Forget Bay to Breakers -- it's time for a Thong Parade!


Well, OK -- if you're a nudist you'll probably be doing Bay to Breakers on Sunday. It's one of the few sanctioned city events you're allowed to attend in your birthday suit.

On Saturday, however, in order to draw attention to the absurdity of banning nudity in the city while still keeping it legal on its most crowded and family friendly days, the organizers of "Bare as You Dare: Thong Parade" are encouraging people to don their best mankini or panties and join them at Jane Warner Plaza in the Castro, noon-2pm tomorrow, Sat/18. "Come hang out with us!" Press release after the jump:

Saturday, May 18, 2012 From Noon to 2pm
Starts at Jane Warner Plaza, San Francisco


The THONG PARADE happens the day before the Bay to Breakers, so you have two great reasons to be in SF that weekend!

Some city officials claim the nudity ban was implemented to protect public safety by totally eliminating the huge crowds that gather because of the naked people. Leathermen, drag queens, tattooed persons and lots of other citizens draw attention.


Tell your city leaders you don't want San Francisco sanitized!

Wear a thong, a jock strap, a g-string, a cock sock, panties, briefs, boxers. Organizers have applied for a sidewalk parade permit.

Bring a sign or paint a message on your body for a group march around the Castro neighborhood, along Market Street and the City Hall/downtown area. Route maps will be provided at the event.

Be a part of the resurgence of fun and quirkiness in the Castro and beyond!

Parade group meets in JWP at noon. Parade will take place on the sidewalk and we'll be walking through the Castro and surrounding areas and then return to conclude at Harvey Milk Plaza under the Pride Flag. Come hang out with us!   



Posted by Guest on May. 17, 2013 @ 3:02 pm

men from exposing themselves to children in public, but you surely realize that your view is a minority in SF. Else of course the ban would never have passed.

Posted by Guest on May. 17, 2013 @ 3:04 pm

how our system of representative democracy works. That said, the point is that they're NOT banned during Bay to Breakers because they're actually beloved. I've already forgotten your point because responding to you is stupid of me.

Posted by admin on May. 17, 2013 @ 3:18 pm

specific events like B2B and Folson St. fair. But even in the Castro (where I live and was active in this issue) there was a clear majority in favor of the ban. In other neighborhoods, even more so naturally.

So if there wasn't even the support in the Castro for this, you can bet there wasn't elsewhere. You need to accept that you lost this one, and calling it "absurd" means little more than you don't like it, because most people support the ban.

Posted by Guest on May. 17, 2013 @ 3:27 pm

I do know that I have a choice not to go near the vomiting frat boy fest that is bay to breakers.

I've seen naked guys wandering afar from Castro and Market to lower Haight and down towards 16th and Valencia.

If you don't want to see naked guys, and puking idiots stay away from Bay to Breakers is better then, if you don't want to see naked guys stay indoors.

Posted by Matlock on May. 17, 2013 @ 3:29 pm

Couldn't a race be designed that doesn't completely cut the city in half?

Posted by Guest on May. 17, 2013 @ 3:30 pm

It would only do it for an hour or two.

Instead all these people walk the race looking ridiculous and taking hours.

Posted by Matlock on May. 17, 2013 @ 3:51 pm

All those people looking ridiculous (to you) are what gives B2B its local character, and separate it from every other cookie cutter marathon in every other city.

I actually live in the path of it, and I don't find it disruptive. Yes, parking isn't very easy for one night. But I found parking on the next block, within sight of my home. And yes, it took me ten extra minutes to get to where I was going because I needed to drive a little slower. Big deal.

Now what I really can't stand, is that infernal Nike Women's Marathon. The participation is orders of magnitude less, and yet Nike feels the need to commandeer blocks and blocks of parking. Parking goes from being a minor hassle with B2B, to a serious nightmare. And for what? To facilitate the promotion of a mega-corporation whose workers are abused in Chinese sweat shops? Nike gets good PR for being oh-so-supportive of women; meanwhile its female workers in China get slapped across the face by their bosses with the soles of Nike shoes. And residents of San Francisco are forced to participate in Nike's whitewash at their own expense.

