Kids & Teenagers at Burning Man

Questions, answers, tips & tricks for newbies and veterans alike

Kids at Burning Man?

Yes
303
58%
No
219
42%
 
Total votes : 522

Postby sissylala29 » Thu Sep 23, 2004 5:34 am

Rob the Wop wrote:Nevada LEOs and BLM have become more involved in 'morality issues' as the years pass. So the idea of 'leave us well enough alone' is moot. It's increasing, and will continue to do so. I lived in Pahrump for a bit- I know from first hand experience the mentality that prevails in rural Nevada.

Trust me, I'm not saying its a good thing- its just a fact of life. Yelling at a truck barreling down on you while you're in a street feels good, but accomplishes nothing.

Either BM will change in the future to accomodate kids (once a fruitcake politician makes BM 'their bitch') or kids will become excluded. Or Nevada LEOs will back off, but from knowing Nevada LEOs- this ain't going to happen.


Hey Rob, first off, I want to say that you had me rollin in the "How do you explain Burning Man to people...." thread. You are TFF.
Having been born and raised in Nevada, I have not seen a change in the way Nevada LEO's (or Nevadans in general) view or handle morality issues.
And not all rural Nevadans are judgemental, ignorant, holy rollin', bible thumping hicks. Can I prove it you may ask?? Yep, sure can. We have a club for those that aren't. We meet every other Wednesday if you'd like to come. Meetings are in the phone booth on Maine St, right across from the 5 & dime. lol
Seriously tho, in another post, you said you lived in Pahrump for a bit. Pahrump is not a good example of rural Nevada. I had a friend that grew up there while I grew up in a town of approx the same size not far from Reno. The two towns seem worlds apart. The Morman, errrrrrrr moral majority of pahrump has too much power for the towns good.
Just had to defend my fellow Nevadans, deserved or not.
Let's just hope that 'fruitcake politician' theory never happens or the issue of kids would be just the beginning. And not because of Nevada politics, just the nature of politicians in general, once they smell a juicy subject that will get votes, they're not likely to stop til they've sucked all they can from it.
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Postby Playa Face » Mon Oct 04, 2004 7:10 pm

I have a idea for the child/adult debate for burning man.

First and foremost children at burning man bring a certain innocense to the city. At least for me. They kinda take the edge off so to speak. But also there is the fact that certain people feel "wierd" around kids, opposed, or even terrified around them. Well maybe the BMORG should establish a "redlight" district and make sure they mare it well. I was part of a "adult" camp and children were coming in and out of our camp with thier parents. It is up to the parents to keep an eye out for thier children. It does take a village to raise a child, but not if thier parents complain about it.
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Postby Playa Face » Mon Oct 04, 2004 7:19 pm

I have a idea for the child/adult debate for burning man.

First and foremost children at burning man bring a certain innocense to the city. At least for me. They kinda take the edge off so to speak. But also there is the fact that certain people feel "wierd" around kids, opposed, or even terrified around them. Well maybe the BMORG should establish a "redlight" district and make sure they mare it well. I was part of a "adult" camp and children were coming in and out of our camp with thier parents. It is up to the parents to keep an eye out for thier children. It does take a village to raise a child, but not if thier parents complain about it.
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Postby Silver 2 » Mon Oct 04, 2004 8:01 pm

Here is the FAQ for people with younger children at PDF. I think it would work at Burning Man; that is, if people paid attention. All cudos to Keith. Note: I have altered or truncated the given names.

Please note that in this FAQ, parent refers to anyone legally and, more importantly, emotionally responsible for the health, well-being, and upbringing of a child, whether a genetic parent-child relationship exists or not. From the standpoint of the law, and of responsibility, a child is anyone under the age of 18. However, parents of children under age 12 are the primary target audience for this FAQ. There is a seperate FAQ page for parents of older children.

Can I bring along my little one?

Children are allowed at Playa del Fuego; however, this is NOT a child-oriented event. You are your child's parent, no one else. We don't know your standards for what you do or don't want your child to see, so we can't tell you that a Burn is or isn't the place for your little ball of energy. If you have been to previous Playa del Fuego Burns, or to Burning Man, you have some idea of the sort of things to which your child could be exposed. If not, it may be a good idea to come alone for your first burn, rather than pay for a non-refundable ticket and then leave halfway through when junior asks "Mommy, what's a candy-flip?" Additionally, you can ask parents who have brought their children to past Burns what the experience was like for them. Keith, Steph, and Dave are available for this.

One VERY important thing to remember is that YOU will be held responsible if your child enters ANY of the VVMC's sacred areas. If your child is allowed to enter the off limits areas, which are clearly marked and rather difficult to get into by accident, it is guaranteed that you will be ejected from the event immediately. Reasonable supervision of your child should be sufficient to prevent this from being a problem.

