- Jim Urquhart/Reuters
One of Burning Man’s luxury camps was ransacked by vandals on Wednesday night, according to a post on the camp’s Facebook page.
The White Ocean camp hosts dozens of free techno-music concerts at its stage on the outskirts of the playa, while also providing lodging and food for its star-studded lineup of DJs.
Sometime during or after another camp’s famous “white party,” where ravers dress in all white, vandals entered the camp. They allegedly pulled and cut electric lines, causing food to spoil, stole personal belongings, glued trailer doors shut, and flooded the camp with 200 gallons of potable water, the Facebook post from Thursday reported.
“We have felt like we’ve been sabotaged from every angle, but last night’s chain of events, while we were all out enjoying our beautiful home, was an absolute and definitive confirmation that some feel we are not deserving of Burning Man,” the post read.
White Ocean was founded in 2013 by DJ Paul Oakenfold and funded by entrepreneurs Timur Sardarov (the son of Russian billionaire and oil magnate Rashid Sardarov) and Oliver Ripley. The pair also launched a New York-based private holding company called Ocean Group.
The camp has drawn criticism over the years for engaging in behavior counter to the “self-reliance” spirit of Burning Man. It’s considered a “plug-and-play” camp, where burners from London, New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco drop in and enjoy luxury accommodations, rather than rough it in a tent on the desert floor.
The Reno Gazette Journal reports that hired help assist the camp with production and concierge services around the cafeteria and lounge space.
White Ocean wrote on Facebook that after notifying Burning Man organizers of the incident, they were told, “it makes sense that you have been sabotaged as you are a closed camp and not welcoming.” Burning Man has a contentious relationship with these plug-and-play camps, as they create an unwanted atmosphere of exclusivity, while also bringing top artists to the desert.
The music-lovers over at White Ocean don’t see it that way.
“We provide one of the most state of the art stages on the playa and feed hundreds of non white ocean [sic] burners a day. Does this qualify as a non welcoming camp with no contribution to Burning Man?” Thursday’s post read.
The group has contacted local authorities to investigate.
Read the full post below: