Nude Sunbathing Banned on Fire Island Beaches


Nude sunbathing has been banned on beaches all along Fire Island, Newsday reports:

A decades-long tradition of nude sunbathing on Fire Island beaches is coming to an end this summer: Fire Island National Seashore authorities have announced plans to enforce long-standing laws banning the practice…

…Koschmann also said some social media sites carry invitations to meet for public sex on the beach.

The fact that public nudity is illegal in New York was another compelling reason to change the policy, since FINS maintains joint jurisdiction with the state, she said. The ban also will be enforced at four other Fire Island beaches where nude sunbathing is known to take place — including the tract of land in front of Sailors Haven, from Point O' Woods to Cherry Grove.


  1. ratbastard says

    Reality Check:

    NO ONE really wants to see fat middle aged guys sunbathing in tight lil’ speedos or au naturale. Use to see a gay guy walking around city streets wearing skin tight spandex pants and shorts and a wifebeater. He was charitably out of shape [not that it would be any better if he was a young gym rat] and it was a sight for sore eyes.

    People, have some self-respect, for Christ’s sake. Just because you can legally do it, doesn’t mean you should. Now you can’t legally let it all hang out on F.I. Good.

  2. SFshawn says

    It’s now ‘illegal’ in San Francisco EXCEPT for ‘street fairs’ like Folsom,etc. So depending on the day,the event or whatever government entity/anti-nudity person is ‘offended’ determines when someone can legally or illegally show of their naked bodies. Such a waste of human and financial resources. Homophobia at it’s worst.

  3. Pete N SFO says

    Did you hear that San Francisco? tik-tok, It’s just a matter of time before you’ll need to cover up on Baker Beach. And you folks thought you could pick & choose how it gets applied… seriously?!

    People should be allowed to be naked on the beach… and how your body is perceived by others has nothing whatsoever to do with it.

  4. says

    lame. what’s wrong with nudity? i don’t care what shape or size you are, if you’re out there enjoying the sun then you rock on and enjoy it, doesn’t bother me one bit.

    one of my favourite things about nude beaches *is* the diversity of body types; it’s not about “only the young and flat-stomached” being free to be nude – it’s anyone who doesn’t give a flip what others think.

    and nudity isn’t even inherently sexual.

    how about this: if you’re a puritanical ninny, Fire Island aint for you.


  5. says

    This is sad and outrageous that the decades-long tradition of nude sun bathing in Fire Island is coming to an end. Nudity on Fire Island, specifically Cherry Grove and The Pines, was a part of the landscape like the water and sun. It was also an expression of freedom. Folks fretting about fat middle aged guys will do so whether those men are nude or clothed. But they are not fretting about how this shows how our freedoms and liberties can be chipped away bit by bit. Where is the outrage? Where are more folks who can join my voice in standing up, speaking out and fighting back? Gay people have traditionally been leaders in teaching the world how to live and love from a vantage point different from the norm. What I experience more and more is outspoken conformity and conservatism by LGBT folks. Our community (actually the world) is diverse and those that want to be nude should feel just as free to do so as those who want to cover up.

  6. says

    and what i’ve always loved most about Fire Island is that that magical island just felt like “ours” – and i don’t just mean gay men, nor “fit young people who aren’t old and fat”, which some commenters seem to have a problem with…for no intelligent reason.

    it’s an escape from the world of judgment and limitations.

    Charles R-G, thank you for your comment.

  7. Fensox says

    Ugh, really Ratbastard? Being naked with other men is great, in a non-sexual body freedom kind of way. Next time you see a fatty nude on the beach, try getting naked and hanging out with him. You might find that you transcend your need to associate nudity and sex.

  8. Fensox says

    Ugh, really Ratbastard? Being naked with other men is great, in a non-sexual body freedom kind of way. Next time you see a fatty nude on the beach, try getting naked and hanging out with him. You might find that you transcend your need to associate nudity and sex.

  9. David in NYC says

    Uhm just hop the Seastreak to Sandy Hook and hang with the billion other naked gays in your birthday suit. I think this is probably ill-advised. People don’t avoid FIP because of naked men, but a lot come there for it. It’ll be there $$$ loss.

  10. Derrick from Philly says

    Beach nudity should only be allowed for those of us over the age of fifty. Who the hell wants to see a bunch of twenty-somethings running around naked? Immature creatures.

  11. Mike in nyc says

    All who fear and dislike the idea of nude beaches should vacation on the sunny fully clothed beaches of Iran. You will love it there!

