Camp Development & Support Team

The Camp Development & Support (CDS) team supports, develops and connects the camp community in Black Rock City and camps throughout the Regional Network. Our objectives are: 1) To support and advise camps to reach their goals and 2) To help camp leaders be their best selves. We will amplify and connect the people, resources, and experience that already exist throughout our community. Modeling after the Community Development discipline, we do not have all the answers. This team is a new central hub for the internal workings of camps so we can develop together on a wider scale. This team is separate from the BRC Placement Team. Camp Leads must still communicate with their Placers for everything they already do, including their camp questionnaire, camp placement decisions, Directed Group Sale, and on playa during build week.

What We Do

Email our help desk at campsupport@burningman.org

Anyone can email us questions, challenges you’re facing, ideas you have, etc. Our experienced team of camp leaders will help (non-snarkily!) however they can. We may directly answer your question, link you to a resource, connect you (consensually) with someone from another camp who went through a similar challenge, or direct you to a distributed social network so you can get multiple answers to your question. Think of this as a help desk for the inner workings of camps - build, food, acculturation, logistics, interactivity, frontage, leave no trace, camp finances, camper participation, leadership, and the list goes on! Email us at campsupport@burningman.org

Theme Camp Symposium

The Theme Camp Symposium is an annual event where camp leaders convene for programming, panels, break out sessions, knowledge sharing, and time to connect with our amazing community. In 2019 the Camp Development & Support Council took over as the leaders and producers of this event. If you’re interested in getting in volunteering, email campcouncil@burningman.org with [TCS] or [Symposium] in the subject line. 

Camp Advisory Program

The Camp Advisory Program connects camps who need support with experienced camp leaders who are willing to mentor and advise them. We will announce more details about the 2019 program soon! If you have questions about the program, email campcouncil@burningman.org with [Advisory] in the email subject line. 

Stories from the City

Stories from the City is a project to tell the stories of camps so our community can be inspired, educated, and recognized. We’re spinning up this project. If you’re interested in getting involved as a writer, email campcouncil@burningman.org with [Stories] in the email subject line.

Camp Network

In our effort to connect camps across Burning Man’s Global Network, we are facilitating the creation of new online groups around specific camp functions so we can support each other with more specialized discussions and information sharing. We’ll be publishing a directory of all online camp groups soon. We’re also planning opportunities in Black Rock City for camp leaders and neighborhoods to connect and be appreciated. If you’re interested in volunteering to help connect and network camps around the world, email campcouncil@burningman.org with [Network] in the email subject line. 

Online Resources

We’re revamping online resources on the Burning Man website (check out the recently updated Camp Resource Guide). We’re scheming about how to appropriately share the resources that exist within camps (i.e. the hundreds of great new camper orientation guides out there) for some improved Communal Effort. If you’re interested in volunteering to help us on this project, email campcouncil@burningman.org with [Resouces] in the email subject line. 

The CDS Council:

Candice has been part of the Black Rock Community since 1997 and an active member of multiple Theme Camps over the years; Fandango, Funk Camp & Acid Cabaret. She’s been mayor of the Blissfits Retirement Village since 2008. Her passion is to help foster a nurturing environment that helps people spread their wings to become better versions of themselves, enabling dreamers to dream big. She is a big believer in the Black Rock City community and its ability to change the world.

Captain Vic made his first trip to BRC in 2002 and has attended every year since then. He has been the leader of the Children of Chaos theme camp since 2003. Over the years, the Children of Chaos has hosted a number of performance art events, costume parades, mutant vehicles, and a conversation bar. This camp includes members ranging in age from their 20s to their 80s, and includes members from a dozen countries.

Chemical Ali took his maiden voyage to Burning Man in 2011 and like so many others was immediately inspired the creativity and community. He co-founded a sound-camp called The Kazbah in 2013 along with two of his best friends. The unique mixture of design, music, community, hospitality, and problem solving has motivated their team to who has been dedicated to a mission of elevating the project ever since its inception.

A computer geek in the Default World, Mark first ventured into TTITD in 2004 and later helped found The Paradise Motel in 2008. Designed to resemble the most garish of '60s roadside motels, it has grown to over 50 people from SF, LA and NY. Along the way, he's managed to make every mistake possible, short of blowing it up, so is a veritable fount of knowledge of what NOT to do. As part of the new Camp Development & Support (CDS) Team, he's here to help folks deal with their camp dilemmas.

In 2006, Fixxer went to a Regional and found his people. He got home, walked his farm and thought “hmm, I’m a TCO, no wonder I’ve been gathering this stuff my whole life!” Rootpile was born, a theme camp bringing Bluegrass music and southern food and culture to the playa. An MBA, a git-er-dun Hillbilly mentality, a life of leadership, musical skills and the ability to do every trade in the book turned Rootpile into one of the most different camps on playa.

Not Blue followed Burning Man for a decade or more from afar, unable to find time (and perhaps the guts) to attend while serving as an army officer in places like Yemen, Lebanon, Oman, and Kuwait. He's since married a longtime Burner and has camped with and been part of the leadership team for 747 Big Imagination. Not Blue is a well-published author in the civilian world and also a business leader.

Pele’s favorite thing to do at the Burn is nourish hard-working builders that sweat and toil behind the scenes. She spent her virgin Burn helping organize registration at Red Lightning, also its first year on the Playa. She joined the leadership team and officially took the helm in 2012. Pele got her BA from Smith College and a Masters of Not-for-Profit Leadership from Seattle U. When she’s not planning her next dusty adventure she can be found riding her horse and traveling the world.

Trippi Longstocking created and manages the CDS Team. She was previously the Placement Manager and now oversees the current Placement Manager and Placement Team. Trippi came to Black Rock City in 2011 and spent her springs, summers, and Burns living, breathing, and leading her theme camp. She also contributed to an art installation and several times spontaneously biked out to greet incoming Burners. She was previously an operations leader in the food industry. She loves facilitating and speaking about culture, city planning, and communication. Also adores spreadsheets and guinea pigs.

Burning Man found Yeti in 2004. Upon arrival he thought "Oh, this is where you all are." Yeti and friends (no one does this alone) formed their first Theme Camp in 2005 and have continued to do so every year since. In 2014, in a fit of delusion, Yeti became mayor (for lack of a better title) of the BRC HOA. Yeti's wrangling and planning of the village continues and as camps come and go the village remains active and a very nice place to visit in Black Rock City.