Karma Chickens Camp at Burning Man

Karma Chickens will at Burning Man 2013 at Desiderata & 7:45.

  • 2013 Camp Planning Documents
  • Principles
  • Procedures
  • Activities (Interactivity)
  • Camp (Physical Layout)
  • Recipe for the Flaming Cluck, our signature cocktail
  • Pictures of Karma Chickens at Previous Years' Burning Mans
  • To bring up new camp business or camp issues with the Karma Chickens, send an email to org@karmachickens.org

  • 2013 Camp Planning Documents

    Karma Chickens 2013 Leave No Trace Plan
    Karma Chickens 2013 Camp Layout Plan
    Karma Chickens were at Burning Man 2012 on C at 7:45.

    Camp Principles

    We encourage adherence by our camp members to the Burning Man Project's Ten Principles.

    We expect all camp members to be self-reliant. Our camp provides shared infrastructure for our camp members, including (in 2013) a porta-john, a covered dome with seating, a shower, a gray-water evaporation system, and solar power for camp services and charging cell phones. We do not, however, provide water nor food for our camp. Of course we share water, food, and drinks all week.

    We also strongly believe in Leaving No Trace, and that means we avoid costume, structure, and art car decoration that can easily become MOOP, like sequins, glitter, and feathers.

    We expect every campmate to help build infrastructure and individual shelters. We celebrate seeking out opportunities to help, and helping without being asked.

    Camp Procedures

    Camp Size

    Camp membership for a given year is in a first come-first serve style, with those who plan ahead being in first. We provide a layout for camp when applying, so we can't be open-ended after the camp application deadline. We hold room for 4 people for extra special/far away guests. Of course plans change, things get complicated, but we expect to discuss changes with the camp since it makes camp cramped, changes the layout, and otherwise effects everyone in camp.

    How we add new people to camp

    Members from previous years suggest new people on the email list, including how the new members will be involved in camp. If, after 3 days, nobody objects, the new peeps are probably added. If someone does object, then a discussion in private occurs to figure out what the problem is and how to resolve it. If you don't know any of us, you can also try emailing our organizational group at org@karmachickens.org.

    Camp Dues

    Camp Dues for 2013 are $80 to $100, based on the member's ability to pay. A quick breakdown: $40 is for the rental and cleanout of the potty in camp, $20 is storage/transport of camp infrastructure, $20 goes to the solar array, the last $20 is for each year's annual projects and miscellaneous, like the new metal shower in 2012. Every camp member is expected to pay dues, though if someone has a real cash flow problem, we are happy to discuss it. We prioritize participation if our accounting seems sound.

    Camp Communication

    Camp communication is primarily done via an email list. Backup communication is via the FB group and a cell phone text group. The text group is primarily to be used while people are getting together todo stuff (load up/unload/caravan/get into the storage, etc).

    Camp Activities

    Karma Chickens operate in a spirit of sharing knowledge, experience, and fun. We are a diverse group of people with wide-ranging interests including members of theme camps from previous years. We offer workshops, lessons, and opportunities to participate in joining together in voice, skill, and motion. In 2013, we plan to hold the following events (members have volunteered for):

    In the past, members of Karma Chickens:

    Karma Chickens Camp on the Playa

    Structures and Layout

    The Karma Chickens camp centers around our 25-foot EMT conduit dome, covered in hand-made colorful shade panels. Our dome is secured with rebar stakes. On top of a large soft carpet in the center of the dome, we keep several lounge chairs and a few tables. This is our space for conducting workshops and classes. (In previous years we placed a computerized lighting system on dome struts, but have retired this system.)

    Behind the dome, in previous years, we stored some food and cooked some meals in a 15x15 foot quonset hut made from PVC pipes, a large tarp, and rebar. We also have erected a second dome built like the first, and used it to hold Pillow Fighting tournaments. Whether we build either of these two common areas depends on camp desire and event planning.

