Culture Shock: American Culture Swap Deck
US Cultural Festivals > Weekly > 60 Minutes > Two Hosts and a Local guide
Two travel gurus explore the most unique, culturally rich festivals around the United States, from the Redneck Games in rural Georgia to the harsh winters of the Iditarod in Alaska. At each location, they will live and breathe with a local festival guide who they recruit to be their partner at the next festival in the following episode.
Behind the scenes
We arrive at each location two to three weeks before the festival begins. We couchsurf with pre-selected festival guides until we find one that has enough charisma and onscreen presence to be our optimal guide. From here, we fully immerse ourselves in their culture, living and breathing with the locals as they prepare for the festival.
To help visualize the show concept we will be using Burning Man as an example in the below episode breakout. However, each festival will have a very different feel and experience, keeping the show engaging and exciting, while also maintaining the same structure.
Travel to Location
The whole team hops in a RV, and hits the road to the middle of the Nevada desert. Max, Jesse, the last guide and the crew devise a game plan: what they’ve heard, what they’re excited about seeing and what they’re anxious and anticipated for the festival.
Meet the guide
They drive into an empty desert where they meet Danger Ranger, one of the found fathers of Burning Man.
History of Festival
The team sits around the fire that night, talking about the meaning of the festival and how it came about, what it means to people and why they come; elaborating on the 10 principles of Burning. Montage of old photos, voiceover, etc.
Build Festival / Meet Key People
Jesse, Max and the guide help set up the roads, build the man, and learn how the operation of the festival goes. They meet the black ops security team, help set up the airport, and train to be a greeter.
The team fully immerses themselves in the festival: experience art, lectures, classes, activities, games and dance until the sun comes up — everything from a lecture on quantum physics to a unicorn stampede.
Foreshadow to Next Episode
Talk about Ranger Danger about the next festival and say goodbye to our old guide and friend. Reflect on the experience and prelude to the next festival.
See our full bios under the meet the cast tab
Max is a daredevil and is willing to try anything and everything. He dedicates his life to learning, growing and helping others experience life to the fullest.
- Traveled to 31 different countries over 4 years
- 10 years of backcountry guiding experience
- MBA in International Business
- Ninja Warrior course tester
Jesse is an introvert on a life mission to overcome his social anxiety. He is giving up security and a stable career to make the world a better place.
- Born and raised in Alabama
- Didn’t have a passport until age 24 and now traveled to 28 countries
- Hitchhiked across all of Australia
- Best friend is an 8ft stuffed banana
The guide(s) is the master of his/her local festival and knows the ins and outs of every aspect of the event. This person is loved and respected by the community.
- Larger than life personality
- This person is defined by the festival
- Attending the festival since before they could walk
About the Show:
Every community has its own spirit, lifestyle, and history, and since America began, we’ve been looking for reasons to come together and celebrate.
Festivals are a personification of the American Dream: where the façade of normal life and societal obligations fall away, and each location’s true culture is on display.
We still come together, but things are weirder than ever.
We’re going to explore the most unique festivals, big and small, whether they’re as old as the hills or as young as Snapchat.
America is full of traditions, exciting adventures, and unique experiences. All of these are located right in your backyard. Just around the corner you can find festivals that will transport you to another world, whether you’re on summer break, just bought your first RV, or dreaming of an escape after a hard day’s work. Our country is full of amazingly diverse cultures. Let’s meet our neighbors, whether they are across the county line or a thousand miles away.
Culture Shock will excite and inspire people to see how great America is.