January 2014 Board Meeting Summary

January Board Meeting picture with Art

Sunday, January 19, 2014
Fusion Factory, Denver

Alright people, we’re heading into the thick of planning and we’re forging on! It was impressive to see the big turnout with 31 attendees, including all the board members. Even the landowner of the property being considered for future Apogaeas showed up to talk about his land -way cool! As you’ll see below, there were some important topics, and it’s only going to get more interesting these next few months.  So read on, hopefully learn and enjoy!


Eric M. addressed the safety and insurance concerns that have surfaced as of late. Burning Man is pushing for all BM Regionals to be thoroughly covered due to recent safety issues. The BOD feels obligated to cover litigation risks and protect the Org so we can keep this fabulous event going. In response, there are changes being made to creative grant, placement and other processes, and there is also a possibility that a “dangerous art lead/department” will be created, all with the intention of mitigating liability risks.

Eric clarified that insurance protects the organization; what individuals bring is the responsibility of the individual. Artists can choose to insure their own work. In the future, Regionals might want to band together to share insurance costs. Still, identifying safety risks is the responsibility of each of us. If you see something hazardous at the event, please report it on the spot. What we all can do is encourage the community to think about “how can I keep my friends safe?”

The BOD assured everyone they will pick the best possible insurance option. Once the insurance is finalized for 2014, the BOD did promise that it would be posted with the exclusions on the website. It is not possible to outline specifically what is not allowed, so individuals who are bringing things need to determine whether it’s safe and use their best judgment.

Please feel free to contact [email protected] to discuss this further.

Charitable Works
The Charitable Works Lead, Matt Stringer, was excited to share a few of his goals. He is working on expanding our presence as a charitable organization, and would like to do more actual on-the-ground volunteering with other non-profits. He wishes to leverage our financial resources to do more than we have. He’s been getting feedback from the community about which organizations Apo could support. Matt asked the BOD to earmark more money than ever for charitable donations, i.e. $10,000.

Michael Yancy suggested Apo donates to Park Country Fire department as they are understaffed.

So Rachel Cain is working on how to bring Apo art into the default world, though nothing is official yet, and suggested the possibility of working in coordination with Matt in his vision.


President, Scott “Koda” – 135 days until we open the door to the public!

Submit Department #’s by Feb. 16th!
Department Leads need to submit the final number of ppl in their department to Sean “Sherpa” by the next board meeting, or Sunday, February 16th, so that he can set aside their reserved tickets.

Vice President, Sean “Sherpa” –

BM Global Leadership Conference
Sean was happy to announce that he submitted 19 applications (historically the most ever) from our four (4) regions.

In order to be reimbursed for this year’s conference, attendees must meet the following criteria:

  1. Be in Ignition or a Red Shirt
  2. Make a video-recorded presentation at the April or May Ignition Mixer or at the Acculturation Department at Apogaea at the latest. You may record video on your own (with a reasonable excuse). Videos cannot be made after Apogaea 2014. After the video is submitted, you can apply for the reimbursement.

Individual Reimbursement = $300 max
Total reimbursements = $1,500 cap distributed among all who apply

Burning Man Staff Tickets
The BOD approved to reserve 4 tickets for Burning Man Staff at the Ignition price of $50.00. Like last year, it would be an honor to have them see what we’re doing here in Colorado!

Secretary, Caroline “Caroshine” – The December Board Meeting Minutes were approved.

Online BOD votes:
Approval of the first round grants (Ludicrous Monday Round)
Approved the contract language for the Effigy

Treasurer, Steve Merager, reviewed the bank accounts balances and shared what he and the Finance team are working on right now:

  • They are close to dispersing money for the first awarded creative grants
  • Working on the 2013 taxes – they will retain a CPA.
  • January 26th department budgets were due.
  • In process of finalizing 2013: he mailed 1099’s to artists

As promised, Steve did more homework on investments and the difference between holding our cash reserve in CD or Money Market. The CD we are currently using is yielding .15%. The money market with a checking account offers 0.35% and is not affected by market conditions. The CD matures on April 3rd, and Steve instructed Westerra to transfer the cash to the savings account to get through the event. After the event, it may be good to move the cash reserve into the money market.


