This year’s Man stands 105′ tall above the center of Black Rock City with his arms lowered. Tonight, he’ll raise them, making his total height 120′, and his face will light up. This will be the signal we’ve waited for all week – let the show begin – the flame will be carried from the first night’s drum circle, the one that has burned all week in Center Camp, in The Grand Procession by The Sentinels to the Great Circle of The Man where fire dancers roll staffs, swing poi balls, turn flaming hoops to beating drums and the shouting crowd. Then fireworks will dot and shimmer above the neon lights and thundering music of the art cars, camps, and art installations around Black Rock City and at 9:25p, the performances end and – BOOM! – The Man will be engulfed a blaze so large that it could create its own dust devils of embers and sand but the crowd won’t mind the elements, they’ll be dancing, cheering – this is the moment.
But know that this magic has been scrutinized and planned by Burning Man to ensure a safe burn. (See pic above.) Once the pyrotech crew does their final set up, completes their staff headcount, no one is allowed within 150′ of The Man. Closest are The Sandmen who watch the burn and provide the last barrier of crowd security. At all times, Emergency Services has a dedicated point of entry to the Great Circle. The closest fire performer is at least 330′ from The Man. There is a barrier of Burning Man Rangers (security), then finally, 400′ away from The Man is the L3K Line, the crowd perimeter. I’ll be sitting at 4:53 (see map above), facing The Man.
For the Burners and Burners at Heart who can’t be on The Playa tonight, join us in spirit — consider lighting a candle between 9:25p-10:25p Pacific time. Maybe meditate? Raise a glass towards Nevada? Maybe you’ll hear us cheering? Find your own way tonight spark the magic of Burning Man and let its warmth carry you through the next year.
Dustiest Alohas Ever,
P.S. Thank you to Burning Man’s Fire Convergence team for your transparency on these construction details and event specifics! 😀