Will there be kiddie-focused events there?

Only if you make it happen. As with everything else at a No Spectators event, that's up to you. There is no Kids' Camp, nor are there activities specifically designed for children, unless YOU want them and make them happen.

Will my kids be safe? You aren't all biker pedophiles, are you?

One of the central tenets of our philosophy is radical personal responsibility. Plenty of folks at the Burns love kids, (although some might say they love them best deep fried) and we've never had any safety problems in the past. But there are going to be lots of fires at various times during the weekend, and there are several acres of land and forest in which an unsupervised child could get lost. Keeping your child safe is your responsibility. Again, if you've never been to a Burn, it may be best to come alone to your first so that you can know what you're getting into.

Can I leave my kids in my tent at night while I whoop it up with y'all till sunrise?

This is another question that you must answer for yourself. How would your child react to waking up in a strange place alone? Would he go wandering off in search of the bathroom and risk getting lost? Would she know you were right over there with the people in the cool costumes? Do you feel comfortable leaving your child alone in your tent unsupervised? Because the only supervision your child will receive during the weekend is that which you provide.

Is there babysitting?

Only if you make it happen. There will probably be wonderful people at the event who would be happy to keep an eye on your little bundle of energy while you attend to something, but Day Care Camp does not exist. If you think it should, make it.

Is there a kids' menu?

Only if you make it happen.

What do you mean, all kids must be on leashes?

Just making sure you're still reading this.

I hear certain things happen at Burning Man that I don't want my child to see. Will they happen here?

Because each event is a unique product of the vision and energy of the community, it's impossible to say what will or won't happen at a Burn. If you're worried your child will see something you don't want her to see, you'd be safest assuming she will see it if she comes, and act accordingly.

Will there be changing stations?

Only if you make it happen.

My kid is scared of "Y". Can you guarantee that no one will do this?

Nope. Again, Radical Personal Responsibility is the order of the day here.

I'm not sure my kids will like it if there aren't Disney movies, Oreos, and gumdrops; will these be provided?

Say it with me: Only if you make it happen.

If we come, and then we have to leave Friday night because my kids don't like it, can we get a refund?

Ticket sales are non-refundable. If you aren't willing to risk having to leave early, it would probably be better if you came alone.

My 14-year old kid wants to learn to spin fire cuz it looks cool. He's pretty coordinated; can he take lessons?

Your child is your responsibility, so it's between you, him, and the person you find who is willing to teach him.

I'm a single parent, and my child spends some weekends with my ex. The Burn is being held on my ex's weekend, but sometimes that gets changed at the last minute. What if I plan to come alone, but on Friday afternoon I find out that I'll be bringing my child? Can he get in free anyway?

All children's tickets obtained at the door will cost $40.00. If you think there is ANY chance that your child will come along, order a ticket for her when you order one for yourself. If it turns out that you come alone, no problem.
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Postby Silver 2 » Mon Oct 04, 2004 8:46 pm

And here is the FAQ for people with older children at PDF:

Your 18 year old has started talking about going to these "Burns", and you're not sure what to make of it. Is he going to arsonist's school? Will she come home only to hang around in airports handing out religious flyers? You wouldn't be much of a parent if you weren't concerned for your son or daughter's well being. This page is for you. The questions and answers are based on correspondence with a self-described over-protective parent.

First, a note about me, the author of this FAQ page. My name is Keith, and I'm what we call a Playa del Fuego Ranger. The PDF Rangers contribute to the event by looking out for the safety and well being of participants. We include people trained in emergency medicine as EMT's or physicians, firefighting, and conflict resolution. I'm also the father and custodial parent of a seven year old, and I am quite comfortable bringing him to Playa del Fuego events.

Before I begin, I'm going to try to explain as well as I can what a burn is, because parents sometimes worry that burns are simply drug fueled raves or some such. They aren't. I'm 32 years old, I live in the suburbs with my seven year old son, and I'm a devout Christian. I don't think I'd exactly fit in at a rave. A burn is basically a group of people who get together to create an atmosphere where we can create and celebrate different types of art, even if we aren't all particularly talented artists. Much of the way we do things is determined by what makes this work well. We are very tolerant and accepting, but we have a few guidelines by which we work.

a) No spectators. This means that everyone who comes is a participant. There are many ways to participate, and we each choose our own way of doing so. There are musicians, sculptors, and painters for example, but there are many other ways to participate as well. Personally, I participated in the last burn I attended by rangering, teaching an Aikido class, and paying for the campsites at Assateague. For the next burn I'll be rangering and teaching again, and in addition I'll be coordinating people helping to feed the other organizers and collecting food to be donated to a charity.

