Kids & Teenagers at Burning Man

Questions, answers, tips & tricks for newbies and veterans alike

Kids at Burning Man?

Yes
344
60%
No
234
40%
 
Total votes: 578

awibs
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Postby awibs » Tue Apr 06, 2004 8:31 pm

oh yes.... one more thought......

a friend of mine, 19, narrowly escaped becoming a father a few months ago. he said to me "i can't deal with this yet! i'm only 19! i'm too immature, i'm in no place to be reproducing!" to which i replied "that revalation might've mattered before you chose to have sex. now it's too late, and you're not getting any wiser by freaking out about it. when shit happens before you're ready, you just have to work with what you've got."

so i apologize if my earlier post came across as "look at me, i'm 20 and *so* mature, and they're pratically just as mature me." i rather mean..... "look at me, i'm 20 and everyone has expected me to deal with this shit called life for years..... i'm not that much more clever than they are, so if i can manage with what little i've got.... so can they."
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"Share water, darlings!"

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JoLo
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Postby JoLo » Wed Apr 07, 2004 7:48 am

awibs, you're so right.

If someone older than you assumes you're immature simply because of your age, it probably speaks more to their level of maturity than your own.

The older I get, the more I realize that people (in general) just don't grow up emotionally and spiritually. Sure knowledge grows, and maybe even intelligence, but I've met wise 15 year olds and juvenile 50 year olds.

Clearly you got your head on straight, so don't worry about how old you are - just do the most you can with your experience.

BTW: I love the advice you gave your friend. I think it applies to all people of all ages in all situations.

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Zane5100
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Postby Zane5100 » Wed Apr 07, 2004 8:58 am

theCryptofishist wrote:
Zane5100 wrote:
III wrote:if nudity isn't about sex, why are you getting an erection?


...because you have "issues."
Too many free samples of new pharmasuticles.


...or not enough.
middle-aged, wannabe-hipster, dilettante

awibs
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Postby awibs » Sat Apr 10, 2004 10:26 pm

"you're only young once, but you can remain immature indefinately" :D

saw that on a greeting card with a picture of old people playing hopskotch.
breathe deep seek peace

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"Share water, darlings!"

dingo
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Postby dingo » Sun Apr 11, 2004 1:07 pm

Slightly off topic. I run an open bar at BM. I remember last year around 9am serving some drinks, and then realizing later that my last patrons were probably 15 or so. I was just ending my shift, so I was a bit, um, out of fricken mind. Is that something I should worry about. (i.e. serving underage)? The out of my mind part I can handle.

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Bob
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Postby Bob » Sun Apr 11, 2004 4:41 pm

...I run an open bar at BM. I remember last year around 9am serving some drinks, and then realizing later that my last patrons were probably 15 or so. I was just ending my shift, so I was a bit, um, out of fricken mind. Is that something I should worry about. (i.e. serving underage)?...


My... word problems... I hear Misotopia is a Fifth Degree Mensan... is it considered worrisome to contribute to delinquency before nine in the morning, Miso? or just in bad taste?
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RouseMouse
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Postby RouseMouse » Fri May 28, 2004 2:41 pm

being a 40-something from west of denver I was drawen to the post ...
first , BRC is not on the beach , it's fine dust , not sand , so be sure to bri9ng a box of good (2 strap fine particulate grade) dust masks , the first year there (2001) I slept in a dust mask as the dust blew in through the wall screens on the tent and dusted my bed , and everything else ...
also push the water on them .
besides that , unless they grew up in a white formica box , they shoulld do fine and provide plenty of entertainment while you watch them try to explain all they saw to Grandma !
but then , what do I know ,, never had kids ..
have fun
:wink:
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pokiedot
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Postby pokiedot » Sat May 29, 2004 12:45 pm

Blonde Iguana wrote:III, I'll drop him off at your camp first thing for the deflowering...is there somewhere I can go to get re-flowered?


last year we had the space virgins, who would 'revirginize' you... don't know if they'll be there this year.

but in response to your original post; the playa will test and try any relationship. although it's mostly geared towards couples, the relationship survival guide (here: http://www.burningman.com/preparation/e ... ships.html) has some good tips.

it sounds like your relationship with your kids is pretty secure, and that you're open minded, not only about what your experience will be like, but about what their experience will be like. as long as you're confident in their judgements, you'll be fine.

also, just a iside-note, talkabouts and walkie talkies are not as reliable as you'd think out there. don't just bring regular ol' walkie talkies, get the 'spensive talkabout kind. but even then, expect to be battling it out with thousands of other people using the same channel, being out of range, etc.

it sounds like you'll all be fine.. you'll all have a great time, don't worry! just read your survival manual, and have them read it to, be prepared and it'll be great!

