Maze theme camp - asking for campers and advice!

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gitnauk
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Maze theme camp - asking for campers and advice!

Post by gitnauk » Wed Mar 24, 2010 12:10 pm

Hello all! A small group of us stretched across Ann Arbor, MI and Chicago, IL are bringing the Syncytium Maze Theme Camp to the playa this year, with a test run at Lakes of Fire. That's right - you get to camp in the middle of a maze (with an easy exit for campers, don't worry ;)) And you get to offer something to the BRC folks who wander through.

We're extending an invitation to join, regardless of where you live.
We've got folks from the UK and maybe California. You're welcome to bring technology, homemade instruments, or anything else you'd like to provide the maze and its BRC participants. Help construct or decorate it (we have parties for that!), or just be part of camp life when you're there.

We're also on this board to ask for advice on how to run a theme camp, ideas on supplies, how to fit vehicles in our lay out, or even suggestions of "wouldn't it be cool if the maze had this?" We're applying for placement by April 29.

If you'd like to join the mailing list to join the camp, offer advice, or hear news, sign up at http://www.burningmaze.org
Introduce yourself if you're considering camping with us. ;)

with love,
The Syncytium Group

(posted by Amanda, on behalf of the above)

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gitnauk
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Post by gitnauk » Wed Mar 24, 2010 12:13 pm

Here is a schematic of our maze, back when we intended this to be an art installation. It will have to undergo a few changes now that it is a theme camp. (For instance, we will no longer have a large tower in the middle. We might have something tall for 1 or 2 people to climb at a time or a giant periscope to see over the maze and to be seen as a central point by maze wanderers. To be determined!

http://burningmaze.googlegroups.com/web ... F2zZc-IXwH

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Fire_Moose
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Post by Fire_Moose » Wed Mar 24, 2010 1:24 pm

I'm SO gonna moop my minotaur in the middle.
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gitnauk
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Post by gitnauk » Wed Mar 24, 2010 2:24 pm

Hawt.

Also, got photos
http://www.facebook.com/photo_search.ph ... 0&view=all

and a video
http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php ... 2771325920

from our inaugural canvas painting party. These are some of the walls of the maze-to-be!

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Patamon
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I love it!

Post by Patamon » Mon Mar 29, 2010 4:13 pm

Some of my favorite Burning Man memories over the past 10 years have been from mazes, maze camps like "mission to mars" around 5 years ago, and the year the man was in a maze (I believe it was the year "The Pysche" was the theme)

So I LOVE that you guys are doing this.

Why no tower though if it's a theme camp? There are tons of theme camps with towers.

Can't wait to get lost in the maze! :D

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Patamon
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Also.

Post by Patamon » Mon Mar 29, 2010 4:23 pm

Git.. also to follow up on the rest of your post where you asked about ideas etc.

Some of the stuff I loved seeing in the other mazes that have been at Burning Man (or elsewhere)...

* little hidden areas that are hard to get too, maybe have a small bar or something there to hang out at as a reward.

* ball room, gotta have a room where you swim through balls! (like Chucky-Cheese type of balls, not sweaty stinky shirt cocker balls) :lol:

* Batman/Photo lab style door thingies where the wall spins around you and leads to another room (or two).

* multiple levels, it helps disorient people so they have no idea where they are.

* spooky disorienting sound effects

* a tower, I hope you keep that, its a great reward at the end to be above it all and look down into the maze.

Ok I'm jazzzed, I really hope you guys pull this off. (I guess I always wanted to do a maze camp...heh).

- Patamon

PS: If you want any advice on the more boring parts of running a theme camp send me an email on here, I've been doing this 10 years, and Planet Earth is my 3rd theme camp.


note: edited for typo's

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Colourfulkiz
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Post by Colourfulkiz » Mon Mar 29, 2010 5:35 pm

This sounds awesome! I would love to join. Will you all be arriving early to set up?
Excited to be a virgin burner again, this time in BRC!

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gitnauk
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Post by gitnauk » Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:23 pm

Patamon - thanks man! We're going to be meeting on April 10 to go over some stuff for theme camps and we'll definitely be looking over your posts and suggestions. We'll also likely be generating a ton of questions at that time too, so be prepared. ;)

As for a tower, we would still like to bring something, though probably not one as large or costly as our original plans.