b) Community building. One of the biggest negative trends sociologists see in modern society is the breakdown of community. We are so wrapped up in our daily lives that we never really get to know our neighbors, or much of anyone else outside our immediate circle. Robert Putnam writes in the book "Bowling Alone":

"Television, two-career families, suburban sprawl, generational changes in values--these and other changes in American society have meant that fewer and fewer of us find that the League of Women Voters, or the United Way, or the Shriners, or the monthly bridge club, or even a Sunday picnic with friends fits the way we have come to live. Our growing social-capital deficit threatens educational performance, safe neighborhoods, equitable tax collection, democratic responsiveness, everyday honesty, and even our health and happiness."
To fight this, we emphasize the importance of community. According to Christian author Scott Peck's book The Different Drum: Community Making and Peace "In community, instead of being ignored, denied, hidden, or changed, human differences are celebrated as gifts"(p.62). Defining aspects of community include Inclusivity, Commitment, and Consensus. For more on what I mean by community, check out http://interweavers.com/cohousing/differentdrum.cfm.

c) Radical self expression. Basically, this just means that we aren't here to say how good or bad your art is, so go ahead and really express yourself. It's the thought that counts.

d) Radical personal responsibilty. We're all grownups here, and that means that nobody is going to go along behind you and pick up your messes. If you think something should be done, it's up to you to make it happen. I've discovered that this attitude does a lot promote people getting things done, because they know that it will do no good to complain that nobody does it.

e) Leave no trace. Because this is a camping event, respect for the environment is regarded as the full responsibility of each individual attendee. This ties in to personal responsibility

So, to the questions:

Who is the central organizer and responsible person for each of the burns?

This is one of those questions that seems simple but isn't. The basic answer is "Nobody". An equally true answer is "Everybody". Another aspect of community is summed up as follows: "... another of the essential characteristics of community is a total decentralization of authority. Remember that it is antitotalitarian. Its decisions are reached by consensus. Communities have been refered to as leaderless groups. It is more accurate, however, to say that a community is a group of all leaders. "

From a legal standpoint, the insurance for our most recent burn was purchased in the name of "Playa del Fuego" which is our incorporated non-profit.

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How is the burn contracted for?

We have a person who volunteers to be the contact person for the owners of the private land the use of which we rent for the burn. That person hands the owners of the land money for rent and shows them a copy of our liability insurance.

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Is there insurance? Who is liable?

Yes, there is insurance. "Who is liable?" is another of those "it seems simple but it isn't". If you're looking for someone at whom you can point if someone gets maimed for life, where to point your finger kind of depends on how they got themselves maimed. The law basically says that first and foremost a person is liable for his or her own actions and their consequences. Liability only shifts to another party when that party has done something maliciously or recklessly to cause the injury. So, if the burn is organized such that there is an easily foreseeable risk of injury; say, we build our bonfire right next to a full gas truck and we encourage everyone to gather around it, liability would be ours for any injury that occurs. But if somebody decides they want to look in the gas tank of their car and lights a match to help them see, it's on their own heads, no matter where they happen to be parked. So the answer to the question "who is liable?" is "whoever is liable."

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What does the insurance cover?

Liability insurance protects us in case somebody (or their insurance company) decides that a significant amount of damage to their person was caused by the way the event was organized and sues Syndicate Communications. The insurance company we used last fall and will use in the spring covers events like rock concerts. We described the kinds of events that would be going on, and they called us an extremely low risk event.

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Who is covered?

Any person who paid for a ticket to the burn while they are on VVMC property.

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Is drug use overlooked at these events? Who patrols for use of illegal substances? Who's responsible if there is such use?

I'm going to treat these as one, since the second and third pretty much assume an answer of "no" for the first question. First, my personal experience: I've never seen anyone use any drug stronger than alcohol at a burn. I can think of four sets of parents off the top of my head who have no qualms whatsoever about bringing their young children to a burn, who definitely take their responsibility as parents very seriously. It is unknown what people do in privacy at PDF, but what someone does there is just that: private. This would be true even if we had teams of police officers patrolling night and day. Basically, it is not the responsibility of any burn organizer to know what each participant is doing every minute of the burn, nor is it legal for us to try. There is plenty to do and not enough people volunteering to do it as it is without trying to take individual responsibility away from people that way.

Does everyone who goes to the burn camp out there?

I've never known anyone not to camp out at a Playa del Fuego Burn.

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How are these events organized?

Come to think of it, my answer to the first question and my opening statements answer this as well as I can

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Is there any cult-like activity that goes on at these?

