Naked Bicycle Ride in Missoula Stirs Up Controversy
By angelamontana

Posted: August 5, 2014

(screenshot from Ian McCluskey’s Vimeo video “Bare As You Dare: Portland’s World Naked Bike Ride”)

You may have heard about the upcoming controversial naked bicycle ride, organized by Nita Maddux and referred to as “Bare as You Dare”.  The August 17th event is scheduled to be held in Missoula on the river front from 10am – 11am “as a way for people to demonstrate acceptance of their bodies and express their inner child,” according to Maddux, as stated in a recent article on the Missoulian’s website.  The article also states that the City of Missoula approved a permit for the event, although “City Attorney Jim Nugent warned that participants could face indecent exposure charges if an onlooker perceives lewd behavior and reports an incident.”  In the same article, Mayor John Engen stated that “Public nudity is not necessarily indecent exposure. It is not illegal, and it is not a basis for denying a permit.”  With all of the opposition reported for this ride, it leaves one to wonder how many people are for this show-it-all ride in Missoula.

According to, Portland, Oregon is home to the “Bare As You Dare” World Naked Bike Ride, which has been an annual event since 2004, with the first ride in 2004 having 125 individuals baring it all on their bicycles, while the 2013 ride included as many as 8,150 nude riders.  The World Naked Bike Ride website states that the last ride was held on June 7th of this year, and they are still in the process of planning the 2015 ride.  You can even get your own WNBR bicycle seat cover for a donation of $5-$10…..  If you’re struggling to conclude WHY anybody would or should ride a bicycle naked in public, then check out their list of reasons from their website that they believe make naked bicycle rides beneficial.

  • Save the planet! Shifting to a carfree lifestyle is one of the most powerful things a person can do to make a real difference in reducing negative environmental impacts on this planet.
“Our message to the world is one of simplification, human harmony and love. For a future to exist for tomorrows generations, we have to stop wasting the life blood energy of the Earth, stop fighting and killing in the name of consumerist wealth accumulation and learn to love and respect all life on this planet.” – Conrad Schmidt, founder of The Work Less Party and Artists for Peace and WNBR and organizer for WNBR Vancouver, BC
  • It’s time to put a stop to the indecent exposure of people and the planet to cars and the pollution they create. We face automobile traffic with our naked bodies as the best way of defending our dignity and exposing the vulnerability faced by cyclists and pedestrians on our streets as well as the negative consequences we all face due to dependence on oil, and other forms of non-renewable energy.
  • Body image/self awareness. Cycling promotes body awareness, the fact that one can achieve a more healthy lifestyle from the exercise we achive by using self-powered transport
  • Self-sufficiency. Cycling makes us non-renewable energy sources, less dependent oil
  • Think Globally, Act locally. Cycling promotes local cycling businesses and local cycling organizations.
  • Less is more. WNBR strips the complexities from modern transport to a simplified message of cycling. For the vast majority of most peoples’ transport needs, cycles are the right vehicle for the right job. “You don’t need a wheelbarrow to carry a pea”.
  • The unabashed vehicle of the revolution. By cycling naked we declare our confidence in the beauty and individuality of our bodies and the bicycles’s place as a catalyst for change in the future of sustainability, transport, community and recreation.
“Unless we change direction, we are likely to end up where we are heading.”
  • Community-building. Bicycles create public space, enhance street life and build a sense of community
“If you see someone you know while riding, it’s easy to stop and say hello. Bicycles create public space, enhance street life and build a sense of community”– Go By Bicycle
  • Peace of mind. “People are looking for places where they’re not constantly being confronted with cars. It’s just like non-smokers seeking smoke-free space.” – Franziska Eichstaedt-Bohlig, German Green Party

After checking out the rest of the World Naked Bike Ride website, have you changed your mind about the upcoming “Bare As You Dare” ride in Missoula?

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