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Feds Strip Nude Bathing From Fire Island; Are You Bummed?

Officials point to reports of public lewdness and diminished dunes, ending Suffolk's only nude beach.

Federal park officials sent a message to nude sunbathers: Put your clothes back on.

That is, in Suffolk at least.

Fire Island National Seashore officials said they will begin enforcing laws that prohibit nude bathing on Fire Island, after many reports of sex and other incidents of public lewdness on the beaches, Newsday reports.

Officials also said Hurricane Sandy had damaged many sand dunes that had provided a buffer so onlookers couldn't peep on bathers from afar.

"We've been struggling to make it work because Fire Island has a history of that type of use and people have been coming there for years," Fire Island chief ranger Lena Koschmann told Newsday. "The more we talked about it and researched it, the more we realized that that use wasn't compatible with an area like Lighthouse Beach."

Fire Island had been the only beach in Suffolk to allow nude bathing.

Read the story here (subscription required).

Are you upset or pleased about the decision? Let us know in the comments.

Vicki February 28, 2013 at 01:01 PM
I am glad if is being shut down in that area but have no problem with a more remote part of fire island allowing nude bathing. I have always felt that it was too close to the public family beaches. Taking a walk to Kismet or to the lighthouse on the sand was never a comfortable occasion , especially if you were with your kids or grandchildren. Let there be an area that is a more isolated remote area on fire island where you would have to ferry over to if one wanted to disrobe on the beach.
Jim February 28, 2013 at 03:51 PM
It's way past time the feds actually enforce the rules & laws already on the books. The practice has limited the ability of families to access the boardwalk to the lighthouse.
Notanlines Guy February 28, 2013 at 09:10 PM
Nudists are members of society & have rights like everyone else and this area of the beach has been nudist friendly for decades. Therefore they park service needs to find a way to give nudists families an area of the beach that is just as accessible and doesn't require long hikes or other unfair measures. It seems to me they could put up a section of fence to divide the 2 areas to make it accessible to all, or some other similar measure. True nudists are very kind, caring people and often take better care of beaches than the general public, so that shouldn't be an issue. Our American society is so ashamed of our god given bodies that it has created shame an embarrassment for children to be seen naked by anyone, even family, doctors or in a gym locker room shower. This often extends to being ashamed of being seen naked by their spouses, which is sad. Children of nudist families don't have that same level of shame because they learn to respect and love their bodies, and to take care of them.
Beach Bummed March 01, 2013 at 02:59 AM
The claim that the Rangers were trying to make this work isn't true. At Sailors Haven there was a very isolated stretch of beach that allowed nudity. 2 years ago they put up signs saying that nudity was now prohibited for no reason. So this move is just another step to push that agenda. The $5,000 fine and 6 months in jail is outrageously excessive and additional evidence of the real obscenity going on here. I would go out to lighthouse beach and never saw much lewd behavior and if there was that going on the police should just arrest the violators. The nude beach there was accepted for many years and there was nothing wrong with it.
Eddy March 01, 2013 at 08:20 PM
It should never have been allowed to go on. I actually tried it once or twice and was very uncomfortable having people walk by and stating but the deal beaker for me was the gay sex going on in plain sight. Thus is not a true nudist area but an excuse for public deviant behavior. You can teach UR kids about loving themselves without this kind of crap going on. The laws prohibiting nudity have been on books for decades and the authorities gave been allowing it to go on in certain out of the way areas where it went mostly unnoticed . however the landscape has changed so drastically now that you would literally have kids going to visit the lighthouse on field trips passing way to close the the area with nothing to block the view. So it's time for a change like it or not.
Al Mahany March 03, 2013 at 12:30 PM
Why should we be treated like some kind of disease and shunted off to some remote area while the clothed beach users get convenient access? We pay taxes too. They get their beach and we get ours. What is wrong with that?
Al Mahany March 03, 2013 at 12:31 PM
The beach is not visible from the boardwalk at all
Al Mahany March 03, 2013 at 12:36 PM
First of all true nudists do not tolerate public sex any more than you do. It is actually very rare, but if we see it, we ask them to stop and then call the Rangers if they refuse. I believe you that you were uncomfortable using our beach, and that is fine. You have many fine clothed beaches to choose from and be comfortable.We had one beach to be comfortable at, and it was taken away from us for no reason.

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