My first reaction to this question was to chuckle and say "heavens, no!" But then it occured to me that David Koresh's followers might have said the same thing, so I decided to look up an objective definition of "cult" and go from there. Much to my surprise the word "cult" is used in a lot of different ways, as can be seen at http://www.religioustolerance.org/cults.htm However, I found a definition that fits what came into my mind when I read this question. I present it here, and I will answer for this definition. If this answer does not satisfy you, please feel free to contact me with your definition of the word and I will happily reply. http://www.xenu.net/cic/definit.html defines a cult as a group that meets the following criteria:


It uses psychological coercion to recruit, indoctrinate and retain its members.
It forms an elitist totalitarian society.
Its founder leader is self-appointed, dogmatic, messianic, not accountable and has charisma.
It believes 'the end justifies the means' in order to solicit funds and recruit people
Its wealth does not benefit its members or society.



We don't meet ANY of these criteria. We would be disgusted by any attempt at coercion of any kind. We are far from elitist. As a community, we strive to be egalitarian and accepting, the exact opposite of elitist. We have no leader or founder. We began as a few people getting together on the beach. We have no "ends" to justify, and we don't have any wealth; ticket sales are used to fund the events.

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How often do people get hurt at these burns and how severe are their injuries?

How does "never" sound to you? We rangers record and archive anything significant to which we respond. The following is from the after action report submitted to the planning list after our last Burn in October.

"(I) am posting the summation of "things that happened" in no particular order... Item 4. attendee suffered a minor abrasion while building (a large dome tent). small cut on the nose when some pvc (that plastic pipe you see in modern plumbing) slipped and popped him in the face.

That's the long and the short of it. Thanks for everybody's help... it would not have worked without YOU.
Items one, two, and three concerned where people had parked there cars and a person who had vomited from drinking too much. This person was asessed by a Ranger trained in first aid, and was fine except that he felt silly the next day. That's it. Our biggest burn ever, with about thirty people spinning fire, and a bonfire at least 15 feet tall, and one person bumped his nose on a piece of plastic. I've been to three other burns as well, and nobody has ever been injured. This doesn't mean that nobody will ever be injured, or that we promise to keep anyone from doing anything that might be unsafe. It simply means that radical personal responsibility means expecting the best of everyone. I've found that people tend to live up, or down, to expectations.

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Will there be police on site?

No. Why would there be?

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What about fire safety?

We place a great deal of value on personal responsibility, but we also understand that accidents happen. When we have our bonfires, there is always at least one and usually two fully equipped firefighters on hand supervising the activities.

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Can minors attend?

Anyone under the age of 18 MUST be accompanied by an adult over 21 who is willing to assume legal responsibility for the actions and well-being of the minor attendee. No exceptions, I.D. may be requested at the gate.


Note: I am also a PDF ranger and have been asked to look after folks that have over self medicated. no problem. As well as those who have had problems with dehydration and exhaustion. minor problem. In general we have had no major problems at PDf. As something of father figure at PDF I see a bit more than Keith but in general there are no major problems.
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Postby tisha2 » Mon Oct 04, 2004 11:12 pm

Okay campers - I want to quote almost all of you, but just don't have the wherewithall or the patience for all that right now...

I brought my eldest twice - first when she was 4, then when she was 6. Went alone last year (whole different experience, for sure) and I plan to bring both my now 7yo and my 3yo next year (with a dedicated nanny)

That all being said - having been for 4 years, and working for the cafe half that time ( and was there for the infamous jiffylube parade) I can't repeat or stress enough that BM is just like any other city and all this shit exists out there on the streets, on cable, whereever you might choose to look for it, and *as always* it is up to the PARENT to decide what is and is not okay to view - I also saw some kids in trouble this year, and all it took was a , "how ya doin'?" and an offer of water to break the parent/responsible adult's reverie and get the kid in a better space...

I agree that one should probably go alone first to get bearings, but I am alll for the freedom that the playa represents - Both for myself, and for my kids to *see*. I want them to know that this much radical self-expression is OKAY, and I do NOT let them see/get involved with anything that *I* deem innapropriate (AND THAT'S NOT FOR ANYONE ELSE TO JUDGE, THANK YOU VERY MUCH!!), and I manage to have just as *high* an experience seeing all this through my baby's eyes as I would on whatever everyone else is on!! My kid brought some beautiful insight to a lot of people these last few years and among all the gratitude for bringing her, I only got *one* negative response from a guy all drunk, naked from the waist down, saying, "I'd never bring my 11yo into *this* environment!!" I said, "sounds like a wise choice for you!" and headed on my way...but FUCK!!! This has become such a big ridiculous debate, and I've gotten several links emailed to me lately and honestly feel like, "FUCK!", lay fucking off!!!! The playa is there to fucking PLAY!!!! Do whatcha gotta do!! I'll let my kids see as much as I am comfortable with and if you have to do stuff that you can't let *YOUR* kids see, that's *YOUR* fucking issue.
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Postby TheMuse » Tue Oct 05, 2004 8:47 am

