Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
BCM
User Panel

Site Notices
Posted: 8/23/2006 6:45:08 PM EDT
'We're a bit different'
Vermont town allows people to disrobe - if they mind their own business

The Boston Globe
Aug. 23, 2006 04:04 PM


BRATTLEBORO, Vt. - Here on the banks of the Connecticut River, in the busiest parking area of a downtown peppered with bookstores and coffee shops, more is meeting the eye than some people want.

A politely rebellious collection of teenagers passing time in the Harmony Parking Lot this summer has taken to disrobing. Seemingly on a whim, they shed clothes and soak up the sun, nude.

What began as a lark, or an ode to youthful exuberance, has now turned into a municipal quandary because public nudity is permissible in Brattleboro.  
 



In the words of Town Manager Jerry Remillard, if you're naked in public, and you're minding your business, you're legal.

"We're quite a bit different than a lot of places," Remillard said.

Spurred by complaints, the town's Select Board will consider changing that, although no changes are expected soon. In the meantime, some pedestrians avert their eyes. Some youths cheer on their naked friends, and a few adults are so offended that they become nearly hysterical.

If the two-dozen or so youths, 16 to 19 years old, are seeking to make a social statement, the manifesto needs some work.

"We just thought it'd be a little fun," said Charles Corry, 19, who said he stripped to nature's own Friday and hung out for about 45 minutes with five like-minded friends as shoppers, diners, and walkers made their bemused way through the lot. "I don't see it as a serious statement."

Serious or not, the teenagers have made nudity something that can show its pale or sun-burned self with no warning. Rachel Brooks, who works at Everyone's Books, sees some of the action on the sidewalk outside the shop's rear door.

"Personally, if I wanted to be naked, I wouldn't sit around in a dirty parking lot," said Brooks, 22. "I wouldn't want to get cigarette butts on my butt."

The nudity began in earnest this year, Brooks said, when one young woman decided she wanted to bare her chest in public, just like her male friends.

Since then, the no-clothes fashion has gained popularity and expanded to include group bike rides, skateboarding, hula-hoop contests, and a grass-roots music event that the group dubbed the Brat Fest.

One girl even sat partially nude on a newspaper vending box in the middle of downtown.

"I think most of Vermont wants Vermont to be nude," said Hannah Phillips, 15, who added that she has not disrobed. "People have a basic human right to be naked if they want to."

Nearby, older teenagers sat on the sidewalk, fully-clothed, their backs propped against a brick wall, munching on a pizza they found in its box. A car belonging to one of the group was parked nearby, a skull-and-crossbones on its hood and the words, "Chaos Infiltration Squad," on a side door. On the opposite side of the lot, the Back Side Cafe looked down on the scene.

Although members of the group said they don't intend to offend anyone, one woman has filed a complaint with the town's Select Board.

But the wheels of legislation grind methodically here, and the board must hold two public meetings followed by a waiting period of nearly a month before a ban on public nudity can be implemented and enforced.

Vermont does not forbid public nudity, like Massachusetts does, but even some liberal communities in the state have banned it. Remillard said that outsiders shouldn't begin to think of Brattleboro as a haven for the behavior. It's just that Brattleboro never had cause to ban nudity before.

"I would suspect that if it were OK, you'd see it in Boston," he said.

Andrew Wdowiak, who works at Everyone's Books, said that he's not put off by the nudity, but that the act has become a little tired. "I think it was more for the shock value," he said. "They weren't flagrant about it."

But last week, when about a half-dozen naked teenagers congregated outside the store, "it was like they were baking a cake, and they really frosted it. All the men were naked, and the women were topless," Wdowiak said. "I needed about three drinks to erase that vision."

One patron of the bookstore let loose with hysterics of Academy Award proportions, he added.

If the town passes an ordinance this year, cool weather will have begun to settle in this slice of the North Country.

But Remillard, for one, doesn't think the bracing air will accomplish what Brattleboro's laws have been so far unable to do.

