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Land update: We’re on schedule to host Saguaro Man 2020 on new land

The AZ Burners Land Team on the ground in Cochise County. Photo credit: Armella.

AZ Burners has submitted a full-price cash offer on 80 acres of land outside Willcox in Cochise County in Southeast Arizona. 

We expect the transaction to close by March 1, which puts us on schedule to hold Saguaro Man on new land May 13-17, 2020. 

We’ve been in contact with Cochise County throughout the process. We’ve been positively received by the county and do not expect permits or regulations to be an issue in acquiring the land and modifying it to suit our needs. No permitting is required to cut roads on the property.

If the transaction does not close by March 1, we’ll consider alternative options including Holly and Harlan’s land, that hosted Saguaro Man in 2019 and AZ Decompression in 2018. As always, we are grateful to Holly and Harlan for providing us flexibility as we search for a permanent home for AZ Burners events.

Okay, so what’s next?

We will have another official land announcement when the transaction is complete OR at the March 1 checkpoint, whichever comes first. 

Ticket sales and volunteer signups will not begin until the land transaction is complete. Because the event is being held later in May, the projected timeline aligns with past Saguaro Man events. 

Art grant applications are currently open through February 16. Apply now. 

If you have questions or concerns, please email Arizona@BurningMan.org.

How did we get to this point?

In January 2019, a team of 10 community leaders answered a public call-for-volunteers to research WHAT land type and location could best serve AZ Burners and HOW AZ Burners could best organize, purchase, and protect the land.

The team included Cookie, Sharkie, Ruvi, Scotto, qqtpie, Naked Mike, Little Red, Sunny, Dad, Ranger Housecall, and Juan Carlos Flamand (“Ranger Good Start”). Additionally, community input was solicited and gathered at multiple public and digital forums throughout 2019 and early 2020. 

In January 2020, members of the Land Team made multiple site visits to assess the suitability of various parcels for community events. The Land Team reached consensus on the suitability of 80 acres in the general vicinity of Willcox. 

Following this decision, a member of the Land Team who is a professional realtor began the process of acquiring the land.  We estimate land costs to be in the ~$25,000 range including closing costs. 

During this period, the Land Team secured private funding in the form of a loan from community member(s) who wish to remain anonymous. The details of the transaction, including land cost and repayment schedule, will be made public once the purchase contracts are signed. We expect the loan to be completely repaid within one year. 

And how is this all going down?

The following details are intended to clarify how this will all get done. If you have questions, please email Arizona@BurningMan.org. 

– Land will be purchased and owned by Arizona Artistic  Limited Liability Corporation (LLC). The LLC’s board members are the Burning Man Project’s official Regional Contact Pam (“qqtpie”) Whitney and community leader Tim (“Serpico”) Grenenbacher. Land Team member Juan C. Flamand (“Ranger Good Start”) will be added to the LLC’s board and together develop an interim land management plan.  The Board will solicit and incorporate community input in developing the initial charter for the land.

– Arizona Artistic LLC was formed as a not-for-profit LLC to streamline the land purchase process. The plan is that by the end of 2020, Arizona Artistic LLC will be converted to non-profit status.

– Payment for the land will be provided by Arizona Artistic Conflagurators LLC (not to be confused with Arizona Artistic LLC). Its board members are Ron (“Buddha”) Russell, Pam (“qqtpie”) Whitney, and Ruvi (“Ruvi”) Wijesuriya. 

– Arizona Artistic Conflagurators LLC is a not-for-profit entity that invests all revenue into art grants, event operations, local charities, etc., and carries no balance from one fiscal year to the next.

– Saguaro Man, AZ Decompression, and other events will pay rent to  Arizona Artistic LLC to use the land. The rent will cover land maintenance and upkeep costs as well as long term improvements.

If you have questions, please email Arizona@BurningMan.org.