    When will such backward fear based Puritanial thinking end? Bodies are part of the Natural Order, don’t fear life.

  12. Mike in nyc says

    All who fear and dislike the idea of nude beaches should vacation on the sunny fully clothed beaches of Iran. You will love it there!

    When will such backward fear based Puritanial thinking end? Bodies are part of the Natural Order, don’t fear life.

  13. GB says

    The married crowd can only bear seeing one meager crotch a day–their husbands. The married couple – the new army of two – will rule the day. They only permit perfect specimens of naked guys that are online.

  14. Derrick from Philly says

    “Maybe ratbastard plans on being dead before he’s middleaged”

    Hunh? Then he’s been dead for years. Maybe he’s a vampire.

    But, FENSOX, you may be wrong about Ratbastard not liking the full-figured guys. He’s fair & open-minded (you’ve read his comments over the years). Yes, he may be attracted to the big boys…as long as they are very very very very white. Or maybe if they tan orange like John Boehner.

  15. sean says

    Of course Derrick had to inject race into the issue. He’s obsessed with race. Obsessed.

    My boyfriend is pasty white, and I think he’s hot. I’m Asian, but there’s noting wrong with a pasty white boy in my book.

  16. TC says

    The report states that they will focus its “education and enforcement efforts” in specific areas, and the Cherry Grove and FIP beaches are not on that list…. yet.

    Don’t know how the Suffolk cops will react.

    I think the headline is misleading.

  17. Derrick from Philly says


    you have the sense of humor of a pasty orange boy.

    And what the hell is “pasty” anyway? Some kind of skin condition? If so, you’re better man than I thought, Sean. Bless ya’, honey.

  18. Pedro says

    Sorry, I just don’t get the nude thing. During a week in San Francisco, where my sister lives, I went for ice-cream with my 6 yr. old niece and nephew and a man, at least 60, stopped his bike and took off his clothes right there in the street while we were chomping down on our cones. I couldn’t finish my treat. I mean it was pure exhibitionism, he was staring right at us. It was a pathetic cry for attention.Was he a pedo? I have no idea…

    If you want to be naked do it in your private homes, or get together and buy a private beach where you can all galavant together. I don’t want my little niece and nephew forced to be the audience for middle-aged men desperately trying to recapture the long gone zeitgeist. The 70’s and 80’s are over and are not coming back again, move on. Yes, I am puritanical, so be it. Perhaps it has something to do with being born in 1988…after the party had been stopped by AIDS. But I just don’t get it. And if I have children, I will surely not want them visually abused either.

  19. says

    Pedro, then don’t go to Fire Island. You were born in 1988? Eek. that’s sad. how does someone so young end up being less hip and liberated than my grandmother, who died at age 97???

    it’s ok. you don’t get it. just remember: because you’re body-shy doesn’t mean everyone else is. no matter what (probably fabricated) stories you want to make up to excuse it.

  20. Derrick from Philly says

    Well, Sean,

    you made me look up the definition of “pasty”. You remember, what you called you boyfriend’s complexion.

    The definition: having a pale, lifeless appearance; pale or unhealthy looking.

    Sean, guuuurrrl, don’t you let your boyfriend read this blog tonight.

    And what is this dramatic statement that I am, “obsessed with race. Obsessed.”

    All that drama. What? Are you planning to audition for the lead in “The Story of Anna May Wong”? (Who I adored)

  21. says

    If only Americans were as hung up on gun violence as they are on nudity. I’m not sure why seeing a human body in its natural state–whatever that natural state happens to look like–freaks some people out so much. I’ve never been to Fire Island so no loss for me, but how typical that enforcing nudity codes is the priority over so many things that actually harm people’s lives.

  22. MichaelJ says

    Nude beaches are places for everyone to enjoy being free of clothes and be around others doing the same. Yes, people look and size each other up, so to speak, but most all are also are accepting of others, as it should be.

    If you don’t like to see naked people at the beach, don’t go to a nude beach. There are far more options for people who want to avoid nude beaches than there are for those of us who would rather be naked. And if you only want to see a certain type of person naked, get some porn.

    This is ban goes totally against the nature of Fire Island, particularly in Cherry Grove and the Pines. I hope someone organizes a big nude-in protest on Fire Island when the weather gets warmer.