I'll take B2B over that shit any day!

Posted by Greg on May. 19, 2013 @ 5:56 pm
Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 5:59 am

I'm defending the Chinese women who are being abused in Nike factories. You think it's hunky dory that Chinese women get slapped across the face in Nike factories with the soles of Nike shoes. You're the one who's anti-Chinese, not me. You racist pigs are all the same, trying to deflect your own vile racism by calling others racist.

Posted by Greg on May. 20, 2013 @ 9:17 pm

I'm sure they have people in their lives that love them, but if you can show me 10 citizens of SF who honestly consider these guys "beloved" for showing their flabby old asses, I'll donate $20 to a charity of your choice (sorry, but no terrorist groups. I already donate to them when I pay my taxes).

You seem to think it's hypocritical to allow nudity at a City sponsored public event like Bay to Breakers, yet not allow it in the Castro on a daily basis. Sorry, but San Franciscans have decided that they don't want to look at those nasty nut sacks every fucking day. Deal with it.

p.s. - Are you guys seriously using SisQo as your poster-boy? Your credibility might take a hit on that one and, to be perfectly frank, you guys can't afford to lose what little you've got.

Posted by Snoozers on May. 17, 2013 @ 3:58 pm

So it's ok for trim, athletic young men to expose themselves to children?

Nudity is as old as civilization, if not older. Check out NatGeo sometimes: some kids are raised with nude adults and live their whole lives with a string on their nuts, and that's it.

Maybe bald, fat middle aged men need to organize to fight this kind of overt discrimination.

Everyone deserves the right to expose themselves to children: after all they were probably made by nude adults in the first place.

Posted by Guest on May. 18, 2013 @ 7:01 pm

Castro and Market is a busy intersection.

Progressives complaining about too many laws and the city banning something...

Posted by Matlock on May. 17, 2013 @ 3:19 pm

Nudists are fine and natural, why forbid this

Posted by Guest on May. 17, 2013 @ 6:57 pm

and that we live in a democracy where that matters more than what you personally think.

There are still places where you can be legally naked. Go to one of those places.

Posted by Guest on May. 18, 2013 @ 10:02 am

as a castro resident, please do not promote this event or events like this that bring so many bridge and tunnel weirdos into my neighborhoodhood and using it as their playground where anything goes. this is my neighborhood. please respect it. these same people would not behave like this in their own communities. thank you.

Posted by edmond and mark on May. 18, 2013 @ 9:17 am

You don't even live in the Castro, and your real names aren't even Edmund and Mark. You post this on every forum so please STFU already.

Posted by Guest on May. 18, 2013 @ 7:15 pm

It's very easy to claim that the "majority" of San Franciscans supported the nudity ban but substantiating that is much more difficult. During his obsessive and decidedly unethical campaign to eradicate urban nudists, Scott Wiener made numerous statements about "mass support" but these were largely exaggerations, half-truths, and outright lies. The most egregeous was the "endorsement" of the Castro business owner's group MUMC. That endorsement was approved at a meeting where around 30 members out of over 250 showed up. Two thirds of those at the meeting indeed supported Wiener. That's 20 people out of over 250. My guess is that most members were savvy enough to appreciate that nudists' money is just as good as anyone else's and in a sagging economy, they weren't too keen on chasing away potential revenue. Nudists buy things just like everyone else and they'd love to shop at stores that (god forbid) might welcome them.

Now let's take a look at what the public really supports, this time with verifiable facts. A recent scientific study of San Francisco residents (performed by a respected polling firm) showed that 49 percent strongly supported the right to be nude in public while a further 15 percent supported it less emphatically. That's 63 percent who are fine with urban nudists.

As far as the ban being the result of our "system of representative democracy" nothing could be further from the truth. Scott Wiener disgracefully hijacked the public opinion hearing where supposedly objective members of the the Board of Supervisors were to listen to citizens and respond accordingly. He managed to replace the one subcommittee member (of three) who had ever expressed support for nudists and then in an act of unfathomable arrogance proceeded to run the very meeting where his own legislation was being vetted! Not surprisingly, 63 percent of those who came to speak opposed the ban (see poll above). But of course no amount of evidence or testimony would have made the least bit of difference in the process because Wiener already had the five colleagues he needed in his pocket. Those votes were promised well before the sacred public hearing in November. There's your "representative democracy" in action.

