Hey all, I appreciate the commentary.
And, the thread wasn't down for a day, it was down for about 3 hours while we wrangled with things behind the scenes.
So, I wanted to give a little more information on the post from Dr. Nome, and to let you know that the post has been "retracted" (as he asked it to be posted in several areas and on lists) but in the interest of information flow we are leaving this conversation here on the e-playa.
The NOME camp provided support infrastructure for the Red Nose District for several years (I don't know how many 2 or 3 I think). They own extensive kitchen equipment, 500 gal water and grey water tanks, a large sturdy tent and related chill space items. They volunteered their skills to support a HUGE camp of clowns, performers and acrobats. The team effort wanted to continue after the Red Nose District (BIG HUGE circus tent with 200 camp members) disbanded.
In 2009 Dr. Nome offered his camp and crew to whatever theme camp might need their support. Late in the game that season there were no takers and the organization decided to take him up on the offer and create a special dinner at the Fly Hot Spring to let board members of Black Rock Arts Foundation, Black Rock Solar and other affiliated groups and supporters know of our hopes and plans for the future of Burning Man, new office needs, opportunity to purchase Fly Hot Springs and a possible new non-profit called the Burning Man Project.
The crew that affiliates themselves with the NOME are a tight, close-knit group of friends and many of them work in the hospitality field. They made magic happen with basically no money at all and created a magic dinner party in 2009. You've seen the photos, that was their creation 100% designed and enabled and poetically gifted by them.
For 2010 the Nome said, "HEY, if you guys need us again let us know!" We deliberated, and considering that we're now in the final stages of determining if we can buy a building or just keep renting, sorting out the mission for our new non profit, and considering some changes in the LLC it seemed like having a gathering on site and in Black Rock City would again be the most convenient way to get some of our uber-supporters, board members from various non-profits and Executive Committee staff members in the room together at one time. In this case it's a wind-blow tent. ;-)
Burning Man's working staff have access to a commissary as long as one works. The organization pays to feed the working staff and long-shift volunteers through out the event production process. However, since the NOME tent and special dining facility take days to erect and take down and placing it near First Camp made tons of sense they also offered as long as they'd be making meals for their camp they'd be interested in making meals for their neighbors also if there was room.
The NOME is donating their time and infrastructure to the Burning Man culture. Ultimately, the organization is at an important cross roads as we work to connect ourselves and our community together as we look forward to morphing our LLC into a non-profit. We're going to need the support and guidance of advisors that are standing by and are most readily available on the playa. So, it seems a dinner once again would make sense. The fact the NOME wants to keep the kitchen going is something they've offered and for which the staff in the area will contribute their own money to if they choose to opt-into the kitchen.
Dr. Nome wanted to get in front of any shortage of volunteers he might have and was innocently asking for help for his camp mates as they engage in their gift. Unfortunately, the tone of the email was not what anyone in First Camp would have written and made many of us uncomfortable. Dr. Nome and members of his camp called immediately and apologized once it was clear to them the post caused a stir.
They're all golden-hearted people who love to cook and make drinks and entertain. Each year they've found a camp or group of people for whom they like to give of their energy. First Camp and the camps in the area are grateful that the NOME is creating a chill space that we can grab a cat nap on a couch from time to time and we go from meeting to meeting. They even promise to throw ice cold water upon us to wake us up if we snore for too long.
We're all in this together, there's no graft and corruption going on, just an over eager "volunteer wrangler" from a camp trying to do good things amongst a city of 50,000 people all also doing magnificent things together. We're all collaborating to take care of each other and change the world.
Please forgive and let's get out into that dry lake bed and eat some playa dust. It's a condiment, you know!
Marian Goodell (aka: Maid Marian, Jack Rabbit, Meow)