Check out the previous month’s ratifications:
December | November | October | September

Effigy Lead – Kenyon Sky
DPW MOD – Eric Opela
DPW MOD – John Atwater
DPW MOD – Sascha Protzko
Parking XXXO – Martin Beran
Parking XXXO – John Collins
Ticketing and Wristband Lead – Brie Cook
Volunteer Database Software Dev – Scott Dudley

Created Position
DPW Communication Coordinator – Michele Meydenbauer ratified


Jen “Jigsaw” presented a fabulous visual layout of the departments and ‘staffing’ structure of the Apo org that she’s been industriously creating. It’s not quite ready, but will be published soon on the Apo Wiki and the new website! Yes, you heard that right…read on below for more info…


Annie Ransome presented the new website that the Telemetry/Communications team has been redesigning. The main goal of the project was to increase usability and intuitive flow through the pages so that visitors could more easily find information. The mobile site will also be much easier to read. It will likely go live in February before ticket sales in March, and will be a work in progress. There is a feedback form on the site that Telemetry will have available for any comments or suggestions.


…and more exciting news! Brie, the new ticket lead (YAY!), shared the ticket round dates and discussed the choice to push back sale dates to avoid conflicting with the BM ticket sale in February.

Round 1: Friday March 7, 7:00 pm (60% of the tickets)
Round 2: Saturday March 15 at 12 noon. (40% tickets)
OMG, Last Chance Sale: May 10th at 6:00 pm (remaining tickets including any reserved tickets that didn’t get purchased)

Other important details regarding tickets:

  • Scholarship/Youth tickets deadline has been pushed back to Feb. 12th @ 11:59pm
  • Scholarship / Youth ticket recipients notified by Feb 28, 2014
  • Reserved ticket codes may be redeemed for a ticket from March 7 – April 30 (reserved ticket codes include, Ignition, Red Shirts, Scholarship / Youth, granted artist, or any other person with a reserved ticket code)
  • There will be no ticket refunds

The option of going back to mailed paper tickets in order to speed up the gate process and prevent will call issues was discussed and heavily questioned. Besides the paper waste, issues of scalping were among the conferred disadvantages. Brie added that there might be the possibility of bar-code scanners at the gate, where mobile devices could be used to present the tickets. Brie is also tossing around the idea of using a ticket exchange. Piper has written ticket exchange software, but it wasn’t clear if it would be Apo ready for 2014. Brie will also be talking to the Gate Lead to discuss possible ideas for decreasing check-in time, especially since we’ll have 2100 tickets in circulation this year!!! These details have not been solidified yet, but rest assured the Telemetry team will keep you in the loop.


John Collins presented the BOD a possible piece of land that could be a great possibility for the future of our event. It’s easier to get in and out of and only about 30 minutes further than our current location. Total travel time from Denver would be about 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Several other reasons arose as to why it would be a good space. It is a 160 acre basin at an elevation of 9,500 feet, and offers a wide open area (no trees) that would be conducive for continued growth, more art cars and better parking options. Fire would not be as much of a concern because the grass isn’t flammable, and we could have oppositional traffic all the way in and out. The National Forest skirts one side of the land, and mountains jut up from the space only 250 yards from the boundary line. The owner of the property spoke, shared information about the land, invited Apo leaders to tour the land, and was enthused about working with our community.

If you have any questions or other ideas, you are welcome to email [email protected]!


Michael Yancy, Board Member
Placement and Sound have almost all positions filled. They will have a much more fleshed out plan for the department this year, which includes utilizing a placement planner for each neighborhood. Since Kemo has another position to cover it, Michael asked the BOD to eliminate the Porta-Potty lead position.

Kenyon Sky, Effigy Lead
The Effigy crew was on the hunt for warehouse space (but recently found a spot!).  He is also working on addressing the build concerns expressed by the art committee.

If you are interested in helping to build the Effigy — such a vital part of the event — or to fund the warehouse and tools, please check out the following links:

Sean Sidelko, Board Member
Conclave is starting to meet again (every other Monday). Fire perimeter may need to be larger because of the size of the Effigy this year. If they do this, the fire performance time can be shorter. Still, conclave is making sure to keep the performance shorter either way. Everyone happily cheered at the idea!

Damian Budd, DPW and IT
IT has implemented a ticketing system to better manage IT requests and prevent oversights.

Meg Woodhouse, Acculturation
The Acculturation crew is kicking around who they are going to invite from Burning Man to attend our event, and now have four (4) tickets reserved for those invitees.

Upcoming Board Meeting

Sunday, Feb 16th
Magic Mansion

As always, this meeting is public and all are welcome!