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World Naked Bike Ride Returns To Chicago Saturday

By Rachel Cromidas in News on Jun 12, 2015 3:00PM

Don't be surprised if you see a cohort of nude cyclists breeze by on the streets of Chicago Saturday evening. It just means the annual World Naked Bike Ride is back.

Now in its 12th year, the World Naked Bike Ride is a semi-organized gathering of scores of cyclists who take over the streets, similar to the monthly Critical Mass ride, to protest the reliance on petroleum-powered vehicles.

As in past years, the Chicago Police Department will not be ticketing riders for nudity, according to a department spokeswoman. Several bike cops will follow the cyclists along their route, which has not been published yet, for the purpose of maintaining safety for the cyclists and other road users. They will write tickets or make arrests for other illegal activity.

To comply with the law, organizers encourage participants to wear clothing to the event and to refrain from drinking or using drugs throughout the event. And you by no means have to be completely naked to join in, although some riders will be while others make strategic use of swimwear and body paint.

World Naked Bike Ride events take place in various cities around the world, and Chicago's meets this Saturday somewhere in the West Loop. The exact location and the route will not be announced widely until the day of, according to organizers.

If you're a fan of tamer cycling events, next week is your lucky week. Saturday's festivities are sandwiched between a weeklong series of cycling events organized by City Hall and the Active Transportation Alliance. Beginning Friday June 12 and running through Friday June 19 the city and many local bike shops and restaurants will be hosting special events and offering promotions or discounts to cyclists who spend the week bike-commuting. Chicago's Bike Week culminates Friday morning with a Bike to Work Rally at Daley Plaza from 7 to 9 a.m.