A miniature Burning Man will soon happen on the outskirts of Kern County.

A small San Diego collective plans to hold YOUtopia near California City, from Oct. 23-27, according to the festival's website.

Designed for those who just can’t get enough of a once-a-year Burning Man, YOUtopia has been held throughout the country for years, but will be making its first stop in Kern County in less than two weeks.

The event will be held on the grounds of Wasteland Weekend, the annual Mad Max-inspired festival that took place over four days at the end of September.

But whereas Wasteland Weekend features costumes that need to be capable of taking a beating in the thunderdome, YOUtopia is the kind of place that features a “Hug Deli.”

For the uninitiated, Burning Man is a massive gathering that attracts a large collection of Silicon Valley elite, social media influencers, and people just wanting to have a good time in the Nevada desert at the tail-end of summer.

The event stresses 10 principles, like radical inclusion, radical self-expression and “decommodification.”

While for some, the all-night partying and unforgiving desert sun might be too intense to appreciate more than once a year, YOUtopia caters to those who either can’t make it to Burning Man, or who can’t get enough of it.

“YOUtopia is part of a long tradition of bringing the magic of the playa to the rest of the world while also celebrating the vibrant creative and communal elements of San Diego and the surrounding areas,” the website reads.

The event resembles a smaller-scale Lightning in a Bottle, with participants driving in mostly from outside of the county and sleeping in RVs or tents at the event site.

The nonprofit San Diego Collaborative Arts Project is putting on the show, which sold around 3,500 tickets last year.

Music, art and creativity will be highly prized throughout the extended weekend, with small camps set up throughout the grounds catering to different themes.

Due to its proximity to Halloween, the event is known as BOOtopia: A Spectacular Spooky Spectactle, and costumes are encouraged.

Tickets are still available, and cost between $165 and $420, according to the event website.

While YOUtopia may bring thousands of newcomers to Kern County for the first time, with its policy of "leave no trace," after the weekend is over, it may be impossible to tell that they were ever there at all.

You can reach Sam Morgen at 661-395-7415. You may also follow him on Twitter @smorgenTBC.

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(3) comments

She Dee

YOUtopia? With a name like this, I certainly hope they give their fair share of profits to assist the homeless...I never have supported out of towners profiting from gigs like this. It actually hurts the locals because it does nothing for any of them...gas, food & lodging are the only businesses who might profit from a venue such as this. How much does it cost to do the clean-up afterwards?


Have played Fr. Horn in many bands and orchestras (40yrs). . . CLASSICAL MUSIC for my ears and heart . . . and listened often at Ravinia Festival in Highland Park Il (Chicago).

Can't remember seeing anything in Bako.com about our Bako Symphony . . . and never had the time to audition (woulda liked . . . still @ 80). >> http://www.bsonow.org/about-us/bso-history/

Nowadays . . . we only seem to have "Burning Man"("Lightning in a Bottle"?) as a lost substitute for "Woodstock" . . .

(Now all tied up with "hemp"?)

She Dee

Remuda- I somehow doubt that "hemp" has too much to do with an outdoor RAVE/aka Art Installation from a non profit group. I think it's more of a cover tune from a white label recording company. The participants will pay to be the lab rats for those new mental hospitals that America will soon be building to replace the popular Prison System that is not making a profit these days! If red tape is made of hemp, I wonder what those unmarked pills have in them? Here we go again...the 60's returning to America!!!

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