Playa downtown: Burning Man experience comes to Las Vegas

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Steve Marcus

Tour guide HeidyNoelle Stamper, left, James Durbin of Lyft, and Victoria Pomo pose in the Dragon Art Car after a media tour in downtown Las Vegas Thursday, July 13, 2017. The free tours, sponsored by Zappos and Lyft, leave from Container Park from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays in July.

Fri, Jul 14, 2017 (10:06 a.m.)

If you’ve always wanted to experience Burning Man and aren’t able to make the trek to Northern Nevada, Lyft and Zappos are bringing a popular portion of the annual cultural event to you.

Residents and visitors can take a free ride on a 20-foot long LED-lit dragon Burning Man vehicle in downtown Las Vegas through July. Burning Man attendees often elaborately decorate their vehicles, often depicting mythical creatures, which is a large part of the event’s attraction.

"Like most kids, I dreamt about flying on dragons growing up," said Yacob Girma, Lyft Las Vegas general manager. "It's amazing to see my childhood dream come to life through Lyft and Dragon Mode."

Each Friday and Saturday night, riders can hail a ride on the technologically advanced serpent, dubbed the Dragon Art Car, by opening the Lyft app and locating Dragon Mode. Users then follow directions to the pickup/drop-off spot at Container Park on Fremont and Seventh streets.

Prospective passengers must make contact with a Lyft team member at the site, sign a waiver and obtain a wristband to reserve a spot in the queue. Passengers are called on a first-come, first-served basis.

The Dragon Art Car holds eight people and runs about 15 minutes depending on traffic. Riders can expect to see more than 20 installations on the tour.

The route features various downtown art installations, starting at the 55-foot fire-breathing Praying Mantis in front of Container Park, and includes Big Rig Jig, a 50-foot winding sculpture made up of semitrucks and a mural by world-renowned street artist Shepard Fairey.

"The Downtown Las Vegas art scene has grown tremendously in the past few years," Girma said. "Dragon Mode connects riders to these amazing art installations in a way that has never been done before. Las Vegas has truly never seen anything like this."

Dragon Mode will be available from 7 p.m. to 1 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays through the end of the month.

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