-josie

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Apollonaris Zeus
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Postby Apollonaris Zeus » Sat May 29, 2004 7:37 pm

dingo wrote:Slightly off topic. I run an open bar at BM. I remember last year around 9am serving some drinks, and then realizing later that my last patrons were probably 15 or so. I was just ending my shift, so I was a bit, um, out of fricken mind. Is that something I should worry about. (i.e. serving underage)? The out of my mind part I can handle.


In many countries of Europe there are no drinking age laws!

My first drink occured at the advance age of 6 or so at the dinner table with my family during dinner- a glass of wine watered down with grape soda!

Today some fucking social worker would have placed me in a foster home and perhaps molested my a foster parent!

Some free country, Aye!

At the age of 16 and 18, there's notting at BM that they haven't done already I'm sure if not its about fucking time to grow up.

A II Z


Oh to be free again, free again, dear lord to be free again!

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stuart
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Postby stuart » Tue Jun 01, 2004 11:07 am

At the age of 16 and 18, there's notting at BM that they haven't done already



doood,

there is shit going on a burning man that I, at the age of 36, have not done.

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Chai Guy
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Postby Chai Guy » Tue Jun 01, 2004 12:02 pm

there is shit going on a burning man that I, at the age of 36, have not done.


Hahahah! Nice Stuart!

I remember feeling a little jaded about two years ago that maybe I had seen everything at Burning Man and it was time to stop going. I was walking back to my camp down the Esplanade when something went flying by my face so, close I couldn't even see what it was. I looked to my left and there was a guy bent over with his pants around his ankles and another guy was inserting bottle rockets into his ass and lighting them. I then realized that I had not, in fact, seen everything, but then I started to question if I really wanted to.

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theCryptofishist
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Postby theCryptofishist » Tue Jun 01, 2004 12:11 pm

dingo wrote:Slightly off topic. I run an open bar at BM. I remember last year around 9am serving some drinks, and then realizing later that my last patrons were probably 15 or so. I was just ending my shift, so I was a bit, um, out of fricken mind. Is that something I should worry about.
Yes, any laws about corrupting minors or serving them would apply.

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Apollonaris Zeus
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Postby Apollonaris Zeus » Tue Jun 01, 2004 11:44 pm

Chai Guy wrote:
there is shit going on a burning man that I, at the age of 36, have not done.


A II Z- That I'm sure of! and of course your not stupid either!

"I looked to my left and there was a guy bent over with his pants around his ankles and another guy was inserting bottle rockets into his ass and lighting them. I then realized that I had not, in fact, seen everything, but then I started to question if I really wanted to."


Shit you haven't done the Bottle Rockets up the butt trick Yet! Help couterize the hemiroid

Yes stupid human tricks abound at BM! But the important fact is that when it comes to SEX and DRUGS! Which at the old age of 16 is something most normal kids have already experience! Hey they're from CO! Nanu Nanu and sweet Columbine!

After that its Slave Sex Camp with underage Crack whores or Abu Ghraib Camp of Pain!

But most likely they'll just hang out at center camp and make beads just like summer camp, drink coffee and talk about movies!

Hey that's what I do!

after a full night of underage crack whores and masocistic sex acts!

Helps the welts come down!

A II Z

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Last Real Burner
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Do I hear 5...

Postby Last Real Burner » Tue Jun 01, 2004 11:58 pm

What a neat trick. The quick and easy way to remove the hair from your ass.

mr smith
"Do you know what happened to the boy who got everything he wished for? - He lived happily ever after".

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'stine
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Separation system?

Postby 'stine » Tue Jun 08, 2004 1:24 pm

Is there a way to label the folks under 21 so that us folks looking back at 21 who may be impaired in one fashion or another can be cognizant that we may be contributing to the deliquency/education of a minor BEFORE we sully them?

I went to a massive camp out once where everyone got a color coded laminated card to wear. The colors reflected whether the owner was underage, single and available, not single but available for the weekend, not available, and preferred animals to people (joke). Helped some of us avoid trouble and others to find a direct route to it.

'stine[/i]

folkjoy
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Kids & Teenagers at Burning Man

Postby folkjoy » Wed Jun 09, 2004 12:33 pm

I was looking for those with experience possibly with bringing younger kids there, or pros and cons of it.
~folkjoy

Icepack
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Postby Icepack » Wed Jun 09, 2004 1:30 pm

There is a whole theme camp for families called Kidsville. It is usually located in a quiet section near the Alternative Energy Zone. There are also tips on the Burning Man website about how to plan for bringing the kids with you.

I don't have kids myself, but things that come to mind is that an RV would be great. Keep the kids comfy and bring things from home so they are happy and don't feel like aliens in an adult crazy world. Find a place to camp that isn't too loud so they can get some sleep at night, and try to keep them cool and comfortable during the day. Make sure they are well protected from the sun and stay hydrated. Common sense.