Also, we're trying to get in contact with Flight to Mars to ask them for advice, but it seems they might be offline this year.

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Post by gitnauk » Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:25 pm

Oh some questions for right now:

Any recommendation on materials to use? Right now we're just thinking of trying to get as much free cloth as possible to paint and use as the maze walls. We're scavenging around laundry services and hotels. Other suggestions?

Also, we're trying to decide what's most cost effective yet sturdy to hold up the maze walls. We were thinking rebar and PVC. Or wood? Or metal conduit?

As for painting the maze walls, we're just depending on spray paint unless there are other ideas on that too.

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Post by gitnauk » Mon Mar 29, 2010 6:26 pm

Colourfulkiz - that's great if you want to join! Feel free to email me and I'll give you more details about actually camping with us.

And yes, if we get placed, we expect to arrive early for setting up.

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Post by zifra » Tue Mar 30, 2010 12:24 am

Your biggest issue is wind. I had a carnival game structure there one year. What worked for me was stringing twine between poles, and then tied strips of colorful fabric to the twine. When the wind was quiet it lay and made clear walls, but the wind went right through it without any resistance.

I envision rebar every 10 feet, 20 feet of PVC bowed and shoved on two of the rebars, tie from the ground, to the top of a bow, to the other side bow, and back to the ground. It will hold in any wind.

Good luck, stop by for a lemonade!
Zifra

Cannot wait top get home!

"Feel it, Live it, Share it!"

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Post by Ugly Dougly » Tue Mar 30, 2010 9:47 am

Think in terms of escape routes. You don't want to be in the middle of a burning maze. Safety third.

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Neat!!!!

Post by digirati.agent » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:55 pm

This is my first visit to BRC and am hoping to hook up with a theme camp. I would love to help as the camp plans begin to take shape. I will be keeping an eye on this thread!
"I thought what I'd do was, I'd pretend I was one of those deaf-mutes."

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Post by gitnauk » Tue Mar 30, 2010 8:19 pm

digirati - feel free to email me if you want to stay in our camp! More details will come then.

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Post by gitnauk » Wed Mar 31, 2010 11:03 pm

A question about funding... we're applying for grant money from Chicago Burning Arts. Does anyone have any other suggestions for how we can apply for money?

We'll probably also need to fundraise somehow...

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Post by mdmf007 » Thu Apr 01, 2010 8:40 am

Fabric makes great sails on playa so be careful. Our first maze on playa was made of the shade structure cloth. It works ok, but in a high wind tends to want to flap and rip.

Our second and subsequent mazes (labyrinth) have been made out of plywood stood on end. to form 8 foot high walls. We applied for funding, got it twice, its expensive to haul 900 sheets of plywood and 800 2x4s out to playa.

The drive with all my pics from then crashed a couple of years (learned to backup since) So here's some animations.

You asked for tips concerning mazes on playa:
1. Make it robust, drunks lose coordination and crash into things.
2. Drugs and altered persons lose patience and want out even if it means bashing their way out, have escape routes clearly marked.
3. People that drop by and are excited, love it, and want to participate later - wont. So do not plan on them coming back (there are exceptions)
4. Clean up will take longer than you thought. If you have everyone in BRC go through it once and 5% drop something that can be a lot of crap to pick up.
5. You wont be as nearly productive as you thought on playa for set up if its hot. work early in the AM and then again in the evening, take a break in the mid day.
6. Beer lubricates volunteers.
7. try to make it simple in design. Since dimensional plywood is very exact in size we made a press to stamp out metal clips that screwed into place to hold the sheets in place. The 2x4's stiffened it up overhead to form one big block. Not a single piece of lumber was cut to make ours. When we returned to the default world all of the wood was used in construction.

8. Have sufficient help - nothing like going to playa burning out on your project and not seeing anything else. Sounds like you are on top of pre-fabrication. Thats the key, miniize playa set up time.

9. If operation requires people, solicit as many volunteers beforehand. Gifting some schwag for time always works. We usually have coins pressed. Lasts a lifetime, and relatively cheap, this is the proof pic from the coin shop.