  23. says

    why do i get the feeling everyone supporting this ban never has, and never will, set foot on a fire island beach?

    on another note, THANK YOU, to all the fat old people who took slams from ridiculous commenters on here. your carefree attitudes about yourselves helped me get over my own body issues.

    now let’s go for a long naked walk on the beach.

  24. Randy says

    Reality check: don’t want to see it, then don’t go.

    As I understand it, if the government fails to enforce a law for decades, one does not merely start enforcing it again. That’s not legal.

  25. says

    define nudity. in toronto it’s perfectly legal for a woman to be topless in public.

    join the rest of the civilized world? you mean the people who worry more about seeing a penis and not about the insanely bigots running around armed with guns?

    newsflash – being a puritanical ninny doesn’t mean you’re civilized. and for all the “the 70s are over” comments. yes. they are. but it’s 2013 – it’s not like the 70s ended and reverted back to 1950.

  26. TC says

    It is not my job to entertain you, Ratbastard, nor do I need to conform to your ideals. If you don’t want to see naked people, then WHY ARE YOU AT A NUDE BEACH? You could go to, like, ANY OTHER BEACH IN THE WORLD.

    I am really rather surprised Andy has allowed you to post such an offensive comment.

  27. ***** says

    RB, enforcement of the ban on nudity will have no effect on “fat men in tight lil speedos” other than possibly increasing the number of little speedos. A person in a speedo is not nude, so there will be no ban on anyone wearing their speedo, regardless of how fat they are and how much you dislike seeing them on the beach.

  28. KeepItSimple says

    Public nudity serves the same “purpose” as public sex, public urination/defecation, public exhibitionism….none. Could someone articulate an actual “need” other than “I just want to”. Anyone?

  29. says

    it is beautifully and sadly ironic, though – keep nudity off of beaches, especially on an island that has historically been a safe-haven for Society’s Misfits for decades, but make sure everyone and their inbred cousin is armed to the teeth. anywhere. at all times.


  30. stranded says

    Body acceptance and connection with nature are two of the hallmarks of a healthy happy adult human. To be naked in nature with others is a relaxing and enjoyable activity where judgments and ego become irrelevent. If you hate the bodies of other people so, in an environment like a beach where being nude makes sense, don’t go. But your phobias will not be a source of shame to people who are happy to be human.

  31. says

    “keepitsimple” – how is nudity the same as defecation, urination, or sex acts?

    are you speaking from personal experience? meaning – is your incontinence so out of control that without layers of clothing, on a beach, your genitals leak profusely?

    sex acts? defecation? urination? hi, contamination – bodily fluids strewn in public.

    how is that comparable to nudity? i don’t tend to leak out of my behind when i take off my swimsuit but if you do then you have my sympathies, and i encourage you and anyone else like you to wear rubber pants at the beach.

    the rest of us shouldn’t be punished for your incontinence, however.

  32. McCoysMarketNYC says

    I haven’t had a summer share in Fire Island for years, but I really don’t recall that many nude sunbathers on the beach — in either the Pines or the Grove. I love going to Sandy Hook’s nude beach, not so much because I want to walk around naked, but because it gives me the opportunity to swim naked in the ocean — one of the greatest feelings in the world!
    PS: @Ratbastard: I’m pretty sure “a sight for sore eyes” is a positive thing, as in “Hey, hot naked guy, aren’t you a sight for sore eyes.”

  33. andrew says

    In fact, the last guy I almost-dated hated the way I looked so much that even when we had sex, I had to wear a paperbag over my head, a girdle around my waist, and all that with all the lights off!

    Some of us aren’t meant to be seen naked, ever. Even alone in the dark where we belong.

  34. David Hearne says

    I guess when the water is too cold to swim in you have to amuse yourself somehow. The obvious solution would be to have a designated nude beach and the rest of it be clothing required.

    Of course, I feel certain we can rely on certain queens in our midst to soak a swim suit in NaClO until it’s threadbare and transparent.

  35. andrew says

    No one should dare to disagree with Little Kiwi on this site or he will post silly/contradictory/evil things using your name. Or he will drag out his dozen or so aliases and try to shut you up. Fortunately those who follow this site know what a malevolent person he is. He claims to be a great liberal but unlike most real liberals he attempts to destroy all who disagree with him.

  36. KeepItSimple says

    Kiwi your response was just tired and dumb. So the only difference is bodily fluids??? you’re making my point. Nobody needs to be forced to look at your nasty naked body simply because you need to work out your “body issues”. That’s what the gym is for. Take your sour flabby behind to the gym and cover up.

