Burning Man cancels 2021 festival in Nevada desert

National

FILE – In this Aug. 26, 2002 file photo the sun rises behind a wood and neon statue, the center piece of the annual Burning Man festival north of Gerlach, Nev. Burning Man organizers are considering requiring attendees to prove they’ve been vaccinated for COVID-19 if they move forward with plans to hold this year’s counter-culture festival in the Nevada desert. But they have backed off an earlier announcement that they’d already decided to make shots mandatory, and won’t decide for sure until the end of the month whether the event that was canceled last year due to the pandemic will even take place. (AP Photo/Debra Reid, File)

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Burning Man organizers announced Tuesday they are canceling this summer’s annual counter-culture festival in the Nevada desert for the second year in a row due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The San Francisco-based group posted a video on its web site that said there are too many uncertainties to resolve in time to hold the event as scheduled Aug. 26-Sept. 3 in the Black Rock Desert 100 miles (160 kilometers) north of Reno.

Burning Man CEO Marian Goodell said the “difficult decision” is “based on the best information available to us.”

“We know the need for community has never been stronger. And building community is what Burners do best. We also recognize the pandemic is not over,” she said. “We have decided to focus our energy on building Black Rock City 2022.

The Reno Gazette Journal first reported the news Tuesday on its web site.

The decision was based on a combination of factors, not a single issue, the group said.

“Although here in the United States we may be feeling the weight lifting and the light at the end of the tunnel brightening, we are still in the pandemic, and the uncertainties that need to be resolved are impossible to resolve in the time we have.”

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