Got a vision? Create a Kiez!
How to create your own Kiez
We quote extensively, and with permission, from the Nowhere barrio team. Hopefully this answers all of your questions about creating a theme camp (or Kiez, as they’re known at Kiez Burn).
Why a Kiez?
Let’s be honest, coming to Kiez Burn is a lot of work. It is fun, fantastic, interesting and quite probably a life-changing experience too – but it’s also tough. And that’s just the self-reliance part – we haven’t even talked about the self-expression part yet!
By working together with a group of like-minded people, you can divide the work so you still have some time, energy and resources left over for fun things like art projects, bars, trampolines and maybe even a ball pit.
It’s good to co-operate…
Food is important. After you’ve spent 4 days eating three meals a day of barely identifiable goo out of cans with potato chips, you will fully appreciate how much happier nice food can make you. Your Kiez can either supply a kitchen that people can cook in or you can cook collectively.
A kitchen is not strictly necessary for survival, but a nice kitchen with shade, a kitchen counter, a good stove, pots and pans, and a good dish-washing area will make food preparation much more fun. Please note that this year, no power can be used for kitchens!
Some experienced nowherians have shared their experience and knowledge with helpful tips – if you’re setting up your own kitchen, then make sure you check them out on Nowhere’s How to run a theme camp kitchen page.
Many types of shade could be used at Kiez Burn, from simple carports and large tents, to more complex geodesic domes and tensegrity structures. Many members of the community can give advice on how to develop a suitable design, so if you need some assistance, post on the facebook group.
Whether or not we will be able to provide power to your kiez can only be determined after your placement. The process of the power discussions can be followed here on Talk.
Where will I be?
Aha! Placement, site planning, the flow of things… We will discuss that here I hope we find nice solutions for all the Kieze with lots of great neighbors!
Art & Art Grants (NOW DREAMS)
Kiez Burn is also about art. Forming a Kiez is a great way to combine resources to create an art project. Like everything at Kiez Burn, make sure any art you make is leave no trace.
While Kieze themselves are not supported by the Kiez Burn art grants system, if your camp has artistic elements (a sculpture, installation or performance, for example) they may be eligible for an art grant. We will post more information about Dreams in the coming weeks.
Do not underestimate your camp’s budget needs. Count on an average cost per person between 60-120€ per person depending on what you bring. One advice: do not let people pay on-site, as that causes money-hassle and puts too much pressure on the person arranging the budget. How previous camps have done it: have camp prices that increase by time, so people are motivated to transfer in time (potentially with the policy that this is refundeable). You could also consider low-income camp prices.
Kiez Burn is not a festival. Nor is it an event with a big main stage. Instead, Kieze are the heart and soul of the event, becoming the best places for people and groups to perform. Your Kiez could be one of those places, and you could even organise your own performances or music. Many camps bring their own sounds systems and provide a variety of entertainment. You can also think of collaborating with other Kieze to fill your space with new artists or to find new spaces to perform!
Workshops are a fantastic way to interact with other Kiez Burn participants. Is there a workshop that your camp could host? Perhaps you could provide a space where others could host their workshops? Please plan head! We hope there will be someone taking up workshop organization and/or program printing. More information
A well-stocked bar
If nothing else, throwing a party and having a well-stocked bar is a very simple way to give something to the community. As Kiez Burn is a no-commerce event, any booze served must be given as a gift. Just remember: when you throw a party, people might leave bottles. If they do, it becomes your responsibility to take those bottles again with you when you leave.
Now that you have all your basic survival needs organized, and decided on your contribution to the event, you’ll need to bring everything to Kiez Burn. Some of the things, like food, liquids and some of the construction materials, you might be able to buy locally, but mostly you will need to bring things with you. Many kieze will hire a van or truck and share the cost, and if you have enough space, you can even charge other people for transporting their things too.
After the event, you need to clean up: Kiez Burn is a leave no trace event, so we expect you to leave no trace! While cleaning up the mess for an entire camp by yourself is no fun, doing it with a bunch of people can be a party in itself. It makes life much easier if you clean up as you go, but make sure you have volunteers to stay behind to clean up as well. Check out the ‘Cleanup’ section below for more details.
It is amazing how much waste a group of people living at a burn event for a week can produce. And all of that waste will have to go with you when you leave. So how do you be environmentally conscious and reduce the amount of nasty, smelly rubbish you have to bring back with you at the same time? The secret is: recycling.
In the past, people have told us that they don’t know if they’re welcome at other kieze. It certainly does feel a bit weird wandering into someone else’s camp and making yourself at home, but at Kiez Burn, that’s just what we do!
There are a number of easy things you can do to make your camp feel more welcoming:
- have a chat with anyone who walks past or into your camp
- offer space, and resources such as a stage, PA etc., if you have them in your camp, for performances and workshops by other people
- have a noticeboard up announcing what events are happening at your kiez and when they will happen
- organise an ‘open day’ for your camp, inviting people to come meet you
If you are going to burn shit, you need to plan ahead so we can ask the fire safety dude for what you can and should not do. More information coming soon.
How can an event with hundreds of people rise up from the dust, only to vanish without a trace? The answer is YOU.
Burning Man’s Earth Guardians have some great leave no trace tips, and sample leave no trace and green plans.
We have found that the amount of debris dropped on the ground is directly proportional to the length of stay. Densely settled areas such as kieze can leave a greater trace. Debris includes many smaller items, such as bottle caps, cigarette butts, plastic ties – the list goes on and on. It is easy to ignore such items on so small a scale, but ALL of these things must be cleaned up.
We recommend that all kieze imitate our large-scale clean-up effort and employ a systematic grid to police their area for trash. Walk this grid before departing with your Kiez and pick up EVERYTHING in your path. A second and more basic rule to follow is – don’t let things hit the ground in the first place! This will save you time and effort at the end of the event.
There are towns nearby that do like a quiet weekend. However, they are far enough away if we just point the boxes in the right direction. So we can make a lot of noise, we just need to align it to the right compass needle.
When designing the layout of your Kiez, think about how your camp will be used and check out some sample layout plans from Burning Man.
Make sure there is enough space between tents for escape pathway
When you have decided to become a registered kiez, we kindly ask you to please sign up in the Kiez Registration Form. Keep in mind that when you complete the questionnaire, only a limited number of your campmates will be allowed to arrive before Kiez Burn opens in order to set up, and you will have to tell us all their names ahead of time.