    We place our shower and gray-water evaporation area about twenty feet behind the dome. The shower in 2010 was a raised platform with shower curtains (based on the Nosefish shower design) that drains into our gray-water system. Gray water from the shower and cooking emptied into three buckets connected by pipes for settling solids, then recirculated onto a large evaporation mesh.

    Our 1500 watts of solar panels charge a 10K watt-hour battery system and are backed up by a quiet gasoline generator inside a plywood baffle. We use our battery bank to power a chest freezer, camp lights, a swamp cooler, our evap-o-tron, our sound system, and a CPAP (sleep apnea) machine. Here are some specifics.

    Some Karma Chickens camp in their RVs and the others camp in canopies and tents ranging from the "CostCo Barn" 10' by 20' footprint to family-size 10' by 10' tents to 8' by 6' personal tents.

    RVs and SUVs line the sides and back of the camp and other cars line the sides. We make sure to have friendly walkways to other adjacent camps. Some of our campmates also bring their own smoking and barbecuing grills and cook near their tents.

    The Flaming Cluck

    The Flaming Cluck Recipe — easy as 1-2-3

    The Karma Chickens once hosted a "Classic Cocktail" hour, and one of the drinks listed in the What, Where, When was the Gimlet, a mix of gin and Rose's Lime Juice. Some nice citrus-y sourness to cut the playa in the back of our throats, a bit of sweetness to balance the sourness, and of course, alcohol to help move the party along. Sounds like the perfect drink for Burning Man!

    Unfortunately, the person bringing the lime juice was delayed, and so we had to improvise. We had no lime juice, but we did have lemon juice. Chip replaced the gin with vodka and the lime juice with lemon juice, and dubbed it the Flaming Cluck:

    1/2 oz. simple syrup*

    1 oz. lemon juice (we used ReaLemon)

    1-1/2 oz. vodka

    (Those of you who are mixologists will recognize this as a Vodka Sour.) The drink was a huge hit, and we immediately started making it by the pitcher. All you need to remember to scale the recipe upwards is one part simple syrup, two parts lemon juice, and three parts vodka. Or, even more simply, just remember the basic "sour" recipe:

    "One sweet, two sour, three strong"

    The "strong," of course, is the alcohol. You can use the same "1-2-3" proportions for whiskey sours, gimlets, even margaritas!

    * If you aren't familiar with simple syrup, it's really nothing more than concentrated sugar water. The nice thing about simple syrup when mixing drinks is that the sugar is already pre-dissolved. Simple syrup can usually be found with the sugar and syrups in the supermarket or in the mixers section of liquor stores, where it is also known as "bar syrup." Simple syrups made from cane sugar are preferable to ones made from high fructose corn syrup. You can also make your own:

    Simple Syrup Recipe

    Bring two cups of water to a boil. Turn down the heat and stir in two cups of granulated sugar and continue to stir until the sugar is completely dissolved. Remove from heat and let it cool to room temperature. Then put it in a clean glass bottle or jar and store in the fridge. It should keep for at least a few weeks. 

    Memories from Previous Years' Burning Mans. Men. Burnings Man. Whatever.

    The Karma Chickens at Burning Man 2010
    Yes, we are chickens with bunny ears. What of it?

    The Karma Chickens main dome with banner

    Open acoustic jam (2009)

    Chip and Linda at Dolomite's Balboa Swing Class (2009)

    A collaborative canvas

    The Karma Chicken Camp in 2006

    Our painted banner we hang on the dome

    After Burning Man 2006, the MOOP MAP showed us in the green at 4:10 and Guess.

    Sari tying workshop

    Modified Nosefish shower design and graywater evaporation fountain

    2010 Power and Water
    400W of solar panels, 4 KWh of batteries,
    "flying saucer" evaporator, shower

    Some of the chickens before heading to the Waffle ("Uchronia")

    Computerized interactive dome lighting