Hey, if it wasn't for kids I would have never found the secret ball room at Flight to Mars camp. Thankyou to the group of 7-10 year olds who taught me how to play again!
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Postby geekster » Wed Oct 06, 2004 1:44 am

http://images.burningman.com/index.cgi? ... _category=

Sorry for the long URL ... just liked the pic
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Postby Blonde Iguana » Wed Oct 06, 2004 6:13 am

Regarding bringing older kids, against ePlaya advice I came this year as a newbie bringing with me a newbie 16 year old daughter. We did GREAT. We had an INCREDIBLE time. We spent almost the entire time apart, except while in camp. She is a shy, beautiful, freaky, fringe 16 year old who flourished and blossomed and glowed and gained about 50 million tons of confidence at Burning Man. She's been a happier, more open person ever since we've returned. Discovering an entire community of people who are freaky and wonderful made all the difference for a "different" kid who lives in some very uptight boring suburbs. Burning Man is the best best best BEST thing I have ever done for her. If a kid is mature, open-minded and sensible and the parent has done everything they can to prepare the kid physically and mentally, then it's cool, baby!

TheMuse - Ha! Same here! We never would have experienced the benevolent quicksand joys of the Flight to Mars ball room if our kids hadn't patiently led us there. (LOVED Spikes, by the way).
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Postby Icepack » Wed Oct 06, 2004 7:02 am

tisha2 wrote:Okay campers - I want to quote almost all of you, but just don't have the wherewithall or the patience for all that right now...

I brought my eldest twice - first when she was 4, then when she was 6. Went alone last year (whole different experience, for sure) and I plan to bring both my now 7yo and my 3yo next year (with a dedicated nanny)

That all being said - having been for 4 years, and working for the cafe half that time ( and was there for the infamous jiffylube parade) I can't repeat or stress enough that BM is just like any other city and all this shit exists out there on the streets, on cable, whereever you might choose to look for it, and *as always* it is up to the PARENT to decide what is and is not okay to view - I also saw some kids in trouble this year, and all it took was a , "how ya doin'?" and an offer of water to break the parent/responsible adult's reverie and get the kid in a better space...

I agree that one should probably go alone first to get bearings, but I am alll for the freedom that the playa represents - Both for myself, and for my kids to *see*. I want them to know that this much radical self-expression is OKAY, and I do NOT let them see/get involved with anything that *I* deem innapropriate (AND THAT'S NOT FOR ANYONE ELSE TO JUDGE, THANK YOU VERY MUCH!!), and I manage to have just as *high* an experience seeing all this through my baby's eyes as I would on whatever everyone else is on!! My kid brought some beautiful insight to a lot of people these last few years and among all the gratitude for bringing her, I only got *one* negative response from a guy all drunk, naked from the waist down, saying, "I'd never bring my 11yo into *this* environment!!" I said, "sounds like a wise choice for you!" and headed on my way...but FUCK!!! This has become such a big ridiculous debate, and I've gotten several links emailed to me lately and honestly feel like, "FUCK!", lay fucking off!!!! The playa is there to fucking PLAY!!!! Do whatcha gotta do!! I'll let my kids see as much as I am comfortable with and if you have to do stuff that you can't let *YOUR* kids see, that's *YOUR* fucking issue.


Tisha, did you camp with Kidsville? Or on your own? Who took care of your kids while you worked at the Cafe?

I saw several kids not in Kidsville and they all seemed to be doing okay. While I like the concept of Kidsville, I like the idea of incorporating families into the community better. I don't think they should have to be segregated away to protect them from the adults. That just seems wrong to me.

I did see a couple of public sex acts on art cars that were passing by that made me think "Gee, would I really want a kid to see that?" but then again, I didn't want to see that either so... just had to look away and keep walking. If I can do that, then so can a 4 year old.
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Not just kids... your kids.

Postby Mister Jellyfish Mister » Wed Oct 06, 2004 8:11 am

As a father of two young girls left at home with my grateful wife, I found myself thinking of them whenever seeing something cool or enjoying a great experience at the burn. Wanting to follow up on this desire, I talked to other parents that brought there kids and still did not get a sense of generality regarding the right thing to do.

