The Baardskeerder - AfrikaBurn's Newsletter - View web version

 (It's just a little thing, just a kumbaya round the fire with 11,000 of your best friends... shot by Okaroo)

Take it easy, take it slow - but do take it, because life is short, so wring the juice out while you can. Say what now? Yup: it's the downtime of our year, when all across the land crews stare into winter fires and dream fitfully of projects to come and plans to hatch at that little kumbaya we all gather for in the desert. But that doesn't mean all's quiet: far from it - because there's a whole lot going on, and this here newsletter will fill you in about it all.

In this newsletter:

- MOOP MAP 2018!
- SURVEY 2018

 (If your camp or project came up red, well, you've got some splaining to do... thanks to amazing mapmaker Claire Du Plessis for this)   

Hear that? Yep, it's the sound of our Leave No Trace crew returning from the desert, where they spent 3 full weeks in the baking hot sun and gale-force winds, restoring Tankwa Town back to its natural Tankwa Karoo state. Now, it should - should - be very clear that as a Leave No Trace event, where everyone is expected to remove everything they brought in the first place, we shouldn't actually require LNT volunteers. But we do, because, as you can see on the image above, in some areas there were significant traces left behind.

Well played to everyone that scored a green, you rock! To everyone else, well, if you were a registered project, you'll want to review your expectations of getting great placement (or any placement at all) next time. Because that's how this works: a kak LNT rating count has to be considered when next a project gets registered.

Citizens of Tankwa Town, your Moop Map for 2018 has landed - and to view the large zoomable downloadable non-GMO dolphin friendly version:




So you came out of the desert with a yen to be a better human, and make the world a better place? That happens, go with it - and if you're looking for a worthwhile way to channel that wave of positivity you're riding, here's the news: we have an initiative called Spark Grants which enables you, or anyone else, to take a bright idea about making a difference in your community (or someone else's) and make it happen. Here's how it works: you apply, by submitting a project plan that in some way brings one of our 11 principles to life, and our team gets back to you. If your project gets the green light, you get some funds and can make your idea a reality.

Each grant provides R5 000 per project, and in last year's round, 12 different projects across South Africa took flight thanks to their grants, and made some impressive positive impacts out there beyond the Binnekring. Got an idea? Great:


(applications close June 30th, so don't delay: submit sharpish)

                                                                                                                    (Shooter Simon O'Callaghan's superb photos on display at WHAG, Kimberley)


We're on the road! Well, almost - our crew hit the road in a couple week's time, but since our last newsletter some elements of the Blank Canvas Express have already begun to roll out. If you're in Kimberley or surrounds, you might want to get over to the William Humphreys Art Gallery, where an exhibition of AfrikaBurn art and photos is presently on, including a gallery showing of photographer Simon O'Callaghan's amazing shots and also screenings of the sublime 'Copper Ashes' short film by Dewald Brand. The exhibition runs 'til July 18th, so if you're in the area, get over and enjoy.

Next up in the roster of activities taking place in the Northern Cape is a collaborative theatre workshop that will see members of the fabulous Memnoc Collective (who have created and performed with large-scale puppets and masks in the dust over the years) invite members of the Galeshewe community to explore and celebrate the story of their area through storytelling and mask performance and puppeteering. Over the next 6 weeks, the Express crew will be rolling all round the Northern Cape (and also the Free State), offering talks and workshops. Want more info?

Check out the Blank Canvas Express
page on Facebook right here, read more about it on our website - or email


                                                                             (Salt pan at Shompole Ranch, Maasai Mara, Kenya: site of Wild Burn. Thanks to Roamer for the shot)


This dusty burning thing we all do together seems to be something of a wildfire that's catching on, in an impressive manner. You would have heard of Sentella in Mpumalanga, and might have heard of Wildeburn in the Eastern Cape - and there's a chance you might even have heard about Aftermath in Riebeeck-Kasteel, Western Cape. All of these are now into their second or third years, and are doing great work out there by setting communities alight in their own way.

Racking this up to a total of 5 burns in Africa is news from Kenya that the very first
Wild Burn was recently held on the Shompole Ranch in the Maasai Mara, where two tribes - the Maasai and Burners - came together on a glorious salt pan to do that thing we do, in their own way.

Respect to everyone involved in these fresh fires - keep 'em burning!


Who are we all, where do we come from, and what do we do in Tankwa Town (and how do we get there, and back)? The answers to these questions and many more can be found in our Survey - and our 2018 version is ready for you and your (anonymous) data!

Last year's Survey was very revealing (and you can
view the results here) - and we're looking forward to another round of getting an even better picture of the data, because it really helps in terms of planning the next year's event to the best effect. Do we need more toilets? Was the road safe for you? Did you have cause to use our medics, doctors, clinic, Sanctuary, air evacuation - and how was the experience for you? Did you find the art amazing or kak? Should there be more Rangers, and did you have cause to track one down for any reason?

There's only one way to find out the answers:



We love fire (but that should kinda sorta be very clear by now, all things considered) - and we go to great lengths to enable people just like you to play with it, without getting hurt, or hurting anyone else. So it's with a little skip and a jump that we're helping Gregory from Texas (who some of you might have met out in the dust) make some noise about his free Flame Effects Workshop. He plans to educate you - or anyone else - about how to use propane to create wild flame effects, safely. Interested? In Cape Town? Lekker, here's the detail: 

When: Saturday July 7th, 9am - 1pm
Where: AfrikaBurn HQ (8 Junction Road, Salt River, Cape Town)

Gregory's calling out for some materials to make the workshop as productive as possible:
- A full set of wrenches from 5 - 28mm
- 2 x adjustable crescent wrenches
- 3 x rolls of Teflon tape
- Hacksaws
- 2 x sheets of fine grit sandpaper
- 3m of 1/4 copper tubing
- 1m copper wire

To join the Flame Effect Workshop whatsapp group,
click here

Since 2015, we've had the opportunity to take to the streets of Cape Town and bring a slice of our Tankwa Town magic alive. It's called Streetopia, and we don't mind saying it's a bit of amazing - and it's on again this year!

It all happens on the streets of Obs again on Saturday December 1st - and as always, it's 100% free gratis and mahala. Stay tuned for updates on what the day has in store - or step up and contact if you have a project, artwork, workshop, performance or activity you'd like to add to the mix and have included in the event guide. 

Check out the
Streetopia website for more info about how the event works, and where.

Not quite - seen the amazing illustrations that a bunch fo different people created & sent in this year? No? Head this way to check them out - and show those doodlers and artists some love, their creations are fantastic!

Travis Lyle
Minister of Information

Hey! Still there? Lekker. In case you didn't make it to the Town hall last week, we have news: it was a great session of robust discussions, which ended with a damn fine little urban burn in honour of Larry Harvey, who passed away recently. Yes, we burned the Man, on the same day 32 years since Larry and a small bunch of Cacophonists and bystanders burned the first man on Baker Beach. Our man Tim was there, with his camera, he caught the flames in action. Check that out right here.


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