILL adapt and survive these tough economic times. The greatest resource Burning Man's possesses is the creative intellect of our community. Come on and think outside the [Dicky] Box. Sacred Cow tipping encouraged (in other words, a "brainstorm" means all ideas can be aired and absorbed - no reasonable idea will be shot down, and all reasonable ideas will be seriously considered! We want to hear from you.)

ASK THE MAN
2:30-3:30 pm - An expert staff panel to answer your burning[man] questions.

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ASK THE MAN - (ASK THE MOUSE?)
The Playa-Info-maniac Mouse (& Mini-Mouse) will be scurrying about Burning Man Headquarters during the Open House with the Man's head in her cute little paws, collecting YOUR questions for the MAN. Sounds surreal? Of course it does - it's Burning Man! A panel of Burning Man staffers will convene to answer submitted questions at the end of the day.

POTLUCK BARBEQUE BYOC (BRING YOUR OWN CUP) - You betcha! Whatcha bringin' for the grill? Who's got the potato salad?

FEE-FREE (FOE FUM) BURNING MAN TICKETS
Haven't purchased your ticket yet? Stop by and see the folks representing the BRC Box Office and buy your ticket sans online service fees and walk away with ticket in hand. CASH ONLY, please. We are also looking for folks with excellent service skills to come join the Box Office Crew.

EVOLVE - JOIN OUR JEAN POOL!
Our Earth Guardians are collecting CLEAN used blue jeans to make into MOOP* bags. The gray-water devouring Gray-B-Gone will be on display, rain or shine.
*Matter Out Of Place, commonly known as litter.

. . . and (of course) sign up for one of the Burning Man Volunteer Teams:

  • Airport
  • ARTery
  • Black Rock Arts Foundation
  • Black Rock Rangers
  • Box Office
  • Burning Man Information Radio
  • Burners Without Borders
  • Center Camp Cafe
  • Dept. of Mutant Vehicles
  • Dept. of Public Works
  • Earth Guardians
  • Emergency Services Dept.
  • Exodus, Gate & Perimeter
  • Greeters
  • Ice Sales
  • Lamp Lighters
  • Media Mecca/IP Team
  • Playa Info
  • Recycle Camp
  • Special Events
  • Technology and Web Teams

. . . all volunteer coordinators and managers will be available to answer your questions and help you get signed up for the purrfect volunteer position for you.

Drop-in childcare (fee-per-hour) will be available -- bring the kiddos and make a day of it!

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LATEST MEDIA COVERAGE ABOUT BURNING MAN

It's Burning Man in the news!

Thanks to the ministrations of two very hardorking volunteers, Keith "Flip" Privett from the Media Team, and web-teamer Paul Gutoski, Burning Man's press hits page is completely up to date. (Thank you, Keith and Paul, for all you do. We're still trying to figure out how you type with those mitten-covered hands in those frigid temperatures of, respectively, Chicago and Minneapolis, but we really are grateful.)

And ... drum roll please ... our media coverage for 2008 includes:

Coverage from:
- 10 countries (US, Australia, Argentina, Canada, China, Norway, Portugal, Switzerland, S. Africa, UK)
- on 6 continents (speak up, Antarctica!)
- in 6 languages (English, Chinese, German, Norwegian, Portugese, Spanish) with links to computer-generated English Translations from the other five.

Off-playa coverage includes:
- good deeds from BWB, BRS (earlier in the year BRAF) and those inspired by them,
- Regionals in Africa and Cyberspace, and Reno Decompression,
- Playa Art exhibiting in the 4 major US Time Zones (PT-Mangrove in Reno, MT-Cubatron in Scottsdale, CT-Dreamyourtopia in Dallas, and ET-Grotto of Destiny in Miami),
- Playa-bound art preparation from New York, Boise, Bay Area, Reno, and Vegas.

Article perspectives include: automotive, architectural, business, cinematic, culinary, environmental, philanthropic, political and religious, and earlier in 2008: IT, mathematical and parenting.

Two extended Larry Harvey interviews by the Wall Street Journal and a kitten avatar (CNET's Daniel "Greeter Dan" Terdiman in Second Life).

You too can find it all on the Burning Man website at http://tinyurl.com/38mjk5

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REMEMBRANCE PLAQUE FOR BURNERS LOST - NAMES BY JULY 20

Since 1996, an anonymous Burner has created a plaque to commemorate members of our community who have recently passed away. This tradition continues to honor people who have impacted our Burning experiences and participated in making Burning Man happen. This is a call out to you, our community, to please let us know of any Burners lost who you feel should be added to the Remembrance Plaque.

