First-round leader Peter Tomasulo managed a 2-under 70 to drop into second place at 9-under-par 135. Paul Claxton, whose lone tour win came at the 2001 Louisiana Open, carded a 68 to take third place at minus-7.
Steve Wheatcroft and Matt Kuchar each posted rounds of 5-under 67 to share fourth place at 6-under-par 138. Omar Uresti notched a 7-under 65 to climb into a tie for sixth place at minus-5 with Erik Compton (67).
Burns opened with three straight pars. He then birdied the par-5 fourth to get to 6 under. Burns made it two straight as he dropped in a 15-foot birdie try on the fifth at The Dominion Club.
The 31-year-old made it three straight as he birdied No. 6 from 18 feet out. Burns got to 9 under thanks to a birdie at the par-4 eighth after he dropped his approach within 5 feet.
Burns, whose best tour finish was a tie for 17th last year at the Northeast Pennsylvania Classic, drained a 20-footer for birdie at 11. He moved to 11 under with a 6-foot birdie putt on the 15th.
'I hit the ball great today. I put the ball in position off the tee, hit a lot of fairways and gave myself a lot of good chances,' Burns stated. 'If you are hitting a lot of fairways, it's going to make a big difference.'
Burns knocked his second shot to the par-5 18th within a foot of the cup and tapped in for eagle.
'I hit a 3-iron from 235 yards out and it was one of the best 3-irons I've hit in a long time,' said Burns of his approach at the last. 'It felt great when I hit it, but I didn't know if it would be long or short because the wind was gusting so much.'
Tomasulo, who won the Alberta Classic last year, got his round going with a 25-foot eagle putt at No. 4. He nearly holed his approach at the next as his second shot stopped within inches of the cup.
After kicking in that birdie, Tomasulo stuck his 8-iron second shot 2 feet from the cup at the sixth and made that birdie to get to 11 under. However, he faltered to three straight bogeys to tumble back to minus-8.
Tomasulo two-putted for birdie at the 12th. He moved back to 10 under with an up-and-down birdie on the short par-4 15th. Tomasulo gave that stroke right back as he bogeyed the 16th after finding the rough off the tee. He nearly bogeyed the last, but managed to get up and down for par.
'It was kind of a crazy day and a crazy way to finish,' admitted Tomasulo. 'That was kind of a fluke thing going over the green into the water on 18, but I was able to save it. It was really an up-and-down day for me.'
Eric Axley, Stephen Collins, Joe Daley and Steve Larick share eighth place at 4-under-par 140. Dicky Pride, Michael Putnam, Brandt Snedeker, Bryce Molder, Charlie Wi, Tyler Williamson and David Hearn are one stroke further back at minus-3.
Defending champion Chad Collins is part of a group of players tied for 19th at 2-under-par 142.
The cut line fell at 1-over-par 145 with 60 players moving on to the final two rounds.