Burning Man's organisers have announced that this year's edition of the annual event in the Nevada desert will not go ahead.
The cancellation of the festival is a result of the ongoing uncertainty around the COVID-19 pandemic and makes this the second consecutive year that the event has not been able to go ahead.
The San Francisco-based group that organise the Black Rock City festival posted a video on their website on Tuesday, April 27th, stating that said there are currently too many uncertainties to press forward with plans to hold the event as scheduled from August 26th to September 3rd. Burning Man CEO Marian Goodell said the “difficult decision” was taken “based on the best information available to us”.
She continued: “We know the need for community has never been stronger. And building community is what Burners do best. We also recognise the pandemic is not over. We have decided to focus our energy on building Black Rock City 2022.”
A statement released by organisers added: "“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."
The festival, which has been taking place for 35 years, usually draws a crowd of around 80,000, though organisers had been considering capping the number of attendees at this year's event at 69,000 had it gone ahead. The team behind the event was also considering mandatory vaccinations for all who attended.
This year's Burning Man had originally been intended to take place under the theme of Terra Incógnita, which translates to "unknown land", as was announced last month. It was changed later that month, however, to The Great Unknown, due to concerns over the original name's "colonial history".