Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Right To Bare Butts

Boulder's Naked Halloween Streak May Be Coming to an End (sub req):

BOULDER, Colo. -- This city has always taken pride in its liberal-to-the-point-of-loony reputation. But this Halloween, one of its wackiest traditions is under siege: the Naked Pumpkin Run.

The event is exactly what its name implies. Scores of men and women pour into downtown streets for a late-night jog, wearing not a stitch between the jack-o'-lanterns on their heads and the sneakers on their feet.

For nearly a decade, naked pumpkin runners did their thing unmolested, stampeding through the frigid dark past crowds of admirers who hooted, hollered and tossed candy. But last year the run attracted more than 150 participants, and Police Chief Mark Beckner fears things are getting out of hand. "It's a free-for-all," he says.

So he intends to stop it.

He will station more than 40 officers on the traditional four-block route tonight, with two SWAT teams patrolling nearby. All have orders to arrest gourd-topped streakers as sex offenders.

Runners and their fans are outraged. This is not the free-spirited Boulder they know and love. "It kind of reminds me of what's happening in Tehran," says Andy Schmidt, a lawyer. "They're pre-emptively outlawing a gathering."


Yeah Andy, just like Tehran.

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