First Planning Meeting Minutes

30 01 2011

Camp Stella is getting an early start this year with an unprecedented January planning meeting.  On Wednesday, 1/26/11 six of us met at the home of Sanddog.

  • Jefferson
  • Emo
  • Jamie (Sprout)
  • John (Mojo)
  • Todd (Sanddog)
  • Will

The main topic of this meeting was MONEY.


  • Current balance:  $0.00.
  • Treasurer:  Position open
  • Sprout (and soon Todd) has been gifting storage space to Camp Stella for months.


We are hoping to raise money quickly so that the Camp can take over financial responsibility of the storage facility.

In fact, we have set a goal to raise enough money to pay for the storage facility from now through Burning Man and through, at least, the spring of next year.  Our “reach goal” is to raise enough to pay for storage through the following Burning Man.

We are also planning to have around $1,500 in transportation expenses.  So considering expected miscellaneous expenses, our first pass at a budget is $5,000.00 + storage for September through next spring.


We determined the following dues structure:

  • $75 from now until the Ides of March
  • $100 on March 15th
  • $125 on April 15th
  • $150 on May 15th
  • $175 on June 15th
  • $200 on July 15th


One of the most feasible and exciting ideas that came out of the meeting was the concept of developing…

The Ultimate Burning Man Bike online raffle.

Here’s how it would work:  We would obtain a bike to be elaborately decorated.  It would essentially be a Burning Man dream bike appointed with lights, bells, maybe a basket, and decorated lavishly.  The winner will claim the bike on the playa at Camp Stella.

Raffel tickets would be sold to Burners around the world online 24/hours a day.  We are thinking that this may be an attractive raffle for Burners traveling from afar.

We also talked about developing other items to sell online.  Some of the items we discussed included a Survival Kit, stickers, and magnets, among others.

Also being planned is a rummage sale (perhaps at the Castro Country Club) and a fundraising event such as a Mystery Science Theater 3000 style movie night with celebrity drag queens adding commentary throughout the movie.


The next meeting will be Thursday, February 17th.  We’ll continue the discussion about fundraising and begin a dialog about outreach.


July Planning Meeting Minutes

30 07 2009

The meeting was attended by:  Jefferson, Steve Paylor (who was visiting from Philadelphia), Max, Turtle, Kaboodle, Mojo, Sarah, Cuapi, Sprout, and Emo.


We started the meeting by setting the date for the next (and last) planning meeting.

Thursday, August 13th, 7:00 – 9:00 PM

216 Church St
(between 15th St & Market St)
San Francisco, CA 94114


The last official Camp Stella event will be Saturday, August 15th from 1:00-5:00.  Location TBD.


Kaboodle reported that we had 18 dues paid members and an additional 5 expressions of interest.  We made a decision to refund Eddies dues.  Dues are non-refundable, however, it’s Camp Stella policy that we may address refund requests on a case-by-case basis.  Because Eddie has attended several Camp Stella events and worked his ass off, we agreed unanimously that his dues should be refunded.  He has been a great help to the Camp.

Kaboodle agreed to remind the group that dues would increase to $125 on August 1st  (and he did).


Sprout, who organized the fundraiser, reported that we brought in a total of $252 (before donating $25 to the Castro Country Club for the use of their space).  They also provided tables.

This is pretty good considering that there wasn’t really a lot of stuff to sell.  Next rummage sale should start at 9:00 AM rather than 8:00 AM.

Thanks to Sprout (organizer), Jason (made signs),  Steve Paylor, Kaboodle, and Max (also to Turtle and Jefferson for donating stuff even though they weren’t able to staff the sale).


According to our treasurer, thanks to the generous donation of $1.01 from Jefferson, our bank account is now $3,200 exactly.


Emory volunteered to research solar lights for inside our tents.  Max recommended white LEDs.  The group hastily suggested a budget of $200-$300.


Mojo volunteered to pick up our collection of solar powered garden stake lights, buy recharable batteries, get reimbursed from Kaboodle, install the new batteries (using a tiny screwdriver), properly dispose of the spent batteries), and leave the lights out in the sun to get them reved up.

On behalf of all of Stella, thank you Mojo!


We discussed purchasing Daddy Don’s yurt.  In the end we determined that it was not large enough for our largest meetings, the Whoopee Party, family dinner, and any other larger gatherings.

