​Burning Man Outdoor Festival Attracts Larger Burning Man Crowds​​

By:
September 2, 2021

The Burning Man outdoor art and music festival attracted crowds of more than 61,000 people in the Black Rock Desert of northern Nevada. As crowds reached the maximum capacity, gate management was tightened.

U.S. Bureau of Land Management spokesman Mark Turney says organizers reported one person was flown to a hospital by medical helicopter this week after being struck by a vehicle.

No other serious incidents have been reported.

One of the 68,000 people in attendance has been retired U.S. Army general and former Democratic Party presidential nominee Wesley Clark. That’s according to Electronic Frontier Foundation co-founder, Harvard Law School professor, and former Grateful Dead lyricist John Perry Barlow, who tweeted that he had spent time speaking with Clark on Saturday afternoon.

Clark seems to have picked a good year to attend, as well as a record-breaking crowd, the weather has been better than usual, with balmy nights, mild days and minimal dust blowing.

The annual art, music and everything-else festival is now in its 27th year and runs through until Labor Day.

Each night is capped by the torching of one of the elaborate large wooden sculptures erected on the site. Saturday was highlighted by the immolation of a work called Photochapel.

The temporary encampment and art festival in Pershing County was filled with 68,000 attendees by Friday morning, and the sheriff’s department was not allowing anyone in unless someone else left.

During his 34 years in the Army and the Department of Defense, Clark receiving many military decorations, several honorary knighthoods, and a Presidential Medal of Freedom.

He also commanded Operation Allied Force in the Kosovo War during his term as the Supreme Allied Commander Europe of NATO from 1997 to 2000.

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.

Organizers stress it’s mostly up to participants to decide what Burning Man is.

This year’s event is the largest ever, even with tickets costing up to $650. Attendance peaked last year at 56,000. The BLM raised the crowd limit this year after organizers agreed to security, public safety, resource management and cleanup rules.