Image

Here are the pics from our proposals, This is the first iteration in plywood, way to complex. and we had people panic in it because there is only one right path out. After finding people crying in it, we finally had to remove a bunch of panels inside to make it easier.

Image

Image

Image

Colored here for contrast all panels were primered off white to protect them and help keep cool. Made a great canvas for graffiti too.
Image

so have fun and look forward to seeing you on playa

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Post by gitnauk » Thu Apr 01, 2010 1:42 pm

Wow. that is quite some maze! Thanks so much for all that info. We couldn't have asked for anyone with experience so close to what we're doing!

Well now, I have many questions... :)

1) What was the name of your maze? Are you bringing it back again?

2) Where did you get funding from?

3) Would you consider rebar with PVC pipes over them to be sturdy? Are there other materials you would recommend to hold up sails, er, cloth?

4) We were planning on having our cloth be about 1.5-2 ft above the ground... we're hoping that a) this will let wind through, and b) it gives people a way out should they want to leave (wouldn't want too many people crying in there). Do you think the gap above the ground will help with wind or escape routes? Maybe we make it an obvious exit somehow.

5) We have yet to decide what to do with it once it's done. Not sure how to recycle it, but that probably depends on the materials we choose. I guess this isn't really a question so much as mulling over a good point you brought up...

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Post by mdmf007 » Thu Apr 01, 2010 8:59 pm

We applied for funding from Bm, but that never came through so we got some of our suppliers to loan us the materials, as long as it was still useable for construction when it came back, and that worked. We also solicited for funds to transport it all.

Anything will work as long as it is anchored.

1. It was called the "Labyrinth" and we scaled it back a little from what the pics above are. That was the full 100x100 design. Couldnt do it all without funding. Id love to do it again, but need support, not financial - just people to help set up and tear down.

2. Got funding from our suppliers at work. in the form of in kind donations. They are still willing to loan the materials again. 3/4 inch plywood is used for flooring, We primed them all in a weekend to seal out dust, when we brought them back, hosed them clean and installed them as sub-flooring. The 2x4's went into walls of a mini storage.

3. Rebar Kicks ass as an anchor, those ribs hold on to playa good. Rebar comes in all sizes, i have seen it up to 2 inches. so look around. Rebar isnt known for its bending strength. Its strength is in tensile (pull) strength. so get thicker than you think you need.

4. Oh yeah, 1.5 -2 feet above ground will alleviate a lot of sail area. Getting off the ground is also an awesome escape route. Sail Area formulas and calculators are all over the internet - punch in the numbers and go from there.

5. My advice is to start now and do it in little bites of your time. It all adds up. See if you can get fabric remnants, and burn it when your done, (all but the PVC)

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Post by TomServo » Sat Apr 03, 2010 8:31 am

gitnauk wrote:Oh some questions for right now:

Any recommendation on materials to use? Right now we're just thinking of trying to get as much free cloth as possible to paint and use as the maze walls. We're scavenging around laundry services and hotels. Other suggestions?

Also, we're trying to decide what's most cost effective yet sturdy to hold up the maze walls. We were thinking rebar and PVC. Or wood? Or metal conduit?

As for painting the maze walls, we're just depending on spray paint unless there are other ideas on that too.
PVC! Have used all three, and its the lightest. And cheapest. Since I don't know the schematics, couldn't tell you how to anchor it, but anchoring is important! Best of luck!

I seem to remember a swimming pool labyrinth, wayyy back when pools were allowed. They set it up, and dropped to near freezing that night. Water was way to cold to go in...even in 100 plus days. Ahh well!
anything worth doing is worth overdoing..

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Post by TomServo » Sat Apr 03, 2010 8:35 am

The art grant deadline, I believe, has passed. Id suggest fundraising parties or concerts.
anything worth doing is worth overdoing..

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How cool is that!

Post by MaitreMaximillian » Sat Apr 03, 2010 12:30 pm

Breaking radio silence to comment ...

This has got to be one of the coolest and most fun ideas !!! PLEASE make this camp happen, because I want to come hang out in the maze!

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