The "Thong Parade" was intended to demonstrate the utter pointlessness of the ban. Thanks to Scott Wiener, you'll no longer see the handful of naked people who chose to roam the streets of the city on warm afternoons. You will, however, see far more folks wearing the tiniest fluorescent colored outfits that barely cover (and actually draw attention to) the very body parts that Wiener's fans are so offended by. You'll also see people wearing strap-on dildoes and other novelty apparel. All of this is totally legal but simply choosing to enjoy some fresh air and sunshine "au naturel" is against the law. Try to explain that logic to your children.

And before you go off on me about the "harm to kids", let me point out that numerous respected studies have clearly shown that children raised around non-sexual nudity tend to grow up with fewer emotional hangups and a better sense of body acceptance and self esteem. Heaven forbid we should teach our children that the bodies they were born with are nothing to be ashamed of.

Sooooooo, be careful what you wish for. Scott Wiener undoubtedly hoped the free-spirits of the city would simply roll over once his ban took effect. Regrettably for him, there are too many of them out there. Nudists would most certainly have preferred NOT to wear idiotic and provocative outfits but since their right to be naked was taken away, they'll probably resort to this more and more. Which would you rather look at?

Posted by Guest on May. 19, 2013 @ 7:20 pm

it's fairly clear that families in St. Francis Wood will feel the same way even more so.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 6:03 am

This issue has nothing at all to do with gays or straights. The "urban nudists" I've met represent all lifestyles.

And as far as any majority supporting the ban goes, I guess I just haven't seen signs of that yet. In all of the visits that my wife and I made while nudity was legal, we encountered one woman who was not happy and voiced that to us. To her credit, she actually took the time to dialogue with us and we agreed to disagree. Conversely, we encountered a great many folks who expressed their approval and shared that they were proud of their city's forward thinking tolerance of alternative lifestyles. They told us that folks like us helped to differentiate San Francisco from all other large cities and keep it unique. We heard that from men and women, gays and straights, young and old, even families with children. We didn't roam around nude for reactions, we did it because it was a wonderful feeling of freedom that only this very special city allowed. On a warm afternoon, it simply felt nice to be free of confining clothing.

During the Thong Parade, I was very careful to really watch the response of the public. For two hours, the group wandered around the Castro with their silly outfits and signs and what I saw was an overwhelming sense of either support or indifference. Only one person was verbally abusive and of course that's to be expected with this kind of stretching of social boundaries.

I guess my only question to ban supporters would be . . . what harm are the nudists causing? Please don't respond by saying "I don't like looking at naked people". There are a good many things I don't particularly care to see on the streets but I certainly wouldn't support banning them unless they were causing harm or damage. Society has room for all kinds of people. Just because you don't happen to agree with my lifestyle choices doesn't give you the right to censor them.

If there's such an overwhelming support for Scott Wiener and his ban, why did he feel the need to act in such a dishonest and manipulative manner during his quest to abolish nudity? Why did he offer to let the nudist leaders work on self-policing the few "bad apples" and then only three days later submit his city-wide ban legislation? Why did he even show up at the public opinion hearing, let alone take over and run the show? Whether you support nudity or not, you have to see that as a serious conflict of interest and a disgraceful dismissal of the foundation of why he was placed in office.

If the public truly wanted the ban, it seems like the designated process should have taken care of it on its own. If the majority opposed nudity, why were two thirds of the speakers at the hearing there to speak out against the ban? Incidentally, most of those folks weren't even nudists. They just valued their city's famed tolerance. It was clear that Scott Wiener and his two confederates had virtually no interest in listening to citizens who happen to want San Francisco to remain free. Their minds were made up long before that hearing.

Nudity has been legal in the city for over 100 years. The public didn't effect a change to that status; six elected officials made that happen.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 7:03 am

This is a non-issue. I don't even know a single eprson who supports these attention-seeking egomaniacs, and I live in the Castro.