It came to me after I got home. That once a year, daddy does something selfish and fully self expressed. Then he comes home having relearned how to play, love, and be with people.

Speaking only for myself and family, that is the best way to go about it for now. It takes more to blow an adult's mind and that's why Burning Man facilitates that holy disconnect for us. For kids, all they need is to discover a cool bug in the back lawn. Why do parents like me feel a need to pack their children's lives with experiences? We spend all their lives getting them to trust and count on us and then want to blow it all in a week.

What really spoke to me was the look in the children's eyes at Burning Man. So here it is... If you want, delay taking the chillun's one more year and just make it a point to look in the eyes of those that attend in 2005. Then ask your heart if it's the right thing for your particular kids. Does that sound fair?

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Postby Apollonaris Zeus » Thu Oct 07, 2004 9:11 am

If I had my way there wouldn't be any one under 18 period at BM!

Even though I like kids and after biking though kidville I thought what a really cool place wishing I could be a real kid for a day they are just out of place with the prominate sex and drug topics and like many have said repetable it puts a damper on the expression of those topics.

But if I were to bring kids they would be at chained up at kidville. The kids there were supervised by one adult to a small number of kids. The adults were interacting with the kids and not just sitting there like a bored substitute teacher without a teaching plan.

In the past, I've told you about the three girls (somewhere around 15 or 16 years of age) that were trying to pick me up while I was photographing a female performer. After I continued to ignore them, they started to insult me like pubesient teenagers.

I would went up and gave them a good spanking but I would not to encourage some abberant sexual behavior in them.

Just say No to Kids!

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Postby Zulegoona » Thu Oct 07, 2004 8:02 pm

I don't have any kids so I'm not really invested in this, but I do Like seeing kids there. They are less childish that some dude wanting to show the world what he can do with his wee wee, or some couple making the poor excuse that they are doing an "in your face performance piece" by fucking in the road.

If what you are doing really has artistic merit then it is art. Do it, do it boldly and unashamedly. If it's your art don't just do it on the playa. But if it is some thing you feel you can only do on the playa, you need to ask your self why. If it is something you really need to express maybe you need a different job or friends or what ever it is that prevents you from that expression. If it isn't that important then why is it necessary to do it in front of us on the playa?

Black Rock City is a special place with special people, if it wasn't why would we go. That said, there has been a lot of discussion about the perception of Burning Man and the Idea that is just a big party with a lot of sex and drugs, attracting the wrong crowd.

Apollonaris Zeus wrote:Even though I like kids and after biking though kidville I thought what a really cool place wishing I could be a real kid for a day they are just out of place with the prominate sex and drug topics and like many have said repetable it puts a damper on the expression of those topics.

A II Z

Putting a damper on the topics of sex and drugs might not be a bad idea if we want the event to keep any focus at all on Art.

The other road would be to give up the pretence that it is anything but a big sex, drug, anything goes party in the desert. And just say no to kids
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Postby tisha2 » Fri Oct 08, 2004 11:33 pm

Icepack wrote:
tisha2 wrote:for the sake of space, see above post.


Tisha, did you camp with Kidsville? Or on your own? Who took care of your kids while you worked at the Cafe?

I saw several kids not in Kidsville and they all seemed to be doing okay. While I like the concept of Kidsville, I like the idea of incorporating families into the community better. I don't think they should have to be segregated away to protect them from the adults. That just seems wrong to me.

I did see a couple of public sex acts on art cars that were passing by that made me think "Gee, would I really want a kid to see that?" but then again, I didn't want to see that either so... just had to look away and keep walking. If I can do that, then so can a 4 year old.


I camp in Cafe Village, next door the Kidsville. I appreciate the concept and visit a lot with my kids, but my 'family' is with the cafe. I only brought my oldest daughter twice, and she either hung out with me at the cafe, drawing and gifting her art, or with my (now ex) partner. People *adore* seeing her there, and she finds some amazing spirits to learn from. I totally agree with the looking away...I manage to distract them with someting glittery whenever anything I feel to be inappropriate floats by.
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Postby geekster » Fri Oct 08, 2004 11:45 pm

It just dawned on me that if we are even having the conversation about if kids should be allowed to go then something is fundamentally broken. Maybe it is a breakdown of basic values ... free expression means doing things that kids can't see? Do we have such a desire for the extreme that we don't get a "kick" out of something unless we do something more and more and more forbidden each time?

Maybe the time HAS come for a change. Maybe BRC should be a giant drug/sex fest that finances BMorg and allows it to sponsor "real" events regionally. We hold a big party for the yahoos, collect their money and then have "real burner" events someplace else.

