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Nude Swimming in Western New York – Really?

A group of nude young people smile at the viewer while skinny dipping in the ocean

It was a few years ago during a cruise on a Norwegian Cruise Lines ship when in my travels around the ship I noticed there was a “Freestyle” deck.  The ship had a “Family” deck, “Party” deck, “Quiet” deck and some others, but I had no idea what the “Freestyle” deck was. So I decided to investigate. You had to climb a set of stairs and go through a frosted glass door to get there and immediately my question was answered.  I guess “Freestyle” is another way of describing “clothing-optional”. I quietly turned around and went back down the steps.

Even in an area known for its brutal winters I’m sure there must be some clothing-optional beaches or swimming holes. I can’t say that I know of even one, or at least any that are legal. As far as I know even on the hottest summer day the only place to legally strip down is in the privacy of your own home or in one of the state’s few nudist resorts.

Many of them are in the Catskills and Adirondacks….out of the way places where not too many people would even be offended.  But closer to our area there’s one near Corning, one in the Finger Lakes and probably the closest to Buffalo is one in Sherman, NY, in Chautauqua County.

Rochester has a Naturist Club whose members get together weekly for nude swimming and here in this area the Niagara Naturists meet each month at an area restaurant, while clothed, to answer questions and welcome anyone who wishes to become a member.  There’s no charge to attend the meeting other than the cost of the food you order.

So there it is; if even the skimpiest of bathing suit is just is too uncomfortable on a steamy hot day there is an alternative.  I suppose you could call it a lifestyle, but I think I’d be just too embarrassed to give it a try.  It’s got to be that conservative upbringing.



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