  37. Dan says

    So gays will be treated the same as straight people and not given special treatment?? The horror!!! If Lindsay Lohan can’t stumble around the Hamptons topless, then no guy (good body or not) should be able to do the same bottomless.

  38. Jon says

    The comments from the anti-nudity proponents are so full of self-righteous condescension, I could just puke. It’s not “trashy” to be nude on a beach; it’s “trashy” to judge other people by the way they look, simple as that.
    Honestly, we are one f’ed up country. Nudity is evil, but apparently, there’s nothing wrong with showing the most disturbingly violent images on prime time TV (anyone seen The Following?). Boy do we have our priorities screwed up! This indignant attitude of trying to make everything illegal that one personally finds distasteful comes from the same place as anti-gay animus: “this grosses me out and instead of having the self awareness to question why that should be, I must declare it evil, offensive, and vile and have it outlawed!”

    If you have a problem with nudity, just go to one of the other 99% of beaches where nudity is not allowed and leave other people be. If it doesn’t hurt you, leave it alone!

  39. millerbeach says

    Oh, and Ernie, you nailed it. Gun crimes galore, but God forbid someone see boob or a nut. Plenty of money to fight nudity, not enough for social services. I sure hope a straight girl isn’t getting raped while the cops are checking to see if all the boys have their pants on…you all have MUCH bigger fish to fry than this one.

  40. Hippie Fire says

    Kind of coincidental that around the same time the FI nude beach ban is announced, a similar disuasive measure is implemented at long-time nudist & gay Hippie Hollow in Austin, where Parks Department officials in Travis County tried to make the area off-limits to boaters. This measure was overturned last night because people organized and opposed it. Will be interesting to see the depth of conviction of Fire Island beachgoers.

  41. DannyEastVillage says

    my experience is that the most fervently practicing nude sunbathers are the ones whose bodies you most *don’tI want to see. Kinda like the guys who make a point of walking naked through the locker room at the gym.

  42. Bart says

    Wow, this is really sad. I found it refreshing that there was this little place, that you had to take a boat to get to, where people felt comfortable enough to do that. Most of them only did it in between the big beaches where hardly anyone goes. What’s the point of this?

  43. ratbastard says

    @Derrick from Philly,

    You know what I’m sexually attracted to? Really? ‘Big Boys’? White,white,white,white? More like wrong, wrong,wrong,wrong,Derrick. I’m attracted to ALL kinds of guys, including pale white, but all kinds. Yes Derrick, that includes some ‘black’ guys.

    My previous post was basically a JOKE. I don’t care if people sunbath nude. However my comments regarding fat dudes wearing speedos stands.

  44. ratbastard says




    Agreed. And the guy is indeed probably a pedo in addition to an attention whore. It is sad and pathetic.


    No problem. Stay where you are. I’m sure, like the EU, it’s not a nanny state and far better than Amerika…*sarcasm off*

    @Ernie,Kevin VT, etc.,

    There is ZERO correlation between ‘gun control’, the 2nd amendment to the U.S. Constitution, puritanism, and nude sunbathing in public areas. What you’re engaging in is typical knee-jerk ‘Amerika is Dub’ ‘progressive’ behavior. And don’t use Europe please as an example to counter ‘puritan’ attitudes…many places in the EU especially southern Europe, locals get p*ssed off with tourists [usually from northern Europe] walking around naked, half naked, etc., and have passed local ordinances banning the practice. This behavior occurs in places like Germany, Sweden, etc., basically because the culture is to not question things, and to avoid conflict and keep to yourself. It has nothing to do with most people wanting to see or agreeing with fat, middle aged guys wandering around parks and beaches in speedos and nude, or even having topless women in public, because most people even in Europe don’t think it’s desirable behavior in public.

    And forget the rest of the world outside of western Europe, except some 3rd world tourist areas where the people are so desperate for tourist and money they’ll let you do anything, including prostituting young children.

  45. says

    again – all those supporting this ban: you’ve never even been to Fire ISland, and you never will. is that why you support the ban?

    sounds like jealousy to me :)

    “Oh! those gays that go have fun on that magical island with the deer and the mists and the history…and the meatrack…and the..oh GOD how i just wish your vacations were slightly ruined! then i can feel better about my own life!”

    shuffle ball-change, betches.

  46. Derrick from Philly says

    “More like wrong, wrong,wrong,wrong,Derrick. I’m attracted to ALL kinds of guys, including pale white, but all kinds.”