Submission of names: please DO NOT HIT REPLY to this JRS, but rather send just their name, exactly as you would like to see it appear, to:remembrance (at) burningman (dot) com

Submissions need to be received by July 20th to be included on this year's plaque.

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POPAVER RUBRUM GIGANTICUM IN PHILADELPHIA

No, that is not a venereal disease. Popaver Rubrum Giganticum (we challenge you to say that five times fast. Hell, ONE time fast.) was a gorgeous art installation on playa in 2008 ... the field of 10' tall majestic red poppies ... remember those? Anyway, they were gorgeous and majestic, trust us. See? http://tinyurl.com/dko6zy Gary Miller, the artist, writes (tear-jerkingly so, we have to admit) of his first Burning Man experience, and having his poppies installed in Philadelphia, only appropriately repurposed. Read on, as he writes to Crimson Rose, Burning Man's Art Director:

"You probably don't remember learning from me during our honorarium conference call with Lady Bee that I had never been to Burning Man. You were both very concerned that I was not prepared for what I was about to undertake but I confidently assured you that I was. I wasn't. But with the help from all the people at the Artery and the generosity and support from just about everyone else, I became a part of what has to be the most encyclopedic, all-embracing celebration of everything human ever assembled. People told me Burning Man would be a life-changing experience. It was. I won't bother you with all that happened or how I am changed as I'm sure that my experience wasn't singular. I continue to reflect on what I learned there and continue to be inspired by the creative ardor that, like the dust, permeated everything and everyone.

And as promised in my funding proposal for Burning Man, the poppies are being recycled into an educational project. This April, using the materials from the poppies, a Philadelphia city school will install their own field of flowers, With an Artist-In-Residence grant from the William Penn Foundation and scientific assistance and support from the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, I am working with children in grades K through 8th to create their own varieties of flowers based on native species found in eastern Pennsylvania. I'll send along some photos when they're completed."

And that, my friends? Is rad.

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A BIT OF BURNING MAN IN MOSCOW. THAT WOULD BE RUSSIA.

Dude. Someone did a burn in Russia, half way around the world, on the Burnal Equinox, half way between burns. Seriously. This is beautiful. Check it out:

http://community.livejournal.com/burning_man/790264.html

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HOLLIS HAWTHORNE - A STORY OF THE POWER OF COMMUNITY

Normally, it's the Rabbit's policy to not publish requests for personal fundraisers, no matter how dire. But this one is more than any request for donations ... this is a story of an absolutely incredible international expression of community that needs to be shared - one with a very inspiring resolution.

On February 25th our friend, DPW & Gate crew member, dancer, and SF-based creator and collaborator Hollis Hawthorne suffered a brain stem injury as a result of a motorcycle accident in India (and yes, wise Hollis was wearing a helmet)... she remained there for weeks, in a coma, far from home.

Soon after the accident, as word spread through her community, an international grass roots effort commenced, driven by her friends and family, to raise $200,000. That was the amount it would take to bring her back via an air ambulance to the United States, where she could get the care she desperately needs, and to help pay for her ongoing treatment. Stanford Medical Center had generously offered to take her case pro bono - and now the challenge was to get her there.

Hollis's story made the national news in India (http://tinyurl.com/cp8lma) and here in San Francisco (http://tinyurl.com/cbud6q) - even the local news in her Tennesee home town. And help began to pour in. Through the power of her networked and massively cross-pollenated communities, including many of her friends from Burning Man, donations began to flow in from around the world, from friends, family, friends of friends and even total strangers. Fundraising events thrown in New York City, Portland, Atlanta, San Francisco, Oakland, and Gerlach, Nevada helped friends gather to celebrate Hollis and raise more money. Even a hat passed at the Regionals Summit netted almost $400 from 100 people who had never even met this fellow Burner.

People donated art to silent auctions, services to be sold, valuable items to be raffled, performances to be watched, technical services, venues to hold events ... and people left and right have been offering the gift of their time and talents. In a matter of a couple weeks, even in the current economic climate, this effort managed to raise over $95,000. Think about that number -- it's really simply incredible.

