The 27th annual Burning Man festival in northern Nevada’s Black Rock Desert comes to a close today after a week of fiery excess.
A record-breaking crowd of 61,000 revelers watched the namesake 40-foot effigy burn to the ground on Saturday in northern Nevada’s Black Rock Desert. Sunday saw more giant bonfires and even one fiery tornado.
The temporary town known as Black Rock City, which convenes once a year, will now disperse and leave only the burning embers of their desert party behind.
The largest outdoor arts festival in North America is best described as an “experimental community”. It incorporates plenty of partying plus lighting massive fire displays, donning eye-catching costumes and performing passionate dances at sunrise.
The Burning Man concludes each year on Labor Day after an explosive final night in which the effigy burns and partygoers fit in as much debauchery as possible.
This year’s event was the largest ever, even with tickets costing up to $650. Attendance peaked last year at 56,000.
The crowd limit was raised this year after organizers agreed to security, public safety, resource management and cleanup rules.
The festival has become a haven for hippies, artists, musicians and dancers and provides a week for people to explore artistic expression. No money is exchanged at the event; instead the festival-goers swap gifts to attain goods.
Many festival-goers have been impressed by the size and look of this year’s Man Base, a structure that houses the iconic ‘Man’ figure which was burned on Saturday night.
Inside a flying saucer under the Man is a multi-level structure with zoetropes, a giant chandelier and views of Black Rock City. Slides serve as exits.
The Black Rock Desert is 120 miles north of Reno and the Burning Man is the largest permitted event on federal land in the United States.