Move on.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 8:32 am

You don't know a single person who is okay with the nudists?! Even I will admit to having friends who oppose public nudity.

Why do I devote so many words to this issue? While it may be trivial to you, it matters a great deal to a lot of folks, otherwise it would have died a quiet death on February 1st when the ban took effect.

People like you make sweeping statements about "everyone" opposing the nudists yet I haven't seen any evidence of this mass hatred. And as far as the nudists "moving on" goes, I wouldn't bet on it. You got your ban so you won't have to look at anyone's genitals but you better be prepared for an onslaught of outrageous thongs (and worse) in the coming months.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 12:28 pm

After all, we are all naked sometimes.

I do not know anyone who supports the "rights" of far, bald, ugly middle-aged men to stand around naked in a public street in a blatant exercize of self-absorption.

Deliberately trying to offend is adolescent.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 12:40 pm

. . . urban nudists were all young, slim, had a full head of hair, and were visually attractive? If that was the case, would you still feel that those folks were "deliberately trying to offend"? Clearly, you have no capacity to appreciate why someone might wish to be free of clothes on a warm day.

Your message reflected more ignorance and hatred than any semblance of an intelligent dialogue and that speaks volumes.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 1:14 pm

Everyone I speak to has said the same thing - why is it the people you would least want to see naked that do it?

Warm day? Give me a break? You can walk down the street now with the skinniest of swimming trunks and nothing else, and that is fine. It's not about keeping cool, and in fact worry about sunburn.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 1:33 pm

It's okay to walk down the street in what amounts to a tiny little brightly-colored cloth sack covering JUST your genitals but it's illegal to simply be nude. How does that make ANY sense at all? How does that solve ANY issue the conservatives had in the Castro? For goodness sake, someone can legally wear a strap-on dildo and take a stroll but they cannot sunbathe nude! Doesn't that seem just a little bit ridiculous?

You and I will never agree on the merits of being nude in public but what would you rather see on the street? A naked person out for a walk, or someone with an outfit designed specifically to draw attention to their private parts? Trust me, there will be FAR more of the latter out in force than there ever were simple nudists before the ban.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 1:51 pm

offend others and upset children should find a place to be an exhibitionist where it's OK to do so like, say, the Folson Street Fair.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 1:59 pm

Children are NOT harmed by the sight of nudity nor are they naturally "upset" by it. They have to be taught that the human body is something to be ashamed of and to cover up. Studies have consistently shown that kids raised around nudism tend to have a more positive attitude about body acceptance and a healthier self-esteem. Isn't that what a parent wants for their children? I know I certainly do.

With that said, there are still people who will abuse the privelege of being nude in public and they should be dealt with. There are laws in place to handle genuinely inappropriate behavior but simple nudity does not constitute lewdness and California courts have supported this. Choosing to be nude when allowed by law does not make one a deviant, pervert, or even an exhibitionist. It's just a choice. Sadly, that choice has been taken away but it won't mean the nudists are going to disappear from the scene.

As far as "offending" others, there are a great many things people do on the streets every day that might irritate or offend others but do you really want to see the government start to ban them all? You happen to be very offended by public nudity and want to see it banished. What if someone said they can't tolerate tattoos? Or maybe they were offended by cross-dressers? Drag queens? What ban comes next in an effort to "sanitize" our community and turn it into the "Middle America" that Scott Wiener's supporters seem to want?

And on that note, I find it somewhat troubling when I hear angry Castro residents claiming the nudists have added an "undesirable" element to their ostensibly "family-friendly" neighborhood. Don't get me wrong. I LOVE the Castro and always have, but it's decidedly NOT conducive to what I would call traditional conservative family values. I walk down the street and see numerous porn shops with graphic window displays, head shops, and power poles covered with VERY provocative posters for sex shows. There was talk of the nudists "taking over" Jane Warner Plaza simply because they enjoyed relaxing there, just like everyone else. With them gone, the seats are now often occupied by the unfortunate homeless folks who were displaced when Scott Wiener heartlessly had the benches removed from Harvey Milk Plaza.

