COVID-19 Requirements & FAQs

Gateway Burn 2022 will require “rapid” testing to be performed at the gate.

That means this year at the gate, we will be requiring you to bring a government-issued photo ID as usual, your ticket/ticket number, and a COVID test to take at the gate.

Again, you must bring an unused test to the gate and take the test upon arrival IN THE PRESENCE OF GATE VOLUNTEERS.

Please note this also means it will take some additional time to get through the gate process this year.

COVID tests need to be self provided. A limited number of free tests per household are available from the USPS and tests you purchase yourself are re-imburseable from your public or private insurance (up to $12). EIGHT more free tests per household were made available in May 2022. People can get information about acquiring COVID tests here:

It is recommended that, because of the risk of COVID, you take some of (but not limited to) the following considerations:

  • Self-isolating prior to the event if possible (so you don’t get COVID right before Gateway Burn)
  • Take a test before leaving home (so you don’t drive several hours just to be turned away at the gate)
  • Be vaccinated and boosted against COVID-19.
  • Bring multiple rapid tests in case you believe you’ve gotten a false positive result so you can test again
  • If you are traveling with someone not in your household, you can wear a mask while traveling to the Burn
  • Have contingency plans in place for if people in your vehicle (drivers and/or passengers) test positive. Those testing positive will not be admitted to Gateway Burn 2022.
  • Observe storage requirements (such as temperature) for the tests you are bringing. Some say to not be stored above and below certain temperatures which could happen if you are in a hot car or throw your test in a cold cooler.


  • Q: If one person in a vehicle tests positive will be turn away the whole vehicle?
    • A: No. We aren’t making a call as to whether or not someone has had a recent exposure. For all we know you could have been in a COVID-19 ward at a hospital unmasked and unvaccinated and then jumped right into the car to come to Gateway.
  • Q: Then what good does rapid testing do?
    • A: Rapid testing at the gate, along with our sincere hopes that attendees are vaccinated and boosted, our encouragement of consent culture (including asking for permission to hug and get close to people, among other things), and holding an event that is outdoors, are parts of what is referred to as the Swiss Cheese Model of prevention. It isn’t perfect, but it is certainly better than nothing. The model recognizes that each intervention (vaccination, testing, social distancing, isolating before hand, etc.) has “holes,” but that hopefully with enough interventions, the risks are kept to a minimum.
  • Q: What if I forget to bring my rapid test to the gate?
    • A: Then you’d better hope someone has an extra they will gift to you. Otherwise, your best bet might be to visit a store/pharmacy in Belle, Owensville, St. James, Linn, Rolla, or any other number of towns in the area. You absolutely, unequivocally need to bring an unused rapid test and take that rapid test at the direction of gate personnel (and test negative) to attend Gateway Burn 2022.
  • Q: What if I test positive at the gate?
    • A: If you have brought another rapid test, you are more than welcome to test again. These tests are not perfect, and there is a small chance you might get a false positive. The chances of a false negative, however, are higher. If you test again and are negative, you will be allowed admittance. If you test positive and do not have another test to take, we therefore have to consider that positive test result. You will be asked to leave the event and your ticket will be deferred until 2023.
    • NOTE: Take this into consideration when planning your camps and theme camps; if someone is bringing critical infrastructure for your camp, you should make plans on how your camp might exist, or not exist, if that person is sent home at the gate.
  • Q: What if I am a critical volunteer like an Event Coordinator, Board member, Department Lead/Co-Lead, etc., and I test positive at the gate?
    • A: Then the same as posted above applies to you; just because someone has a title or role doesn’t mean we can allow admittance in the event of a positive COVID test. After all, whether we volunteer 0 hours or 30 hours, we’re all participants.
  • Q: What if I am a volunteer and will be arriving prior to the gate open on Thursday? How do I complete the COVID test requirement?
    • A: You should complete the test in the presence of the department lead or co-lead for which you are volunteering. If you are granted early access for an art grant installation or camp setup, you can complete the test with an Event Coordinator or Board member.
  • Q: What happens if 10% or 20% or more of participants test positive at the gate?
    • A: Then we’ll have a smaller Burn. COVID numbers have been continuing to rise through the months of April and May. While hospitalizations are down, COVID cases are up; in part because of relaxed vaccination requirements for large indoor venues and the removal of mask requirements at many events. We don’t have a way to know where things will be by late June. If you test positive at the gate, your ticket will be deferred to 2023 and you will be required to leave the event.
  • Q: What does it mean if my ticket is deferred?
    • A: If you test positive at the gate for COVID, your ticket will be deferred to 2023. That means the ticket will be good for admission to Gateway Burn 2023. If you are unable to or choose not to attend Gateway Burn 2023, you will be able to transfer that ticket to someone else (and sell it to them at face value or less if you so choose) prior to the Gateway Burn 2023 event.
  • Q: What if I can’t afford to buy one or more COVID rapid tests?
    • You can get COVID rapid tests for free at this website. Additionally, if you purchase tests on your own to bring, you can get reimbursed by your insurance company if you are fortunate enough to have insurance. You’re expected to bring your own ID, ticket, food and other supplies to attend the Burn. This is one more additional thing you are expected to bring.