I think there are a lot of parenting resources if you look around for them.

muley
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kids

Postby muley » Wed Jun 09, 2004 2:03 pm

My wife and I are nudists and have no problem with kids and nudity BUT burningman is a lot more than that,its dusty,dirty,hot,dry,loud,drugs,drunks and I dont think any child will gain anything from being there. But thats just me.

dragonfly Jafe
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Postby dragonfly Jafe » Wed Jun 09, 2004 2:50 pm

I look at it kind of like I do when I see a kid rock climbing a 5.10 face - WOW! I hope that kid's parents are around somewhere.

Burningman is somewhat dangerous, and takes a certain set of skills to safely participate. Just like rock climbing. Yes, you can "observe" from a safer environment, but not participate. If a kid is at Burningman, they will require either a really advanced set of life-skills -OR- very attentive parents, or trouble will probably result.

The BMllc is, IMHO, encouraging kids to participate to show how "safe" and how "normal" Burningman is. I think this is a mistake - think how much publicity will result when the first "underage fatality" occurs.

I think kids should be left at home with the grandparents for a week. YMMV. regards, Jafe

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Postby dragonfly Jafe » Wed Jun 09, 2004 2:54 pm

I look at it kind of like I do when I see a kid rock climbing a 5.10 face - WOW! I hope that kid's parents are around somewhere.

Burningman is somewhat dangerous, and takes a certain set of skills to safely participate. Just like rock climbing. Yes, you can "observe" from a safer environment, but not participate. If a kid is at Burningman, they will require either a really advanced set of life-skills -OR- very attentive parents, or trouble will probably result.

The BMllc is, IMHO, encouraging kids to participate to show how "safe" and how "normal" Burningman is. I think this is a mistake - think how much publicity will result when the first "underage fatality" occurs.

I think kids should be left at home with the grandparents for a week. YMMV. regards, Jafe

actiongrl
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Postby actiongrl » Wed Jun 09, 2004 4:44 pm

>I dont think any child will gain anything from being there

I utterly and completely disagree. What's needed is responsible parenting.

Ask some of the parents in Kidsville whether their kids benefitted from being in the most expressive place there is.

I know lots and lots of Burning Families and those kids gained a GREAT deal from being there. The Shiek likes to tell the story that his son Max has been attending for years, and the only effect he can really report is that Max graduated high school early and now attends college classes.

Yes, you have to be an attentive parent, and it's not for every kid. But the parents I know who bring their kids to the event have some seriously well-adjusted children, and the kids have a fantastic time. Ever seen a 12 year old girl spin fire? I have, and at 12, when most girls' confidence is plummeting with every turn of a teen magazine's page, it was powerful to see her so proud of an accomplishment and so revered by the grownups around her. She was beaming. I'd much rather see her at Burning Man being guided through the *real* world by her parents than sitting home at Grandma's watching a Mary Kate and Ashley movie...wouldn't you?

Without children (and old people) do you really have a society?

If you don't think it'd be right for your own kids you're probably right, but when I have kids I want to be able to bring them to Burning Man and show them how the world ought to be, and if I'm willing to take the responsibility (no, I won't let her wander off alone and accidentally wind up in a sex camp, just as I would not do at home and let her wander into a strip club...) then I think I should have that chance.

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Silver 2
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Postby Silver 2 » Wed Jun 09, 2004 6:36 pm

My son was 15 my first Burn and anything that dad does around that age is not cool so he has never been to any burner functions. I have on the other hand observed kids growing up in the burner culture and generally have a good impression. The kids at kidsville seemed to be having a good time and the shared responsiblities let the the parents get out and away. The only iffy thing I saw was a 4-5 year old getting what I and a Ranger thought was too close to the fire on Burn night, we almost knocked each other down getting ready to snatch the little bugger but the kid warmed his hands and walked away.

One of my friends did tell me that she had to go and talk to her kid's teacher after the assignment "What I did on my summer vacation". The teacher seemed to have a problem with a report that included: naked people, fire spinning/dancing, Mom on stilts and a big boat that rolled.
I like playing with fire.

muley
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Postby muley » Wed Jun 09, 2004 7:03 pm

A young childs health should AWAYS come first and 7 days of living on the playa is not healthy for any child and I dont think any parent who really cares for there kid would bring one to BM

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BAS
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Postby BAS » Wed Jun 09, 2004 8:58 pm

How old is the child in question? There is quite a difference, I would assume, between a newborn and a 17 year old (still a child from a legal standpoint, unless waived into adult court)....

Then again I haven't yet been to Burning Man, and don't have any children to speak of.
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Do things that have never been done."
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Captain Goddammit
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Postby Captain Goddammit » Wed Jun 09, 2004 9:23 pm

I've long had a strong anti-kids-at-BM stance, but have to admit that Actiongrl has said things to make me wonder... some good stuff there...

