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Ephemerisle 2019

We are thinkers, doers, artists, dreamers, muckrakers, and builders interested in life on the water. We construct a floating city on the Sacramento River Delta and live on it for seven days.

There are no tickets, no central organizers, no rules, and no rangers to keep you safe.

Since there's no central organizer, the event only happens if people contribute.

Attending Ephemerisle[edit]

Ephemerisle 2021 - Hot Dog Island

Ephemerisle 2022 will take place July 18 - July 24!

With no gates or tickets, the challenge becomes getting there and finding a place to stay. That can often be easier said than done when you're living on the water for a week.

The most critical details can be found here:

Join the Facebook group, for active discussion for all things Ephemerisle. And here's the schedule for future years.

Boating 101[edit]

Water based gatherings present some unique challenges.

Ideally, everyone should have a least a basic understanding of these key boating concepts:

And we encourage everyone to read the Drowning Doesn't Look like Drowning article.


Ephemerisle was founded in 2009 by the Seasteading Institute in order to promote their vision of autonomous socities in the ocean. After the first year, the Seasteading Institute stepped aside due to prohibitively expensive insurance costs. A group of seasteaders and friends who had rented houseboats for the event decided to show up anyways for an informal "Not-ephemerisle" gathering.

From 2010 through 2012, there was an informal leader over the event who drew up the city plan and nominally had some decision making power. At some point, the Seasteading institute gave up any claims to the name "Ephemerisle" and "Not-Ephemerisle" took over the name.

In 2012, the community came together and unanimously made a decision to break up the gathering from a single leadership team into a set of independent autonomous islands. That has been the nature of the event ever since.

The full History of Ephemerisle.


After lively discussion in 2012 about the values that connect Ephemerislers as a community, the following received broad support:

  • Seasteading. Ephemerisle was started by The Seasteading Institute (TSI), a non-profit devoted the creation of long-term human communities on the water (aka seasteading). Although the event is now entirely community run, many of the attendees continue to be enthusiasts of living on the water.
  • Art. A society without art has no soul. Just as Burning Man has inspired art in the desert, we want to inspire art on the sea.
  • Learning. One of the goals of TSI in starting Ephemerisle was to give people who may not have much boating experience the opportunity to gain nautical skills: anchoring, sailing, ropework, etc in a relatively safe environment. In addition, many of the attendees are scientists, engineers, artists, entrepreneurs and activists, who frequently have fascinating stories to tell. There are many opportunities to learn from each other at Ephemerisle.
  • Community. Spend a week rafted up on the Delta with awesome people, and you can't up but connect with old friends, and make new friends.


if you'd like to make changes and help update this wiki, ask Adam Katz for access.