Emory brought information about some Burner-friendly Geodesic domes, but after much discussion, we decided that we couldn’t afford them.  Our goal is to end the year with a surplus that will position us for the purchase next year.

In the end, we decided to buy 2 car ports.


After Jefferson reviewed the options, it was decided that we would make a reservation for a truck in El Cerrito at an independantly owned truck rental company.  They had the best pricing and will knowingly rent to Burners.

Jason has agreed to drive the truck and all of our gear out there.


After an exhaustive discussion and a spirited debate, the group present voted to host Any A meetings (inclusive of anyone in any 12 step program).  The driver was that the majority present didn’t want meeting attendees to feel that they had to confine thier discussion “as it relates to alcoholism.”

Always a good sport, Jefferson championed the group concience and asked the group if they wouldn’t mind if he started an additional meeting, an Open AA meeting.  The group was enthusiastic.  There was some discussion about having it at a different time, but in the end, it was decided that they should both be held simutaneously.


Steve Paylor agreed to be our Sexual Assault Liason and has forwarded information to our members from B.E.D. a sexual assualt prevention theme camp.


  • Treasurer – Kaboodle
  • Camp Registration – Sprout
  • Signage – Daddy Don, Max
  • Meeting Beverages / Snacks Co-Hosts – Mojo and Chaz
  • New Member Liasons:  Turtle and Cuapi
  • Whoopee Party Co-Hosts:  Kevin and Peter
  • Communal Meal Coordinator:  Sarah
  • Meeting Coordinators:  Any A =Cuapi,  AA = Jefferson
  • Beautification Specialist:  Sprout  
  • Post Burning Man Storage Coordinator:  Peter Griggs

June Planning Meeting Minutes

25 06 2009

Thursday, June 25th, 7:00PM

Mojo, Eddie, Kaboodle, Chaz, Jason, Sprout, Jefferson

Mojo, Eddie, Kaboodle, Chaz, Jason, Sprout, Jefferson


We now have 17 dues paid members and a balance of $2,845.99

Our projection is that we will aquire and additional $800 in dues and $700 at fund raisers.  This would bring our total to $4,345.99.

Expected expenses include:

  • New tent (see below)
  • Rental vehicle to get our gear out there
  • Storage fees which will begin in August
  • Cooking fuel
  • Whoopee Party decorations, beverages and snacks.
  • A new tarp for the privacy shower
  • Lighting for inside the tent.
  • Replacement rechargeable batteries for the solar lights.


NewTentThank you Steve for spending hours surfing, making phone calls, and sending emails to present tent options to the group.  After much thoughtful deliberation, we went with Steve’s #1 recommendation, a canvas Army tent for $1,503.70.

Each of the tents that we reviewed had pros and cons.  The benefits of the tent that we selected include:

  • Among the tents we were considering, it was just about the best value.
  • The canvas material will be more durable than vinyl options.
  • Seems to be a structurally sound design (17 side poles).
  • The sides roll up for ventilation, views.

The down sides are:

  • It’s ugly (Eddie will be brainstorming on decoration possibilities).
  • It’s really heavy at 605# (though not the heaviest 736#).
  • The longest pole is 10’3″ which requires transport/storage considerations.

The next step is for Steve and Kaboodle to place the order so that we can get the tent here in time for the July 18th Work Day when we will erect it.


We are exploring two options:

A. Renting a truck.

B. Renting a cargo van and purchasing a trailer that would be attached to the Kaboodle/Chaz RV.  We would then sell the trailer after the event or put it in storage.

Jefferson and Kaboodle will be pricing out these options and will report to the group via Yahoo Groups so that we can make a reservation soon.


We recently received an inquiry regarding “part-time” camping in Stella (for lack of a better word).  To elaborate, are we open to a sort of dual citizenship where a Burner shares Family Dinner, takes an occasional shower, and enjoys some of the benefits of Stella without actually ever sleeping in the Camp.

We recalled previous dues paying members who camped part-time with Stella and discussed our observations and experience.  In the end, it was decided that we would like to address each request on a case-by-case basis, but our thoughts were that we would like all members of Camp Stella (full or part-time) to join us for Family Dinner or Tuesday night, pay full dues, and we would encourage them to contribute to the camp in some way.


Trixie at the first Plain Ordinary Whoopee Party.

Trixie at the first Plain Ordinary Whoopee Party.