Just doesn't seem to be what I was always under the impression that burningman was about. I think the man has a temperature.
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Postby tisha2 » Fri Oct 08, 2004 11:48 pm

geekster wrote:It just dawned on me that if we are even having the conversation about if kids should be allowed to go then something is fundamentally broken. Maybe it is a breakdown of basic values ... free expression means doing things that kids can't see? Do we have such a desire for the extreme that we don't get a "kick" out of something unless we do something more and more and more forbidden each time?

Maybe the time HAS come for a change. Maybe BRC should be a giant drug/sex fest that finances BMorg and allows it to sponsor "real" events regionally. We hold a big party for the yahoos, collect their money and then have "real burner" events someplace else.

Just doesn't seem to be what I was always under the impression that burningman was about. I think the man has a temperature.


:D
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Postby Icepack » Sat Oct 09, 2004 7:31 am

geekster wrote:It just dawned on me that if we are even having the conversation about if kids should be allowed to go then something is fundamentally broken. Maybe it is a breakdown of basic values ... free expression means doing things that kids can't see? Do we have such a desire for the extreme that we don't get a "kick" out of something unless we do something more and more and more forbidden each time?

Maybe the time HAS come for a change. Maybe BRC should be a giant drug/sex fest that finances BMorg and allows it to sponsor "real" events regionally. We hold a big party for the yahoos, collect their money and then have "real burner" events someplace else.

Just doesn't seem to be what I was always under the impression that burningman was about. I think the man has a temperature.


Thank you!javascript:emoticon(':lol:')
javascript:emoticon(':lol:')
:lol:

Last I checked the official burning man page said that the event was an experimental COMMUNITY. The week is about living together in harmony. The sex and art and music are just a happy bi-product of that community. And if you're doing drugs, and they aren't making you happy, then you're doing the wrong drugs or shouldn't be doing them at all.

Personally, I had a great week with just a couple of beers and a few hard lemonades. I passed on the special brownies, and didn't feel like I was missing out at all.
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Postby geekster » Sat Oct 09, 2004 11:10 am

It just seems like I hear an attitude of "what the fuck are all these kids doing here? I came out here to screw and get wasted and they are dowsing my burn." Makes me want to reach for the tard spray. When I hear "Kids might close down the bars" I am really thinking " ya dumbass, no they won't, you just might have to BRING YOUR OWN FUCKING BOOZE and not expect to stagger from tent to tent mooching THEIRS. BM isn't about free booze last time I looked. Or maybe you might have to actually make FRIENDS with people in that camp in order to crack into their bar stock rather than just belly up and drop your cup on the table.

I have dome my share of drugs in my life and I know one thing, no WAY I would be SERIOUSLY tripping on that playa without a babysitter to watch me ... and what kind of self-reliance is that? I dunno. It just seems that the further you go down the route to "BM is just a party" the closer you get to it getting out of control.
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Postby stuart » Mon Oct 18, 2004 11:27 am

the presence of kids is a lever that LEO uses to clamp down on the goings on at the event. For me it's not an issue of value ad or community w/o kids or your rights or whether I do or don't dig kids being there. For me the question is: Does having kids at the event put the event at undue risk? If so, is it worth that risk?
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Postby tisha2 » Mon Oct 18, 2004 10:07 pm

It's seems to me that BMORG might be using the family-community angle as a lever to clean up public perceptions of the event. though i saw exactly what your talking about with the jiffy lube incident at the cafe couple years ago.

and how come the poll is so weighted to "no" when most of the posts seem to be kid-friendly?? why doncha tell us WHY yer voting to not have kids at the event...? huh?

and don't gimme the "i don't want to have to censor my behavior cuz there's kids around" bit. that's not your job. that's the parents job. there's a lot of great and informative reading right here on this website to prepare folks that are bringing kids. it takes some work and attention but for me it's worth it for my kids to observe this type of Radical Self Expression and know that it's acceptable, and hell, celebrated.

i think the LEO issue and the behavior-consoring issue are both handled pretty well with the clearly labeled areas for particular types of activities. don't bring yer drugged orgy to kids camp, and we won't bring our kids to jiffy lube. kay? the points in between are up to the parents...just like out here in the default world.
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Postby stuart » Tue Oct 19, 2004 11:45 am

that's not your job. that's the parents job



everyone agrees on this. Save for the LEOs. Unfortunately, they have the guns.

Just to make it clear, I aint against kids at burning man and I don't do anything there that would cause them grief, except maybe swearing my head off while pulling rebar or something. I don't make policy though.
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Postby arthurz » Tue Oct 19, 2004 11:57 am

Tisha2, your comments here have been right on, thanks.

I think the main reason the vote is against kids on this thread is that the vast majority of burning parents don't have time to spend on eplaya.

