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Berkeley Spark plans to bring the Playa to downtown

An art car at Burning Man in the Nevada desert. What will emerge in Civic Center Park? Photo:
An art car at Burning Man in the Nevada desert. What will emerge in Civic Center Park? Photo: eponamusic

A free, one-day festival on Saturday, Aug. 10, hopes to bring some of the spirit of the Burning Man Playa to downtown Berkeley. Berkeley Spark plans to bring art, music, performance, dance and workshops led by so-called Burners — Burning Man participants — and East Bay artists to Civic Center Park.

“We want to tap into all the creative energy of Burners in Berkeley and the East Bay,” said John Caner, executive director of the Downtown Berkeley Association, which is sponsoring the event in partnership with Berkeley’s Office of Economic Development, Berkeley Partners for Parks, Livable Berkeley, Ecology Center, Streets Alive and Berkeleyside. “We want to get some of that Burner energy downtown.” 

Berkeley Spark will run from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Aug. 10, with a number of after parties planned throughout downtown Berkeley to continue the celebration.

The organizers describe Berkeley Spark as “a place for radical self-expression, inclusivity, transformation and mutual respect.” Sculptures (both fixed and kinetic), art cars, dancers, DJs, burlesque performers, musicians, clothing and jewelry designers are all being sought for the festival. Applications can be made through the Spark website. Art submissions will be reviewed by a Spark committee, with decisions by July 15.


You can like Berkeley Spark on Facebook or follow it on Twitter @berkeleyspark.

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