The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

Photos: 2015 Critical Mass Underwear Bike Ride (NSFW)

By Rachel Cromidas in News on Aug 3, 2015 2:45PM

If riding a bike with the wind in your hair on a summer evening is the epitome of freedom, then riding a bike free of virtually all clothing must take that sense of liberation to another level.

That's part of the point of the annual Critical Mass Underwear Bike Ride, a merging of the massive, monthly group cycling ride Critical Mass and a week-long celebration of people running around the city in underwear and pasties.

Organizers said the ride, held last Friday, is meant to "advocate positive body image and gender equality," by having women lead the ride and asking participants to ride their bikes (or roller skate alongside) in their underwear. The ride also aims to raise awareness about the unequal city laws that allow men to go topless in the streets but require women to keep their nipples covered. Topless men who participated in the ride were asked to wear tape over their nipples in solidarity.

"All bodies are celebrated," organizers emphasized in the Facebook event.

We sent a photographer to check out the Friday evening festivities and ride along with the July Critical Mass.