Everybody Loves Naked People!!!
The first Philly Naked Bike Ride was a ride through Philadelphia with a message.
I managed to speak with organizer Clifford Greer ahead of time, and posted the story on my station’s website over the weekend. (Podcast, too!)
At first, it looked as though there wouldn’t be that many people. But as we rode our bikes closer and closer to the starting point, it became clear that there were hundreds — if not a thousand or more — bicyclists that would be participating.
Okay, that photo really doesn’t do the crowd justice… but read on and look at the videos and you’ll see what a crazy amount of people ended up participating.
At first glance, Mike and I had our doubts whether folks would actually strip down totally naked.
We ran into Andrew, who decided to go topless.
Here’s Mike, Andrew, Chris, Bobby and I in the body-painting tent:
As we got ready to start off with the ride though, I began to see more and more naked people. I guess folks were just waiting until the last minute to strip down, or dress up.
Once Clifford, one of the organizers got up to welcome everyone, folks got super excited and the clothes started to come off… especially once they saw the leaders in their full glory.
And here’s one of the other organizers, Tony:
Gerry and Josh were there, too. Like us, they didn’t go Full Monty, either:
And with the sound of drums marking the starting point, we were off!
As we started off on our 4-mile route, more and more riders started to strip. As the riders started to strip, they attracted lots and lots of spectators who pulled out their cameras and phones to take photos and videos. People laughed and cheered. It was hilarious!
As we took off, I saw all the news vans. The cameramen and my fellow reporters were there. Some waved as they saw me. I was relieved to have not gotten swept up in the excitement of nudity when I saw so many people I knew — with recording devices!
As you can see, it was a beautiful night for bike riding.
Suddenly, I looked over only to realize that Bobby and Chris took their clothes off and I saw another side of them (the backside AND the front side!)
All those naked riders stopped traffic:
Once we got into Rittenhouse, things REALLY got good! We rode past all those high end outdoor cafe restaurants on the square and everyone just watched in awe as the naked people came barreling past them! Then, we got into a traffic jam and had to stop right in front of the restaurants. Everyone that was outside eating was shocked. Lots of people were laughing. Some covered their childrens’ eyes. One woman, a totally clothed spectator, yelled at me for not being naked. I think she was actually mad at me that I was riding with the naked cyclists but didn’t show the goods myself. Anyway, here we are in the traffic jam. Here’s one of my favorite photos from the day — whomever this couple is, I hope you find this photo of you because you look so cute!
Riding past Continental Midtown…
City Hall –
By the time we got around City Hall, we had accumulated lots and lots of people. Anyone who had something to ride — skateboarders for example — joined the group! The Philly Naked Bike Riders (and friends) had taken over Market Street to the point that the cars couldn’t get through. They started chanting, “Who’s Street? OUR Street!!!!”
Wave to the tour bus! Welcome to Philly!
The ending point was Northern Liberties.
After all that, we were tired and hungry. Everyone was standing around outside the Fringe Festival bar, as if they were waiting for something to happen.
All that *naked* biking sure works up an appetite, so we ended the night by going out to dinner!