Burning Man Project purchased Fly Ranch for the price of $6.5 million. The funding came from Burners who have been deeply affected by the spirit and principles of Burning Man, and felt called to give back to the community by enabling us to explore the potential of having a year-round home.
All of the donors contributed in the true spirit of Burning Man: in celebration of our gifting principle, there is no quid pro quo, and their gift is to the entire community.
One of our biggest challenges moving forward will be maintaining financial sustainability for Fly Ranch. Some ideas for revenue generation that have come up are:
- Use of the land. Groups could come to the space for events, retreats or visits.
- Recurring gifts and philanthropic support.
- Generating and selling sustainable power.
- Burner cemetery. People could put us in their wills and spend eternity with us!
Suppose that we we were able to get 100K people to give $10 a year or 10K people to give $100 a year that would be $1M. That’s unlikely, but could certainly support a staff and budget. This is one way Green Gulch, Change.org, Water.org, and other mission-driven organizations support themselves. Is it possible that we as a team of two on a new project could raise sufficient funds through the community, website, and donors? We can’t know unless we test it.
What we do know is that this project will be built on trust, and funded on trust as well. To authentically garner support for both small projects and the large ones, people will need to feel connected to the vision of Fly Ranch and included in the process.