Camp Placement Criteria

So, you want to register a Theme Camp, Village or Mutant Vehicle Camp? All camps desiring placement in Black Rock City must fill out the Camp Placement Questionnaire, which goes live mid-February and closes at 12 pm Noon Pacific Time on the last Thursday of April. See Burner Profiles for exact dates in a specific year.

To receive placement, camps must meet the criteria below for their camp category. Camps must also be in good standing after the event, you can read the criteria to be in good standing.

Theme Camps and Villages

A Theme Camp is an interactive camp. Theme Camps are groups of Burning Man participants who come together to provide a service, education, entertainment, art, or other creative planned or spontaneous interactive experience for everyone in Black Rock City. This interactivity can be truly anything, as long as it happens within your camp!

Theme Camps are home to groups of anywhere from three to 400 people. There are also Villages, which are groups of two or more Theme Camps containing a minimum of 38 to 50 people.

Criteria for Theme Camp or Village placement:

  1. Camps should be visually stimulating, have an inviting frontage, and welcoming camp layout. Camps should also plan for bike parking and crowd management.
  2. Camps must be interactive. They should include activities, happenings, or offerings within their camps and they must be available to the Burning Man community. The amount of interactive offerings must be proportional to camp size.
    • Camps are encouraged to include interactivity that is different or unique.   This can include putting your camp’s creative spin on a commonly found offering to make it more interesting or providing something that can only be experienced at Burning Man.
    • Camps are encouraged to think outside the box. Interactivity may be scheduled/planned or spontaneous. Informal and spontaneous happenings that encourage immediacy, personal interactions and community connections, especially among your neighbors, should be mentioned in your questionnaire.
    • Camps are encouraged to remember that bigger/more is not always better. Doing something well is much preferred rather than adding something just to add more to your questionnaire.
    • Camps are encouraged to make sure that every camper contributes to their interactive offerings. This ensures that a camp’s offerings increase proportionally as its population does, which is key to receiving placement.
    • Camps are encouraged to create interactive experiences that clearly  welcome other participants to join in the experience.
  3. Camps must be neighborly. This includes keeping sound within set limits, controlling where camp generators vent exhaust, and easily resolving any sound, boundary, or other disputes that arise.
  4. Camps must have a good previous MOOP record (for returning camps).
  5. Camps must follow safety protocols designed by the organization, including traffic management on the streets, proper handling of fuels, and any other areas defined by the organization’s production team.
  6. Finally, camps must submit a registration questionnaire — including an uploaded camp layout plan and a Leave No Trace commitment — before the deadline, which is the last Thursday in April at Noon 12pm Noon Pacific Time.

Thank you for creating a Theme Camp or Village for Burning Man!

Mutant Vehicle Camps

A Mutant Vehicle Camp and its campers primarily focus on using their Mutant Vehicles (MV) to provide interactivity to Black Rock City citizens on playa. Mutant Vehicle Camps are placed outside interactive Theme Camp areas and as close to their requested location as possible.

Criteria for Mutant Vehicle Camp placement:

  1. You must fill out a Mutant Vehicle Application with the Department of Mutant Vehicles (DMV) and a Camp Placement Questionnaire with Placement by their respective deadlines. See Burner Profiles for exact dates this year.
  2. To receive placement, your Mutant Vehicle must be invited and receive Work Access Passes (WAP) from the DMV for early site access to the event. Placement checks directly with the DMV to ensure your MV is invited and receiving WAPs. Placement does not issue Work Access Passes to Mutant Vehicle Support Camps.
  3. Mutant Vehicle Camp sizes must fall within the population criteria parameters based on the capacity/occupancy of the Mutant Vehicle(s). The capacity/occupancy of your Mutant Vehicle is submitted on your Mutant Vehicle Application. See table below.
  4. Mutant Vehicle Camps must be neighborly. This includes keeping sound within set limits, controlling where camp generators vent exhaust, and easily resolving any sound, boundary, or other disputes that arise.
  5. Mutant Vehicle Camps must have a good previous MOOP record (for returning camps).
  6. Mutant Vehicle Camps must follow safety protocols designed by the organization, including traffic management on the streets, proper handling of fuels, and any other areas defined by the organization’s production team

Mutant Vehicle (MV) Camp Population Criteria

MV capacity Maximum number
of campmates
Maximum Sq Ftg
of camp
1 – 4 7 – 12 5,000
5 – 10 13 – 18 7,500
11 – 20 19 – 25 10,000
21 – 30 38 – 50 20,000
31 – 40 38 – 50 20,000
41 – 50 51 – 75 30,000
51 – 60 51 – 75 30,000
61 – 70 51 – 75 30,000
71 – 80 51 – 75 30,000
81 – 90 76 – 100 40,000
91 – 100 76 – 100 40,000
101+ 76 – 100 40,000

If your camp doesn’t need that much room, please ask for the population and square footage you need, not the maximum allowed, to help with density and open camping in Black Rock City.

If you have more than one MV, take the maximum number of campmates corresponding with each MV’s capacity and add them together. This will give you the total maximum camp population and square footage for all your MVs.

For example, if MV #1 has a capacity of 21-30 (= 50 people in camp max) and MV #2 has a capacity of 5-10 (= 18 people in camp max), then your total maximum camp size would be 68 people, which falls within the 51-75 number of campmates bracket of 30,000 sq ft.

If your combined total is higher than what’s on the above table, email placement@burningman.org for help determining your maximum population and square footage.