I brought up the fact that in previous years, those that attended the Billion Bunny March weren’t able to make it back to camp in time to help prepare for the Whoopee Party.  This hasn’t been an issue in previous year (those that couldn’t set up stayed later to break down), however, it seems that more of us than ever will be Marching for bunny rights.  I was concerned that the majority of the work would be left on the shoulders of a skeleton crew when Party preporation had been more of an all-hands effort in years past.

The group concience of those present was that there will be enough Stellites not going to the March to stay behind and prepare for the Whoopee Party.

Whoopee Party volunteers Kevin and Peter will likely be calling for volunteers.

As a reminder, participation in the Whoopee Party (set up/attendance/clean up) is appreciated, but not a requirement of camping with Stella.


I had suggested on Yahoo Groups that we discuss this at the July meeting, however, those present tonight were enthusiastic about resolving this issuse.  Loving discussion ensued and all opinions were respectfully heard.

While we came to a group conscience tonight, we also want to ensure that the minority opinion of any dues-paid members of Stella who was not able to attend tonight (whether due to scheduling conflicts or geographical limitations) has the opportunity to voice their opinion.

Group conscience:  Camp Stella meetings shall be Open AA Meetings.

This is an open meeting of Alcoholics Anonymous. We are glad you are here, especially newcomers. In keeping with our singleness of purpose and our Third Tradition which states “The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking,” we ask that all who participate confine their discussion to their problems as they relate to alcoholism.

We have agreed that it shall be up to each secretary to determine how lenient they want to be in permitting discussion which is not appropriate for an open meeting.

Again, we would like to invite those unable to attend tonight to offer a minority opionion and are prepared to reopen the discussion if necessary.


  • Mojo and Chaz have agreed to assist Eddie with Meeting beverages/snacks.
  • Sprout volunteered for the thankless job of Beautification.

Thanks everybody!


Planning Meeting 5/14

15 05 2009
Location: Crepevine

Attended by: Jefferson, Cuapi, Eddie, Kaboodle (pictured below), Max, Turtle, and Sprout (not pictured).

 Jefferson, Cuapi, Eddie, Kaboodle

Jefferson, Cuapi, Eddie, Kaboodle


The owners of my building will not allow anything that looks flamable to be stored in the crawlspace.  Specifically for us this means pillows, flags, and tarps.  Sprout has agreed to store the pillows at his place. 

Max and Turtle will make a trek to Diesel Daddy Dave’s on Saturday to pick up the remainder of the Camp Stella gear.

We will solicit a volunteer to get pricing for storage here in the city as a long term storage solution post-Burning Man.  We may also consider alternative storage options such as Reno.


This is one view.  Click on the photo for additional pics.

This is one view. Click on the photo for additional pics.

We have scheudled a Work Day for June 13th and will push our June Planning Meeting to June 20th. We will pull everything we own from the crawlspace, determine what needs to be trashed, what can be sold in our rummage sale, and clean and repair anything that we need to keep for next year.  We are all very excited that Daddy Don will be joining us from LA for this Work Day.


Kaboodle reports that we have nearly $2,300 in the bank now.  By the end of the meeting we had 14 dues paying members.  Last year the camp spent only around $800 however the year before we spent in excess of $2,500. 

We are projecting that we’ll need $1,000-$2,500 for gas/transportaion.  We would like to purchase a new tent which will likely run between $1,000-$1,500.  And we will have storage fees in addition to incidental expenses.


Rummage Sale – Sprout will be heading up our rummage sale.  We set a date of Sunday, July 19th as our target.  However, after the meeting had ended, Kaboodle noted that was the same day as Dore Alley.  We can discuss this further at our June meeting.

Burning Man For Dummies – We decided to host another Burning Man for Dummies on July 25 to build on the sucess of the first one.  We will make some modifications to the format which we will determine at the planning meeting on June 13th.

We are also expecting that a few more members will join our tribe which will provide additional revenue.


There was some discussion about whether we can avoid having to rent a cargo van by stuffing all of our gear into the two RVs that we know are going.  Cuapi/Chaz and Jefferson/Emo.  We will discuss this further after the next Work Day so that we have a better sense of how much gear we will have to bring out.


We decided to invest in a high quality large tent (approx. 30′ X 20′) and have proposed $1,000-$1,500 (not more than $2K).  By group concience, we volunteered Steve from Philly to research this project and make a reccomendation to the group.  He has accepted our challenge.  We would like to make a decision on the new tent at the June meeting so that we can set it up at the July meeting when Steve is in town.