"That isn't necessarily going to bother this group of people," he said of the cold.
Link Posted: 8/23/2006 6:47:19 PM EDT
[#1]
Teenagers are stupid.
Link Posted: 8/23/2006 6:48:42 PM EDT
[#2]
That place needs lots of old fat guys with cameras.  
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 5:48:55 AM EDT
[#3]
Meh...  Attention whores.  Ignore it and it will go away as fast as it started.
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 5:52:13 AM EDT
[#4]
Eh, in the whole state of NY women are now allowed to be topless in most cases. You don't see it carried out very often, and the ones who disrobe tend to be the ones who should keep themselves covered up to spare the rest of the sight of their bodies.
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 5:53:44 AM EDT
[#5]

Quoted:
Nakes people allowed in public Vermont town    


Is that anything like Nakes on an MFing plane?
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 5:55:42 AM EDT
[#6]
I feel compelled to mention that Brattleboro is far, FAR away from Burlington.

Thank god.
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 5:57:09 AM EDT
[#7]

Quoted:

Quoted:
Nakes people allowed in public Vermont town    


Is that anything like Nakes on an MFing plane?


Link Posted: 8/24/2006 5:57:58 AM EDT
[#8]

Quoted:

Quoted:
Nakes people allowed in public Vermont town    


Is that anything like Nakes on an MFing plane?




That being said I hear Vermont is a great place to visit this time of year

*off searching for camera*
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 5:58:30 AM EDT
[#9]
"Nakes"?

Is that like - "snakes"?
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 6:04:04 AM EDT
[#10]
Well, if the kids want to run around naked, but the state should enact an equal time law.  For each day (or part thereof) spent naked in the summer, the person must spend an equal number of days (or part thereof) naked in the winter.  
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 6:04:47 AM EDT
[#11]

Since then, the no-clothes fashion has gained popularity and expanded to include group bike rides, skateboarding, hula-hoop contests, and a grass-roots music event that the group dubbed the Brat Fest.


They're showing off, nothing more. If they were serious about just wanting to go around naked because of personal reasons, they wouldn't be holding events to flaunt it. They'd just go about it, otherwise business as usual.

Edited: Like some of those nude beaches in Europe. People there are naked, but they're naked to swim and sunbathe and whatnot, all the regular beach activities. Not just to show off the fact that they're naked.
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 6:09:37 AM EDT
[#12]
I just can't imagine living somewhere where people are walking around nekkid. Nudist colonies are one thing, but the unclothed walking around among the clothed seems a bit ... different.

Not to mention that I'm pretty sure I wouldn't want to see 90% of the people I come across on a daily basis nekkid.

Link Posted: 8/24/2006 6:14:18 AM EDT
[#13]


"We just thought it'd be a little fun to talk these girls out of their pants." said Charles Corry, 19
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 6:44:56 AM EDT
[#14]
Young, nubile ladies running around neeked?

What's the problem?  
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 6:46:21 AM EDT
[#15]


"I think most of Vermont wants Vermont to be nude," said Hannah Phillips, 15, who added that she has not disrobed.
"People have a basic human right to be naked if they want to."



WTF?  Nudity is in the bill of rights?
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 6:50:41 AM EDT
[#16]

Quoted:

But last week, when about a half-dozen naked teenagers congregated outside the store, "it was like they were baking a cake, and they really frosted it. All the men were naked, and the women were topless," Wdowiak said. "I needed about three drinks to erase that vision."



That just cracked me up.


Link Posted: 8/24/2006 6:54:37 AM EDT
[#17]

Quoted:


"I think most of Vermont wants Vermont to be nude," said Hannah Phillips, 15, who added that she has not disrobed.
"People have a basic human right to be naked if they want to."



WTF?  Nudity is in the bill of rights?


The bill of rights does not list out every human right.  I'm not saying nudity is a human right, just pointing that out.
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 10:01:21 AM EDT
[#18]
Remember, violence is OK, nudity is not.

This is the US.

Link Posted: 8/24/2006 11:25:58 AM EDT
[#19]
if god wanted us nude, we would be born that way!.............

DOH!