If you look at the basic principles of Burning Man that the LLC has published but not really communicated very much, the first one indicates that you cannot exclude a big chunk of the population based on age:
http://regionals.burningman.com/network_principles.html

It is up to the parents to control their kids and teach them to control themselves, and since I can't walk off my property in default with my little ones without holding their hands for safety, I should not expect anything more in the middle of a wilderness survival experiment! That's why I want to be able to bring them the first half of the week and send them to burning kids camp the second half so mommy and daddy can let loose.

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Postby tisha2 » Tue Oct 19, 2004 12:25 pm

arthurz wrote: That's why I want to be able to bring them the first half of the week and send them to burning kids camp the second half so mommy and daddy can let loose.

Peace,

Arthur

thank you, arthurz.

do you mean Kidsville at Burning Man, or is there some special sleepaway camp for kids whose folks are at BM that I don't know about?
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Postby arthurz » Tue Oct 19, 2004 3:50 pm

There's no sleepaway camp yet, but I want to put one together!

Basically parents would bring their kids to burning man through Wednesday morning, then a bus would take the kids to some kind of cool burner-influenced summer camp in the desert, in Reno, or wherever. I'm betting there must be a facility somewhere within a few hours that isn't in use that weekend, and there must be some qualified child care professionals in the region that would want to make a few bucks doing it. If nothing else, we could set it up right on the playa, though that might cause too many of us to go visit our kids too often.

Our kids are only 3.5 & 2, so assuming grandma & grandpa will take them again in 05, I'm interested in this as a long-term plan, perhaps for BM06.

If a sleepaway camp for kids is too ambitious, I'll perhaps try to get a bunch of us together to share a couple full-time professional nannies for the week so we don't have to supervise our kids 24/7. The bottom line is that as you know better than I, having your kids with you makes the experience about them if you are going to be a responsible parent. Call me selfish, but while I want them to experience burning man very much once they are old enough to appreciate it, I only want to give up half of my own burning man experience to get it for them.

Let's have our cake and eat it too!

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Postby bloody_valentine » Wed Dec 01, 2004 9:32 pm

This is The Daughter. I would just like to say that Burning Man didn't necessarily change my life, but certainly restored my faith in humanity for awhile.

I'm really tired right now so I'll just leave it at that for the moment. Thank you for everyone's opinions they've been taken in to consideration, or so I like to tell you.

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Postby tbirdphoto » Mon Jan 10, 2005 7:21 am

Right on Blonde, I am heading down from Tacoma,
My 16 year pld daughter says she doesn't want to go,
I gave gher a chance amybe she will change her mind
but I am not going to push it, I am looking into putting together a camp
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Postby Rian Jackson » Mon Jan 10, 2005 9:24 am

hey tbird (and ms. iguana) come check out the local events some time. i don't know of as much in Tac Town, but Seattle is usually hopping. Regardless, we have fairly strong (and growing) connections to Vancouver BC and Portland. Also, a fair number of us online jackasses are from here. And we're very easy to find.

Cheers,
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also look for the burningman BCWA listerv on yahoogroups.
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Postby tbirdphoto » Wed Jan 12, 2005 3:59 am

We are in the process of putting together a new camp right now,
Camp "Thunderbird" , recruiting members and getting our plan together.
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Postby Blonde Iguana » Wed Jan 12, 2005 9:50 am

Rian, us isolated Southies would love to attend more Seattle events, but the majority of them seem to be 21+, including the weekly gatherings at the LL. I did hit the Newbie picnic last year, but am definitely looking for more opportunities for my teen daughter and I to mix it up on a "family" level with local burners. If you know of any that aren't listed on the Seaplaya etc. I would love to know of them, because both my daughter and I would love to get more involved but are a little intimidated for some lame reason.

Tbird, I'm interested in gathering with South End burners. You betcha! My daughter and I are lonely lil' burners here in Federal Way. Especially if you have a teen daughter who needs a little peer pressure from another teen! :wink: I'm not sure about joining a camp, because my SO will be returning from Baghdad in March and wants to go to Burning Man with me, but I don't want to make any camping commitments to others without getting him involved first, because who knows what his frame of mind will be after a year in Baghdad. But exchanging ideas, stuff, talents, whatever, all sounds good to me!
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Postby Rian Jackson » Wed Jan 12, 2005 10:28 am

well, m'dear, are wednesdays good nights for you?
i don't know the specifics, but i DO know that there's now a weekly movie night - rotating from house to house - on wednesdays.

casual thing, good way to meet some of the local yahoos.

interested? PM me and i'll see about getting you specifics, if you want.
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