Preps for Burning of Zozobra underway in Santa Fe

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SANTA FE, N.M. — The 99th Burning of Zozobra is this Friday. If you’re planning on seeing Old Man Gloom burn, there are a few things to keep in mind.

“This is the original Burning Man,” said Ray Sandoval, chairman of the event. “99 years we’ve been doing this. You know, it’s a great opportunity for us to come together as a community and celebrate one another.”

The tradition attracts thousands to Fort Marcy Park in Santa Fe. This year, organizers expect a crowd of more than 50,000 people.

“You know, unfortunately, we all know the kind of world that we live in,” Sandoval said. “Our first priority is to keep everybody safe. So we have multiple layers of security and we have various law enforcement to respond if we have an incident.”

So organizers say less is more if you’re headed to the event.

“The less you bring, the faster you are going to get through the different rings of our security,” Sandoval said. “We are not allowing any water bottles, any kind of liquids. We have five drinking stations with purified water, and you also get a nice collectible cup so water will be free in the venue.”

Sandoval also mentioned that food needs to be in clear bags.

“People love to bring food, but we do require them to do what we call a food exchange which is to take all food out of the packaging and put it into clear bags,” Sandoval said.

The venue is not allowing any bags or purses in unless they are clear.

“We get so many people in our gates, we want to be able to responsibly process people through and so it’s clear bags only,” Sandoval said. “Now, if you bring something on site that we are not going to allow in, we do have locker trucks on site but it’s going to cost you 10 bucks to rent that. So again, the less you bring the easier it’s going to be.”

To buy tickets and see what can and can’t be brought to the venue, click here.