  • Treasurer – Kaboodle
  • Camp Registration – Sprout
  • Signage – Daddy Don
  • Meeting Beverages / Snacks Co-Hosts – Eddie and __(Open)__
  • New Member Liasons:  Turtle and Cuapi
  • Whoopee Party Co-Hosts:  Kevin and Peter
  • Communal Meal Coordinator:  __(Open)__
  • Meeting Coordinator:  Cuapi
  • Beautification Specialist:  __(Open)__
  • Post Burning Man Storage Coordinator:  Peter Griggs

Humbly submitted,


Work Day 1 Report

2 05 2009
Diesel Daddy Dave, Cuapi, Sprout

Diesel Daddy Dave, Cuapi, Sprout

Sprout, Jefferson and Cuapi met Diesel Daddy Dave in Pleasanton Saturday afternoon, May 2nd, to begin sorting through Camp Stella equipment.

Sprout's pretty good with rope.

We lost a few rugs and pillows to the elements, however, the majority of our g

ear was salvageable. We said good bye to our two white tents that have served us many years. We are left with the “new tent” which made it’s debut last year and the old “Family” tent which Jayne loaned to Stella a few years ago.

Most of our gear fit into Sprout’s Jeep, Cuapi’s cruiser, and Jefferson’s rented Scion. The three drove back to deposit the gear in the underbelly of Jefferson’s apartment. We were not able to retrieve all gear. About two more car loads should get it.

Deisel Daddy Dave is going to take our trash to the dump and submit a receipt for the expense to dispose of the garbage.

We will need to schedule a work day to clean, inventory, and set up our remaining gear to determine what stays, what goes, and what needs repair. Stay tuned for more details.

Sending an extra big THANK YOU to DDD for letting us store our gear at his place all this time!

The Evolution of Avalon

1 05 2009
Avalon Village 2006

Avalon Village 2006

It was decided at the last Avalon Planning meeting that Avalon will not register as a village this year. Camp Stella cast the lone vote to keep Avalon together as a village. The group conscience however was to register theme camps individually and request that we be placed side by side.

The thinking was that we would get better placement, with each camp getting spoke street (7:30) real estate.

This is how Avalon Village began many years ago, so in a way, we are returning to our roots. Avalon Planners feel confident that the Borg (Burning Man Organization) will honor our request, however, there is risk that we are not placed side by side.

Another benefit of being placed individually by the borg is that each camp will have a set plot of land to work with. This will eliminate the uncomfortable and awkward tug-of-wars that the Avalon planners are faced with when we have to divide up the village territory (who get’s street frontage, who gets to camp next to their “store front,” how much space does each camp get?, etc.)

Our hope is that we will still all be neighbors with 7:30 street frontage.

The village has evolved.

April Planning Meeting

11 04 2009

We met on the 5th Floor of Sports Basement on Saturday 4/11 from 1:00 – 2:30.

In attendance:  Jefferson, Sprout, Max, Kaboodle, and Eddie


We went over the calendar for the rest of the season and have decided to change any pre-AIDS/LifeCycle meetintgs to Thursday night’s at 7:00 PM.  Location TBD.  I have already changed the dates on the Camp Stella Google Calendar.

We decided to continue to meet at Sports Basement if they’ll let us.

Our goal for the May Planning Meeting is to select a new tent.  Max will bring options for us to discuss.


We talked about Work Day which is May 2nd.  We will depart San Francisco at 11:00.  We have at least 3 vehicles going so far so we should be able to carpool with folks that don’t have cars.  We will arrive in Pleasanton at around noon and will all eat lunch together down town before we roll up our sleeves and get to work.

Max is concerned that there may be a huge amount of junk that needs to be dumped.  We may need to make a trip to the dump.  I agreed to check in with DDD to get his take on that.  We’ll be transferring the majority of stuff to my basement.


We are in good shape for this event.  Peter and possibly Oring will be staffing the registration table.  Eddie will be pitching in where needed.

All presenters are confirmed.  Max and Kaboodle are going to meet at Sports Basement at 1:00 to pick out “props” for their presentation.


The group has decided to remain in Avalon Village again this year.   We acknowledge that the village may feel quite different this year but we appreciate having good neighbors and like being located in a mostly but not exclusively queer village.


Camp Dues go up from $75 to $100 on May 1st.  However, you may pay your camp dues in person on Work Day (May 3rd) at the $75 rate.  So far Daddy Don and Jefferson have paid dues.