I personally agree with Actiongrl, but my objection is liability-related. BM is a very adult environment, and the presence of children I think is likely to result in the "toning down" of the event, more policing, more rules to "protect the children". If we can avoid that, I haven't any objection. I was exposed to many adult situations as a kid myself, and we all know how well I turned out.
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Chai Guy
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Postby Chai Guy » Wed Jun 09, 2004 10:20 pm

1. I suggest attending the event on your own before considering bringing your children. As much as has been written about the event, it's just something that you have to experience to know what it's really like. Some people love it, other people hate it. At any rate you will be in a much better position to evaluate your child's abilities to deal with the event, and your desire to be there for them as a guide after you have a year under your belt.

2. If you are a single parent and the child's daddy or mommy is around I suggest you get his or her written permission to take them to the event. There have been several threads in the past discussing custody battles where the simple fact that they had brought them to the event was used against them in court.

3. Before attending I suggest taking your child to a smaller regional event, like a Decompression Party or a Beach Burn. It's less of a commitment and while it's not to the same scale, or even close, you will encounter some of the same people and behaviors and it will give you both a chance to decide if you want to hang out with these people in the middle of the desert.

4. If you and your child decide that making the trip is the right thing, sit down and have an open and honest discussion about boundaries, and safety issues. Make sure you give him/her the ability to say "This isn't working for me" for whatever reason and allow him/her to pull up stakes and end the trip early. Discuss the importance of drinking water, sunscreen and everything else covered in the survival guide (read it together). Show them how to navigate the city and how to find your camp, and what to do if they need help (find a Ranger). Establish meeting times (yes, I think they should wear a watch), and consider a 2-way radio to stay in touch.


Of all these though, I think #1 is the most important. In fact I had a friend that was considering bringing her kids the first year and then decided against it (though she has been several years since). Last year her oldest child asked "When do I get to go to the Black Rock City?" Her reply was "When you can buy your own ticket and drive yourself, and even then I'm not telling you where I'm camped!"

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Postby jennygreentooth » Wed Jun 09, 2004 10:54 pm

Without children (and old people) do you really have a society?


i agree completely with you. personally, my issues with children at burning man stems from

A) parents who are BM-virgins bringing kids. Come yourself before so you can make the correct decision for yourself~

B) parents who neglect their children at the event, or are too inebriated to make good parenting decisions.

C) parents who "drag" children who dont like BM, or are even disturbed by it- because they didnt look at other options.

D) parents who underestimate the HUGE responsibilty it is to bring children to a 7 day survivalist event. it is these participants who may change the rules for all others, creating a need to suppress freedoms adults might otherwise have.

this may suggest i am "anti-kid, but actually i am PRO-youth at BM- as long as those conditions are met. Children vary as much as adults in character, habits, and interests- make sure your child wants to be there, not just you wanting them to.

i dont have children, but i'm pretty sure when (if) i do, i'll bring mine at some point.. if it still exists (crosses fingers in hope). :wink:

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Bob
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Postby Bob » Thu Jun 10, 2004 12:34 am

folkjoy wrote:I was looking for those with experience possibly with bringing younger kids there, or pros and cons of it.


Might depend on your collective outdoor/camping/road trip/cooking/theater/summer camp/country living experience. Weatherwise, it's no worse than NY in July.

Check the main website re: Kids Camp, First Timers' info, old issues of the Survival Guide & Black Rock Gazetter, and regional mailing lists in your area; search the Image Gallery for [kids] & whatnot, yada yada yada.

http://images.burningman.com/index.cgi?q_keyword=kids

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folkjoy
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Postby folkjoy » Thu Jun 10, 2004 9:30 am

Thank you so much for the replies. I've never been to bm and figured I'd go first without my son(4yrs) anyway, but wanted to feel out what the kid climate was.

He's been camping with me since he was a baby and we do festivals and whatnot so I think eventually it will be an experience we share together.

I'm a very concious parent and I don't do drugs , btw. I also hate seeing little kids dragged to festivals where they are not supervised or where the parent is out for their experience, rather than facilitating a family experience.

Thanks for the replies! I'll probably be around this board quite often. I've been checking out bm sites for a few years. My girlfriend and I are thinking of going next year.
~folkjoy

mary jane
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kids at BM

Postby mary jane » Thu Jun 10, 2004 9:56 am

Whenever i see kids at burning man i can help but think, how different my young perspective on life would have been if i had an opportunity to go to burningman as a kid. Growing up in a small town that was culturely in limbo, with not too much creative stimulation, i think i would have thrived in the BM environment. just like adults who choose not to participate in drugs or drinking but still love BM, kids can derive fun from all the art and meeting all kinds of people, dressing up, crafting, etc!
mj


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