This year marked the 11th annual World Naked Bike Ride in Portland, Oregon—an event that drew in more than 8,000 riders. The ride is held in more than 20 countries as a means to promote cycling as well as positive body image.
With the slogan, “As Bare As You Dare,” a crowd formed in Normandale Park, either fully nude or in states of undress in preparation for the event. Despite the word “naked” included in its official title, the organization firmly states that participants should attend in whatever attire they feel comfortable in.
Residents were drawn into participating for a number of reasons. “This is a party, but it’s also a protest,” said Carl Larson, a ride spokesman, according to Reuters. “It is about oil dependence, cycling vulnerability, and body image.”
The main reason the event is categorized as a protest is because its size requires assistance from police in directing traffic. But few problems have occurred over the years. The WNBR hopes to inform more people about the pollution created by cars, at the same time showing how bikes offer simple transportation with little negative effects.
The WNBR website reads, “The groups are only connected by their determination to all be naked on their bikes on WNBR Day, riding in celebration, jubilation to deliver a vision of a cleaner, safer, body-positive world to the masses. We have many great reasons to be celebrating, with all the glory of naked two-wheel sanity. It’s time to join hundreds of naked compatriots in a free, non-sexual, fun bike ride.”