Until then, there's the 26th annual Nude Recreation Week. From Monday, July 9, to Sunday, July 15, nudists and the people who love them will affirm their much-debated right to bare arms, legs, and all else (no concealed weapons in this crowd) in a Nude Nation show of solidarity, with special nude events like open houses, art classes, blood drives, and even some nude Olympics.
In Miami-Dade the hub of activity, naturally, will be Haulover Park's clothing-optional beach, where the naturist organization South Florida Free Beaches (SFFB) will host National Nude Weekend festivities, scheduled to include catered food for sale, volleyball, sand sculpting, body painting, skin-cancer screenings by onsite doctors, and kid-friendly activities, like the balloon toss ("To make that a little more interesting, I plan on keeping the balloons on ice while we're waiting," notes 62-year-old SFFB president Tom Chittenden, a nudist since 1969).
Appropriately Chittenden and fellow nude-beachers will wear their birthday suits as they celebrate the birth of SFFB, which took place 21 years ago on Nude Weekend at Virginia Key Beach, as well as the tenth anniversary of Haulover's popular quarter-mile clothing-optional stretch of sand, also established by SFFB on Nude Weekend.
Chittenden, a retired public-school teacher and Mensa member who founded SFFB in 1980 and recently rejoined after a ten-year hiatus, remembers the early days, before organization, when nude recreation wasn't quite so relaxed. "It was rather common for roughnecks and rowdies at that time, gawkers and troublemakers, to just come and surround a couple on their blanket and stand there and make lewd remarks or comment on the woman's body, and this couple could do nothing but lay there and wish it weren't happening," he says.
"I was arrested four times [on Virginia Key], in the old days," he adds. "I've never been convicted, and so the court system has proven four times that there's nothing wrong or illegal with nudity -- without lewd and lascivious conduct."
So for all involved this is more than just a day at the beach. "Our legal-defense fund is supported by these activities," explains Chittenden. That legal-defense fund has helped SFFB employ a full-time lobbyist in Tallahassee since 1993, keeping an eye out for pesky anti-nudity laws the morally outraged continue to propose.
But today the nudist's concerns are of a different nature. "No pudding toss," he says, referring to one of his originally planned Nude Weekend highlights. "The parks department will not allow what they call a food fight.... It is hilarious fun, because when everybody is totally nude you can, you know.... It's chocolate pudding...."