And the best news: Hollis is now BACK in the United States, and is settling in to her room at Stanford Medical Center, where her recovery can really get going. It's going to be a long road, but now, she will undertake that journey at one of the world's top hospitals, attended by family who now won't have to struggle to subsist in a foreign land, and with visits and support from the hundreds of friends who now surround her with the love and care that she will need to pull her through.

This experience has been a true testament to the power of community, and the connection between communities ... and it's made the Rabbits more than damp-eyed to watch the outpouring, and to feel how truly connected we all are when it all goes down. Even if we didn't know and love Hollis already, we'd know her by the response that she's inspired - and the company that she apparently has kept, who know how to band together to help when times are tough.

You can learn more about Hollis, and track the progress of this effort and her recovery at http://friendsofhollis.com ... and while you're there, if you're moved to make a donation to help defray her considerable medical costs and the loan that was made to bring her home, it would indeed be welcomed.

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FIRE BREATHING SURVEY

OK, this is admittedly a weird one. But we're nothing if not weird. And fire breathers, all of us. Yeah we are. Didn't you get the memo? Actually, we had a crew on playa a couple years ago trying for the world's record for the largest number of people simultaneously breathing fire. Seriously, we did. You missed it. It was cool. But then, it's easy to feel like you missed everything on playa, isn't it, no matter how much stuff you do? OK, on to this kinda weird, albeit strangely appropriate request:

"A couple months ago, a Boston area man entered the hospital with burns from learning fire breathing. Unfortunate for him, but the accident may lead to some good. The attending surgeon has taken an interest in fire breathers and has been working with NAFAA to produce some clear information regarding fire breathing and the various fire arts. We ask that you support this effort in any way you can, so that we can benefit from the results of actual, scientific research in our area. The first step is a survey for fire breathers. If you have breathed fire in any capacity, you are encouraged to fill it out. If you have not, please forward to any fire breathers you may know. Here's the link:

http://tinyurl.com/ajlonb

All data will go directly to research, it is voluntary, and completely anonymous. Please forward to all fire breathers."

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THE BURNING ROADSHOW IS ON THE MOVE - GET INVOLVED!

OK, so these folks created an opera. About Burning Man. Yeah, that's what we said too when they first brought us the idea: "What?... there's no WAY you can hope to pull this off, describing the indescribable ... in an OPERA of all things. Please." Well, we sent out our most cynical, jaded scouts to watch the show when it premiered. And, well, we were astounded when those highly cynical, hard-to-please emissaries were completely blown away by what they saw. This show? Is awesome. Funny, intelligent, poignant, thoughtful, and thoroughly representative of our little shindig in the desert. OK, so lucky for you, they're taking it on the road. And not only that, but you can get involved, too! Dana tells you how:

"In January, San Francisco’s Stage Werx Theater hosted a sold-out run of "How to Survive the Apocalypse: A Burning Opera." Though we were presenting a humble workshop performance with no budget, the event was wildly successful, with Burning Man virgins and grizzled old timers registering great enthusiasm. Steve Jones of the Bay Guardian said the show "is both engrossing musical theater in its own right and a piece of art that truly captures the feel of the event and the Zeitgeist of its attendees." Now we are planning a Fall Tour of the West Coast in September and October, with a more ambitious national roadshow on the horizon of 2010. To get more information about the show and our mission, check out http://www.burningopera.com

Currently, we are in negotiations with Teatro Zinzanni to use their gorgeous and historic Spiegeltents in San Francisco and Seattle as anchors for our fall tour. Because we would play the Zinzanni tents on Monday through Wednesday, the weekends would remain open, allowing us to present the show at other West Coast locations.

The current plan is to begin some rehearsals and design in the Bay Area in late August, and to have a small presence in Black Rock City, where we will shoot some video and connect with new performers and collaborators. The main block of rehearsals would begin after Burning Man in San Francisco, where the show would open on Sept 22 & 23. We are currently looking for an appropriate venue between SF and Seattle for the weekend of 9/25 & 26. The show would then run at Zinzanni in Seattle 9/29 & 30. We hopefully will find another 'midway' venue 10/2&3, and then close our run in SF 10/5,6& 7. Finally, we aim to travel to LA 10/9& 10. Are you in the North Bay? Oregon? LA? We want to talk to YOU!