I guess I don't see nudists as the "blight" that some claim them to be. They're certainly unique and I'll admit that no other large city in the country would have allowed them to roam free, but what is it that differentiates San Francisco from all of those other urban areas? What makes this place so special and makes folks want to come from all over to see it. I believe it's the things that they can't find anywhere else. One of those things was the street nudists.

Posted by Guest on May. 21, 2013 @ 7:27 am

Again, nobody wants to ban nudity in private places and special events like B2B and Folsom.

But it's just common decency not to do that on a public street, and what is really sad about this is that we had to pass a law because a small number of people wouldn't behave respectfully.

Posted by Guest on May. 21, 2013 @ 7:40 am

This is a recurring theme that simply doesn't hold water. Kids have no natural aversion to nudity and in fact if they were left to their own devices, many of them would probably be running around naked all the time. It's adults who teach them that our bodies are a shameful thing.

My wife and I always tried to be respectful and steer away from kids while out on the street. More often than not, however, they'd simply giggle. I never saw a single child who appeared the least bit traumatized or bothered by our nudity. One young mother with two kids in tow smiled at us and said "Lovely day for a walk!". How 'bout teaching children that the world is full of all kinds of people who lead a multitude of varied lifestyles? After all, that's what they're going to find when they grow up.

Frankly, I'd like to see anti-nudity folks just cut to the chase, admit that they simply don't want to look at naked people, and leave it at that. Using children as the primary reason to eradicate public nudity is pretty cowardly, and claiming nudity is an afront to the "family values" of the "new" Castro is utter nonsense.

Posted by Guest on May. 21, 2013 @ 8:27 am

Most nudists are reasonable and courteous folks. Even though nudity was technically legal anywhere in the city, there were many neighborhoods where I wouldn't have taken a naked stroll either for safety reasons or out of respect for the residents. Places like St. Francis Wood. The Castro happened to be one of several areas that were welcoming and this felt like a win-win to me. My wife and I brought our hard-earned dollars and spent them at businesses who were enlightened enough to allow us to do so.

Opponents would say the nudists were "taking advantage" of the Castro's unusual acceptance of alternative lifestyles but I believe that very tolerance was a point of positive distinction for the famously open-minded neighborhood. And whether you like it or not, it also helped to draw in a good many tourists from near and far. Folks who delighted in chatting with the offbeat SF "street nudists".

Opponents would also argue that we'd never think of strolling naked in our own neighborhood and of course that's true . . . because we weren't allowed to! How is the rare tolerance San Francisco is famous for a bad thing?

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 7:14 am

But when someone does it in a public place knowing that there is widespread opposition, then it just becomes an ego issue.

These guys don't want to be naked - they want to be noticed and notorious.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 8:33 am

. . . . . where is the "widespread opposition"?

And is it so difficult to grasp why someone might prefer to be nude on a warm afternoon? Why does that make them some sort of deviant or pervert? My wife and I have no desire to be notorious, or even "noticed". The nudists I've spent time with would just prefer to be accepted as yet another element of society.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 8:47 am
Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 8:34 am

The nudists I hang around with are all decent folks.

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 8:44 am

As soon as Supervisor Wiener is done banning horrible street noise, he needs to focus on the canine genitalia on display at EVERY dog park in the city. You thought Castro & Market was bad? What about Noe & Duboce? Lest someone think I'm joking, what if a school field trip were to walk by? How would the chaperone explain why some dogs still have their testicles? This city needs to mandate diapers for dogs, and massive fines for owners and walkers who think our domesticated animals can shamelessly strut their pereniums in public.

Posted by Mrs. Grundy on May. 21, 2013 @ 7:51 am

Before a child playing in a park gets seriously bitten.

Posted by Guest on May. 21, 2013 @ 8:02 am

Pictures and a brief write-up from the Thong Parade can be found here:

Posted by Guest on May. 20, 2013 @ 9:45 am

Are you Single and a Nudist? Having any luck meeting partner who are also nudists?

Posted by sarababe on May. 22, 2013 @ 12:03 am

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