Board of Supervisors President David Chiu will take a day off from his busy mayoral campaign next week to attend Burning Man, which he'll fly into on a small private airplane along with Sup. Jane Kim and spend less than 24 hours on the ground.
"For several years, I've wanted to visit the Black Rock Desert to learn about how Burning Man is building 21st Century community, creating art, and fostering sustainability," Chiu told the Guardian after we learned about the trip from several sources.
Black Rock City LLC, the company that stages Burning Man -- an arts and cultural extravaganza that began in 1986 on San Francisco's Baker Beach and now takes place in Nevada's Black Rock Desert -- has long sought to woo influential city officials to the event, offering free tickets to elected officials and some board aides. With this year's move into a new Mid-Market headquarters space and creation of the new Burning Man Project nonprofit, both the LLC and City Hall have more reason than ever to seek stronger ties.
Sup. Eric Mar, who attended his first Burning Man last year, will be returning this year on his own to spent most of the week on the playa. By contrast, Chiu and Kim will fly into an airport set up at the event on the morning of Sept. 1 -- accompanied by activists Sunny Angulo and Dan Nguyen-Tan, who will essentially staff them during their visit -- stay in accommodations set up by supporters and the LLC, and fly out the next morning.