Link Posted: 8/24/2006 11:37:45 AM EDT
[#20]
Brattleboro VT is a different place that is for sure. My sister has lived there for years this just adds one more thing that I can tease her about.

The nice thing about that state is the carry laws. :)
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 11:43:41 AM EDT
[#21]

Quoted:
Brattleboro VT is a different place that is for sure. My sister has lived there for years this just adds one more thing that I can tease her about.

The nice thing about that state is the carry laws. :)


It'd defiantely have to be open carry for those folks.  I'd hate to think about where they'd stash their BUG!
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 11:46:20 AM EDT
[#22]
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 11:47:38 AM EDT
[#23]

Quoted:

Nakes people allowed in public Vermont town



Sure, but do they allow Nakes On A Plane!?
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 11:48:59 AM EDT
[#24]
Personally, I don't see a problem with nudity, so long as it isn't sexual in nature or done in an inapproriate place.

If women want to go topless in the park, go right ahead. If everybody wants to be nude at the beach, go for it.

Let's just lay down some ground rules first, like, say, clothes, or at least pants, must be worn on public transportation. I don't know about you, but I don't want to sit where Bubba McLardboy's bare ass just occupied. Ditto for anyplace that serves food.



Link Posted: 8/24/2006 11:49:00 AM EDT
[#25]
So as soon as you download all those pictures of topless 15 year old girls from your camera do the Brattleboro police show up, confiscate your computer, and arrest you for kiddy porn?
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 11:50:57 AM EDT
[#26]
It's odd, for sure.

Really though - if you see somebody naked, what harm is there really? This is a serious question.
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 11:57:31 AM EDT
[#27]
I like being naked.
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 12:06:11 PM EDT
[#28]
That's where I spent the first 22 years of my life.  Unfortunately, as most of you can imagine, the ones taking their clothes off are NOT the ones you want to see naked.

Link Posted: 8/24/2006 12:06:32 PM EDT
[#29]

Quoted:
I feel compelled to mention that Brattleboro is far, FAR away from Burlington.

Thank god.



Yeah, because naked teenage girls are so much worse that Mayor Kiss and his thoughts on gun control and illegals.
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 12:08:46 PM EDT
[#30]

Quoted:
if god wanted us nude, we would be born that way!.............

DOH!




LOL
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 12:09:07 PM EDT
[#31]
And there's way more hippies in Burlington...
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 1:27:36 PM EDT
[#32]

Quoted:

Quoted:


"I think most of Vermont wants Vermont to be nude," said Hannah Phillips, 15, who added that she has not disrobed.
"People have a basic human right to be naked if they want to."



WTF?  Nudity is in the bill of rights?


The bill of rights does not list out every human right.  I'm not saying nudity is a human right, just pointing that out.


I believe the right to be nude is covered by the 9th ammendment.
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 3:40:48 PM EDT
[#33]
Hell, I'm naked right now.  
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 7:09:33 PM EDT
[#34]
If I lived there I would organize a bunch of old fat ugly people to lay out with them!! I can't believe they hadn't done that already!
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 7:47:28 PM EDT
[#35]
i love going nekkid.
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 7:50:42 PM EDT
[#36]
but if your naked how do you "CCW"?????
Link Posted: 8/24/2006 8:47:04 PM EDT
[#37]
You guys are forgetting what many of these hyppie girls look like...with all that Ben and Jerry's ice cream...fat chicks with buck wheat in a head lock...great.. I did see an absolutely stunning red-head in VT once...I would have sold my sole to that woman...but that's another story...
Link Posted: 8/25/2006 2:35:29 AM EDT
[#38]
I was in Brattleboro just a few weeks ago and did see any nake people anywhere.
Close Join Our Mail List to Stay Up To Date! Win a FREE Membership!

Sign up for the ARFCOM weekly newsletter and be entered to win a free ARFCOM membership. One new winner* is announced every week!

You will receive an email every Friday morning featuring the latest chatter from the hottest topics, breaking news surrounding legislation, as well as exclusive deals only available to ARFCOM email subscribers.


By signing up you agree to our User Agreement. *Must have a registered ARFCOM account to win.
Top Top