Up to 200 naked cyclists expected on city’s streets

ORGANISERS of a World Naked Bike Ride event which is due to take place in Cork today are praying for favourable weather conditions with in the region of 200 people expected to participate if the sun shines.

The Naked Bike Ride is organised by cycling activists as part of the Cork Cycling Arts Festival. Riders are encouraged to go “as bare as you dare”. The event will go ahead even if the weather is poor.

Organisers say the ride will be held early to respect people’s “sensibilities”.

“We respect people’s sensibilities around this point. Each year we will have it a little later, as the public accept it more. In the UK where attitudes about public nudity are similar, all rides now take place at peak traffic times, and the police are supportive,” said one of the organisers.

There will be a signature photograph of participants at a Cork city landmark.

The first Naked Bike Ride was celebrated in Zaragoza, Spain, in 2001.

World Naked Bike Ride (WNBR) is an international clothing-optional bike ride in which participants ride together en masse on human-powered transport (bicycles, skateboards, rollerblades, roller skates) to protest against oil dependency and celebrate the power and individuality of our bodies.

Nudity is encouraged, but not mandatory, on all rides. There are more than 100 WNBR events worldwide.

Organisers say a decision was made to link the ride with the vulnerability of cyclists on the road.

“Cycling naked serves two purposes. It emphasises how vulnerable the cyclist is on the road, and it draws attention to the issue. A typical slogan painted on riders bodies is Can you see me now driver?”

The Naked Bike Ride has gained interest among artists who contribute to the occasion by painting on participants’ bodies.

The 2010 Naked Bike Ride has raised interest in body art in Cork city, with 20 artists and 20 models lined up for body painting.

This year’s ride was due to start with a body painting party at 5.00am in Cork city centre, followed by the cycle at 5.45am.

The venue of the body painting work shop, the starting point for the cycle, the location of the photo shoot and the route was being kept a close secret and only released to participants, close to the time of the ride.


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