    That’s very reassuring, Ratbastard. I’m happy for you. Maybe if Sean (Miss KKK Korea 2008) and his “pasty” white boyfriend ever get to Boston y’all can have a threesome.

  47. says

    Come to Washington State, where nudity is legal as long as it’s not “obscene”.

    Nudity is simply normal and natural. If you don’t like a certain person’s body, get over it and look at something else.

  48. ratbastard says

    @David R,

    Nudity is actually legal in many places in the U.S., as is things like women going topless.

    Never the less, it is IMHO it’s typical of generally attention whores and yes even sexual deviants. I personally don’t think it’s ‘healthy’ for grown men for example to be parading around naked or ridiculously and inappropriately dressed [like wearing speedos on a pubic street, etc.] especially around children. I would definitely question any guy of any age who decided to wander around nude in a public park or beach around a lot of children. But I think even young guys walking around with their pants ‘sagging’ and falling down is rude and basically childish behavior.

  49. ratbastard says


    I love Asian dudes. I have a particular fetish [if you want to call it that] for Asian guys with facial hair.

    And one of my first guy dates was with a Korean-American dude from Queens.

  50. MichaelJ says

    I can’t believe the level of ignorance and unexamined prejudice being expressed by so many who are responding to this thread. I don’t know where to begin.

    We have people asserting that nudists are perverted extroverts and exhibitionists, more likely to be pedophiles, etc. This is very close to what right-wingers often say about gay people — they are exhibitionists who want to shove their perversions in the face of others, violating the rights of those who don’t want to be exposed to homosexuality, they are likely pedophiles or seeking to turn others gay, etc. There is no basis for most everything said by people who are aggressively homophobic, and there is no basis for what so many here have asserted about the character of people who like to go nude on the beach or elsewhere.

    Then we have all the comments containing the tired cliche that the people who go naked are generally the ones you don’t want to see naked. Whether or not this is true — and it is probably is true for those of you who want to see only young, fit bodies — is totally beside the point, as is the counter-point that people have different preferences in terms of looks. The point of being at a nude beach is to enjoy being naked for yourself, not for others. Clothed or not, gym-toned or not, with a big pubic bush or not, people have every right to look the way they want to look. Except for the dictates of a workplace of some other specific context, they have no responsibility to make sure that others, the public in general, are pleased with the way they look and no one has any business dictating to others how they look on the street. For a designated nude beach, which no one is force to go to, again no one has a responsibility to have a body that is pleasing to others. If I really don’t want to look at someone on the street or the beach, I look away. People whose tender sensibilities get so easily damaged should try it some time, rather than blame the person for how they look.

    Then there is the issue of children seeing others naked. So what? Families with children at a nude beach have already given consent for their children to see naked people. And they probably (heaven forbid) even want their children to feel comfortable with their bodies and being around others. And my guess would be that they like many of us believe we should far more upset about the level of normalized violence we (in the US) permit our children to be exposed to, and not upset at all about their exposure to nude people.

  51. jamal49 says

    Ever been to Fire Island? It’s quite isolated. Banning nude sunbathing is a bit much. There is nothing wrong with some healthy nudity. If anyone has a problem about how another’s body looks, that is the looker’s problem.

  52. ratbastard says

    I personally don’t care about nudity on Fire Island, and some of what I previously posted was for comic effect. That said, I don’t want to see naked dudes wandering around my neighborhood, taking off their clothes in front of especially little kids, being basically D-bags. And yeah, I think most guys who do sh*t like this are mentally ill, drunk/high, sexual deviants, pervs, a combination of all the above.

    Children and adults can view fictionalized and real violence all over the world. If you think it’s bad in America, check out Japan sometime. And let’s not forget where the worse violence, bloodshed on a scale the Earth the world has ever seen didn’t occur in ‘cowboy’ Amerika, it occurred in ‘civilized’ and ‘sophisticated’ Europe.

  53. MichaelJ says

    Not that this makes the banning of nudity at Lighthouse Beach (or at any of the other few places where it is legal to be naked in public) less reprehensible, but I was happy to read elsewhere that the ban applies only to what was termed federal land on Fire Island, not the land under the jurisdiction of specific municipalities, such as Cherry Grove and Fire Island. This fits with what is described in the Newsday article above. So those of us who enjoy being nakes on that part of Fire Island can still go there. And I’m sure there still will be plenty of buff (if not in the buff) young men in front of the Pines for those who do not approve of most whom they’ve seen at your average beach, naked or otherwise.

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