Update, 9/1/15: Organizers of annual bacchanal Burning Beast have officially canceled the popular event this year. An email to ticket holders announced the change, explaining: "While so many communities are still threatened by fires, and with the burn ban still in effect, continuing our yearly celebration of fire and feasting does not align with the values espoused by the Rubicon Foundation and the Seattle food community."
Previously, they had announced that it would be postponed until September or early October. Ticket holders will be issued a full refund and given the opportunity to buy tickets for the 2016 Beast in the spring, before they're released to the public.
Original Post, 7/8/15, about the postponement: In a cruel twist of summer harshness, annual meatastic tradition Burning Beast has been postponed from its July 19 date. Chefs ready to roll up their sleeves and cook whole animals received the unfortunate news from event organizer Tamara Murphy, who also sent an announcement to ticket holders through Stranger Tickets.
As the Pacific Northwest has been in a drought with fire warnings across Washington and destruction around the region, it's a conscientious move for the festival.
For the uninitiated, Burning Beast is an annual one-day festival at Smoke Farm in Arlington, and a fundraiser for the nonprofit programs that take place there throughout the year. Each year, some of the best chefs in Washington and Oregon meet up to cook whole sustainably raised meats and fish with straight-up fire. Past chefs have buried and cooked animals underground, splayed them upright on a rack, and even made a rotisserie out of bicycle parts.
Tickets for this year's Beast sold out in record time, and while Murphy says they have yet to set a date for the rescheduling, it's still on. Ticket holders were given the option to hold on to their ticket or get a refund in this email from Tuesday, 7/7:
Dear Friend of Burning Beast,
Sorry to report we are postponing Burning Beast. This summer is already spectacularly hot and dry for the Pacific Northwest, dramatically increasing risk of fires. Many of you have probably read about the wildfires from Alaska to Oregon and can understand how nervous mother nature is making us feel about lighting several fires in a dry field. The state-wide burn ban has forced us to reschedule the event, but we hope you understand that our first concern is for the safety of our forests and fields, and all of the people we host. In order to act responsibly and in accordance with current burn bans, we are postponing Burning Beat until better weather can insure a safe event.
Want to come to Burning Beast in September or early October?
We are working to quickly determine a date later in the summer (we are hoping for September). As soon as the date is decided, any tickets already reserved will automatically become valid for the new date.
Want a refund?
No problem. You will be receiving an email from Stranger Tickets in the next 24 hours with instructions on a full refund.
Our sincere apologies for any inconveniences. Stay safe and cool. Pray for rain! We still hope to see you at the delayed Burning Beast. We'll be in touch soon!
Stuart Smithers, Tamara Murphy and all the chefs and Smoke Farmers
Currently, no further information is available on the Stranger Tickets page or the Burning Beast Facebook page, which (as of post time) hasn't been updated since May 11. More info to come.