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PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2015 3:37 pm 
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In order to help fund our eventual land purchase, I'm proposing we increase PDF ticket prices to $65 each. That would be an increased cost of $15 per ticket per burn. That additional funding would go only towards a land purchase and nothing else.

It's been years since PDF boosted its ticket prices. I think the last time was in 2007. Other burns in the area charge much more, like Freeform, where a single ticket costs $100, Wickerman's highest priced ticket is $75, Firefly charges $80 per ticket and an additional $30 for a parking pass, Transformus tickets are $120. Even at $65, PDF appears to be a bargain compared to other burns on the east coast.

The BoD is planning on a land purchase by 2017. Any additional funds we raise now will help keep our mortgage price down.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:14 pm 
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Has there been any indication from the BOD, and particularly the BOD treasurer, that such an increase is necessary to meeting our goals?

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:44 pm 
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I understand the need to accumulate monies for a land purchase. I am one of the few who have benefited from a hardship ticket. I enjoy the Summer and don't enjoy much of the other seasons in the Northeast. I eke out my life and seldom if ever give myself a treat. PDF is my one Summer gift it is my birthday present, Christmas and all other holidays rolled into one weekend.Could there be some sort of middle ground, perhaps making he ticket $60 if the BOD decides it needs an increase?


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:55 pm 
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Strongly opposed. The last ticket increase was to set funds aside for land purchase. If our current price covers event costs and helps with the purchase fund, that should be sufficient. As for other burns... they charge too much. Thats why many of us don't go to those burns. If we raise the PDF ticket price we may see a drop in attendance, and the end result will be nothing gained. Personally, when I buy my ticket, my hope is it covers event expenses. I have my own mortgage to pay... I am not interested in paying PDFs mortgage too. Unless of course ticket prices will go down once PDF buys land, since we will no longer be 'saving' money for a purchase. Is that going to happen? If so, then raising the price now would be our investment and we'll get something back by way of lower prices in the future. If not, then we are asking people to pay now for something they may never benefit from. If extra funds are needed, run an indiegogo campaign. Those who have a long term vested interest in a land purchase will contribute. Those who don't, won't.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 6:47 am 
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Were we to raise ticket prices, I think I would rather see those funds earmarked for community art grants before putting more funds into an already flush land fund account.

That said, $50 for a long holiday weekend burn isn't just one of the better values in terms of burns, it's cheaper than a lot of campgrounds. I could see $65 being a reasonable increase if it were going to something of more near term value.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 9:17 am 
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My vote in a redundant No to increase ticket prices for land purchase. I supported the first increased a few years ago for this purpose and land purchase has not yet materialized. We have enough in the bank for this purpose. If more is needed let's run a crowd funding campaign instead. The land we are in right now does not merit the increase, and putting $15 more into the bank for the purpose of finding land when we already are supposed to be using the $15 increase of years ago and that land has not been found yet. That will be a $30 increase on ticket price for the sole purpose of land purchase. It is not fair to keep asking more from the community and participants without first fulfilling commitments. I don't agree and I will not support any increase on ticket price until PDF moves to a different location.

I do not support this proposed increase until PDF is held in a different location, i will not continue putting money in the bank until commitments have been fulfilled. The venue we are in does not merit this increase, and increasing prices for a promise of land is unfair since the first promise is still up in the air.

Let's find the land first, see what is needed, obtain estimates for those improvements, then we can move on to figure out how we'll pay for those improvements. I will not support an increase on ticket prices for something that is immaterial and not tangible at this time.

let's stop asking for more until we have something concrete in our hands. One step at a time: find land first, figure out what is needed next.


Last edited by eucaris on Fri Jun 26, 2015 10:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 9:52 am 
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Land prices are going up, up, up. If we want to buy a parcel in western West Virginia, we probably could. But if we want anything within 3 hours of DC or Baltimore, we're going to have to shell out more. And on top of that, we'll have to pay to clear and grade land. That alone can cost $4,000 to $10,000 per acre. We'll have to pay taxes, water bills, power bills and so much more. There's drainage, paving and of course, legal fees.

These are all factors we will have to contend with, and it's hard to say what they're going to cost exactly. We have to be braced to deal with them, in addition to a mortgage.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 11:17 am 
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I cannot vote on this without seeing numbers and projections

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 11:17 am 
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I have always considered the reasonable ticket prices, paired with the provision of hardship tickets, as a really wonderful reflection of the community’s commitment to radical inclusion. Similarly, I am not sure it is particularly helpful to compare prices with wickerman, which is not an official regional burn, and freeform which uses a portion of ticket money to pay the organizers. For me I think the discussion comes down to the fairness of forcing anyone who wants to practice immediacy and participate in the burn now, to increase how much they contribute to the very abstract future of pdf which they may or may not chose or be able to participate in. It might also be worthwhile to consider other options than a blanket increase in ticket prices. A small parking pass fee would raise money, but also give people who are low on funds the option of splitting the cost with others by carpooling.


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 26, 2015 2:05 pm 
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I'm going to side with Karnak and Eucaris on this one. We already raised the ticket price by $15 to raise money for land purchase once, we have enough sitting in the bank to handle the up-front part of financing any purchase that PDF can realistically make payments on (plus more with every passing burn), and I think trying to raise more money without knowing how much we need to raise is a mistake.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2015 8:39 pm 
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This came up briefly on tonight's BoD call. The BoD didn't discuss the merits of the proposal itself, but is of the opinion that the PC is welcome to discuss and vote on a ticket price increase, but that we are already too close to Fall PDF for any increase to be implemented this year.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 29, 2015 8:24 am 
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My thoughts:
After much thought, I am against a land purchase.
- Volunteerism is scarce. The BOD is understaffed. The people that do step up are amazing, but owning land takes it to a whole new level and is asking a lot.
- Having a deadline makes no sense. Are you going to spend money to buy land that is not what you want because you have a deadline?
- The land purchased has to be very large in size in order to have a buffer. A smallish parcel next to farmland may become a smallish parcel next to a neighborhood.
- A large piece of land needs caretakers, and most likely a lot of work. Probably more than one person as a full-time job, cutting grass and improving the land. That opens up a whole new set of issues.
- Burning Man rents land. They pay millions in attorney fees and the attorneys clearly have not said the best move is to buy land.
- MOST IMPORTANT - the Apogaea effect. Imagine buying land and then having the town/county change zoning laws to prevent large gatherings.

NOTE: the 4Q farm is probably the best example of how to own land and make it financially viable, but that means becoming a church, having paying members, and getting very much away from a true burn culture.

Vote on a new use of the land-purchase funds. Maybe buy the land of the neighbors of the VVMC, for expansion. Deed it to the vets in exchange for a 99 year lease. Increase art grant funding, and include transportation reimbursement for art that requires renting vehicles to bring art. Lower ticket prices to $40.


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PostPosted: Mon Jun 29, 2015 9:12 pm 
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I envy the optimism that sees anything in that area 99 years from now as consistently above water for anyone to try to camp on it. Just saying.

Also, in the time we've been there, the vets have had the opportunity to buy most of the adjoining properties, and haven't. It's certainly worth considering the possibility they aren't looking for more property (especially given that they are all of at least a certain age).

And if a large piece of unimproved land (that isn't a golf course or corporate office park lawn or ...) needs more than just a full-time caretaker for basic upkeep, you may want to take a careful look at what your caretakers are spending so much time on.


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