All Hands on Deck! The Monaco is preparing for her 2014 return voyage to the Playa. The Monaco is a Burning Man land frigate. She was built to sail the Black Rock Desert (yes, truly sail...turn off the engine and go!) She is approximately 45 feet long and holds more than 40 passengers. She's got 3 masts, a generator for music and lighting, a bar and plenty of room on the deck for both crew and passengers. Voyaging to Black Rock is hard on our lovely sailing ship, though, and she's in need of some repairs and improvements in port before she makes another journey.
The Monaco is many things. Mobile art. Remembrance of times past. A hands-on experience. The reminder that travel and adventure is out there, ready to whisk you away to some new and magnificent landscape. She’s beautiful, majestic, and yes, she really sails. Making your Black Rock experience just that much more surreal and magical. This year we hope to continue the adventure, joining the caravansary called Black Rock City for our 5th year.
There are annual upkeep costs, repairs and maintenance as well as some new and exciting improvements in store for the Monaco this year.
Our necessary upkeep, improvement and repairs come to $5000 and include the following:
- New transmission cooler
- Engine bay heat shielding
- Sail and rigging repair
- Repaint hull
- Spare parts
- Fuel and insurance costs
We are hoping to upgrade the following, which would require an additional $2500:
- New Mast and Sail Lighting
New LED Lighting and color control
- New Deck, Hull and Undercarriage lighting
- Improve cabin
In short, our minimum financial need to return to the Playa is $5000, however, we are hoping to reach a total of $7500 for our much need lighting improvements!
In ocean surf, blown in from farthest seas Under the August ardors, the grand rush Of crested life assailed me with its waves, And cooled me while it fired. With sturdy joy I sought its broadest billows, and resigned My spirit to their surge and sway; or stood In sheltered coves, Reached only by the spume And crepitant bubbles of the yesty floods, Drinking the roar, the sheen, the restlessness, As inspiration, both of sense and soul.
I saw the waves of life roll up the steps Of great cathedrals and retire; and break In charioted grandeur at the foot Of marble palaces, and toss their spray Of feathered beauty through the open doors, To pile the restless foam within; and burst On crowded caravansaries, to fall In quick return; and in dark currents glide Through sinuous alleys and the grimy loops Of reeking cellars; and with softest plash Assail the gilded shrines of opulence, And slide in musical relapse away.
With senses dazed and stunned, and soul o'erfilled With chaos of new thoughts, I turned away, And sought my city home.
-Josiah Gilbert Holland
Cap'n Greg Barron began dreaming of building a frigate for Burning Man after he had built the Canyou, a BRC outrigger sailing canoe. In 2010, he decided to bring that dream to fruition. After studying various plans from 18th century Royal Navy and American naval frigates from 1790-1799, he ultimately decided to use plans for The Raleigh, a Continental Navy ship laid down in 1776, to design his frigate. He rescaled his design to about 50% of the Raleigh's size and adjusted the beam to fit the chassis of an RV. Cap'n Greg and his trusty crew then stripped the RV to the bone and carefully rebuilt it to be the beautiful landship we know as the PV Monaco.
All pledges will be available for pickup in Black Rock City. We'll update you with our docking location as soon as we get it from BRC Placement.
Become a Deckhand
Want to lend a helping hand with the ship's repairs? The Monaco is drydocked in Alameda. If you live in the SF Bay Area, contact us and we'll add you to our Crew workday email list.
Want to hear more about the ship? Join our Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/TheMonacoBRC
Risks and challenges
The Captain and Crew of the Monaco are a hardy, dedicated and impassioned group. Every year there are folks dedicating their summer weekends, evenings and even full weeks in August preparing the Monaco for her sojourn to the Playa. And on the Playa, the Crew works hard to bring you the magical experience of sailing a ship from times gone by on a lake that has long been without water. Our one obstacle is funding...which is where you, our awesome patrons, come in! We hope you join us in making this journey happen once again.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Good question. ALL of our backers are invited to cruise with us during the week.
We typically let out the sails for a mid-afternoon cruise and then head out again around 9ish pm. Sometimes there will be morning cruising as well. You are welcome to meet up with us at Monaco's docking space (our camp) or find us out on the Playa. We'll post the camp address as soon as we have it. We don't give out access to the ship as a pledge reward because it's a Playa gift for all burners, not just for backers and crew.
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