*NOW!*

We're assembling the production staff to begin working on this tour NOW. During the next month, we will be holding auditions and meetings with interested collaborators (either to join the tour or to help us bring it to your city) in the following places:

SF March 27th - auditions by appointment in the afternoon; production mtg 6-8pm; meet & greet/party 8-?? @ Mission Control, 2519 Mission St., SF

NYC April 5th - auditions by appointment in the afternoon; meet & greet/cocktails 5-7pm; location TBA

Washington DC April 8th - meet & greet/cocktails evening; exact time and location TBA

We're looking for volunteers in each location to help run these events, as well as to host fundraising events throughout the summer.

*PRODUCTION TEAM:*

To take this project to the next level, we need to create a strong core Production Team ASAP. We're looking to fill key roles within the next few weeks, so that we can have everyone lined up for our first production meeting in SF on March 27. For a list of all roles and details, please see:

http://www.burningopera.com/production_team.htm

*CAST & CREW:*

As this is a Burning Man-style show, the stars will help with the setup and the roadies will be onstage. We love double, triple, and quadruple threats. We especially love riveting singers and dancers that can also play a marching band instrument and have a great attitude while working hard behind the scenes—or perhaps a professional gaffer who really loves to sing! We are reopening all roles and understudies and creating new characters for the new version of the show. For more details of the roles see:

http://www.burningopera.com/cast_of_characters.htm

We are also excited to collaborate with some of the many spectacular artists, ensembles, and DJs that have been so essential to the Burning Man experience, either as 'guest stars' or as separate acts before or after the show. Please send resumes, photos, videos, links to production (at) burningopera (dot) com.

*TO OFFER IDEAS, SUGGESTIONS, ASSISTANCE:* Please contact Executive Producer Dana Harrison at dana (at) burningopera (dot) com

*TO SEE WHAT WE'RE UP TO:*

Sign up for our mailing list from the website: http://www.burningopera.com
Read our blog: http://h2sta.wordpress.com/
Become a fan of our Facebook page: http://tinyurl.com/bzdfj6

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THE FLAMETHROWER SHOOTING GALLERY: YOU TOO CAN BURN THE MAN!

The Flamethrower Shooting Gallery is looking some rockin' additions to our crew for 2009.

Last year we enabled over 200 participants to shoot flamethrowers and this year we'd like to double that, and we need a kick-ass crew to make it happen. We are looking for folks who are super responsible when playing with fire - we use liquid fuel and this ain't no joke, but it sure is fun. You can learn more about the FSG at:

http://www.matisse.net/flamethrower/

and read about the crew roles at:

http://www.matisse.net/flamethrower/participate.html

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FIGMENT: CALL FOR PARTICIPATION

The folks who produce "FIGMENT" out there in New York are seriously doing some incredible stuff. They came and gave a talk at our recent Regional Leadership Summit about their project, and its evolution over the years, and this Rabbit's here to tell ya, it was very, very inspiring. They started small, and have grown to an impressive scale, offering a free, interactive art experience to New Yorkers. Theirs is truly a model to be emulated. Not That Dave, one of the organizers, writes in with a call for participants. Thank you for all you do, Dave (and Rae, too!) ... and with that, we'll hand it over to him:

"FIGMENT is looking for artists, performers, sculptors, musicians, dancers, builders, bringers, and creative people of all types! Submissions are now open! Your art can be anything you can imagine… anything that you can create and bring to engage other participants.

FIGMENT is a free, annual celebration of participatory art and culture where everything is possible. As America and New York come to grips with economic recession, a free participatory arts event is more important than ever.

The 2009 event will be held from June 12 — 14th on Governors Island, in New York Harbor, and will also be hosting two season-long projects on the island: an interactive sculpture exhibit and an artistic mini-golf course.

To submit your project, or get the answers to your burning questions, please visit http://figmentnyc.org/participate."

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BURNING MAN 2008 PHOTO GALLERY FROM COURTNEY GERZYMISCH

Courtney Gerzymisch has submitted to us a gorgeous collection of photos from Burning Man 2008. This is our first time seeing Courtney's shots, and she's clearly a photographer of great talent. Enjoy:

http://gerzy.com/burningman08/

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{====================================================} ==============ADMIN ON AND OFF THE JRS============== {====================================================}

Email us or questions (at) burningman (dot) com any time with questions. Email jackrabbitspeaks (at) burningman (dot) com by 11:59 PM PST on Sunday for post requests. (We don't post all requests, however.) Please type "POST REQUEST" in your subject line to make it past the SPAM.

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If you are having trouble, troubleshoot at http://tinyurl.com/2rwqzx

Soundtrack for this JRS: Mates of State, Jurassic 5, Andrew Bird, Beck

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