Bare Facts
Copyright 1998 Lake Edun Foundation, Inc.

Official Publication of the Lake Edun Foundation, Inc. August 1, 1998

Lake Edun; Box 1982; Topeka, KS 66601 Voice Mail: 785-478-BARN e-mail:

Return to Edun/6 Tops All

Although it was a little damp, Return to Edun/6 hit a record in spite of challenging weather. As is common for Return to Edun events, many were experiencing clothing-free for the first time. People came from Florida, Colorado, Iowa, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Wyo ming, Missouri, Illinois, and Ohio. All came together at Return to Edun and had a great time. While the mud will dry, and our bodies will become clean again, memories of a great weekend will linger long.

I suspect we will be hearing tales of the fun everyone had for many months. Each camping area seemed to develop its own personality and activities. The Volley- ball court got use from early until late as people team- ed up to use the new facility.

Confessing Sila, DDT, now known as the Woodley Brothers, and Nude Fusion were great! Although the other two bands developed last minute problems, these groups provided great quality and variety.

If you have an interest in assisting with Return to Edun/7, be sure to make it known. It is a major un dertaking involving many Eduners and others.

100 Tons

Its difficult to realize there are over 100 tons of sand in our volley ball court. But it sure is nice to play on and it received extensive use at Return to Edun/6. Crazy Eduners were up early and played until dark. Even the rain did not dampen the volleyball spirit. Thanks to all who helped spread the sand and com plete the court. The sand, net, and play is terrific!

Respect Our Neighbors

I visited recently with one of our of the few that will actually talk with us. She commented on how quiet we are (I talked with her before Return to Edun/6). She did mention, however, that she has seen Eduners in the parking lot without clothing.

It is important that we not impose our values on oth ers. While we believe our choice is correct and heal- thy, others do not agree. They have a right to cling to their mistaken notions. Therefore, it is very important that we not be naked anywhere outsiders can view us.

When in the parking lot, everyone must keep their mid-section covered and women must keep their breasts covered, also (we do have a double standard, don t we). Likewise, if you are on the east side of the dam when a car passes, turn around or squat so you are appropriately modest.

Until all of society is as enlightened as we, these sim ple steps will ease our relations with neighbors.

Hot August Nights Beach Party

Dancing on the beach. A tropical feast. Limbo con test. These are some of the activities planned by the social committee for August 22.

Be sure to mark your calendar so you do not miss this event. Our social committee keeps getting more creative with each event they plan. Who knows what surprises are in store for us on the 22nd. Come with a covered dish appropriate for a tropical feast. Put on your dancing feet. Let s enjoy the last half of our summer.

L.E.A.K. Forming

By Paul Noble We are trying to organize the Lake Edun Association of Kids (L.E.A.K.). All children of Eduners are eligible for membership.

We need your ideas for fund raisers and activities for kids at Lake Edun. If you have any questions or ideas, you may e-mail me at

Be On The Lookout ...

Your Board of Directors has decided to begin looking for a mid-sized tractor with some attachments. We are particularly interested in finding one with a front loader and a belly mower. Other attachments would also be beneficial. This might be something like a Kobota, a mid-sized John Deer or some other brand.

If you know where we can find something that will meet our needs at a reasonable price, please bring it to the attention of a member of the Board.


Aug 8; Dusk; Council Fire
August 15; 10-12; Board of Directors Meeting
August 15; 12-4; Work Day
August 15; Dusk; Council Fire
August 22; Beach party
August 22; Dusk; Council Fire
August 29; Dusk; Council Fire
Sept 5; Dusk; Council Fire
Sept 12; 10-12; Board of Directors Meeting
Sept 12; Fish Fry
Sept 12; 7:30; Sauna
Sept 12; Dusk; Council Fire
Sept 19; Dusk; Council Fire
Sept 26; Dusk; Council Fire
Oct 3; 12-4; Work Day
Oct 3; Kids Halloween Party & campout
Oct 3; Dusk (or later); Council Fire
Oct 30; Halloween Party & Annual Meeting

Choose Freedom at Lake Edun

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The Law Protects Skinny-Dippers

For centuries, common law wisely distinguished be tween nudity in inappropriate places (such as the market), and nudity at appropriate public places such as beaches, streams, and ponds. Such legal protec tion of skinny-dippers continues in most modern law. The US government and 46 states draw a clear dis tinction between mere nudity and lewd behavior. (Naturists do support the strict enforcement of laws against lewdness, whether the offender is dressed or undressed. Anyone who commits a felony while nude should be arrested for that felony--not some lesser nudity infraction.) In the 47th state, the New York Court of Appeals in 1992 struck down any difference between the sexes in dress codes--and no crime wave resulted.

Though the Declaration of Independence includes the pursuit of happiness among our three most inalien able rights, the Constitution is silent on the specific matter of nude recreation. That is because everyone swam naked back then. It never occurred to the draft ers of our Bill of Rights that something so basic and natural as skinny-dipping would ever need protection.

The United States Supreme Court has ruled that government has no vital interest in regulating nudity-- unless that nudity can be proven to cause harmful secondary events such as a rising crime rate or declining property values. But laws that lead to the closing of burlesque shows cannot logically be stretched to arrest innocent skinny-dippers, for the available evidence indicates that the opposite is true in this case: the presence of a clothing-optional beach can be associated with lowered crime rates. Consider the facts: Juvenile delinquency is practically unknown among Naturist families. Nations with a few clothing-optional beaches have lower teen pregnancy rates, and nations with many such beaches have significantly lower rates. Since Haulover Beach near Miami became clothing-optional, the crime rate has dropped from about 40 felonies a month to 5 or 10 misdemeanors a month--this despite the huge increase of people, and a rising crime rate in the surrounding area. People at nude beaches maintain high standards of conduct.

Anyone who enacts an anti-nudity law takes several risks: 1) political from people who believed the promises to reduce government intrusion in our lives; 2) economic if the law faces expensive court challenges, and 3) the risk of escalating the situation. Nude pro test is fully protected under the first amendment rights of free speech--and not just on the beach, but every where. (There are already plenty of laws in place concerning creating a public disturbance or lewdness to protect against naked people wandering down the streets.) Ill-conceived anti-nudity laws almost always get struck down in court, and their instigators discover they have instead contributed to broadening the legal protection of skinny-dippers.

County Tries To Shut Us Down ... Again

Predictably, in conjunction with our annual Return to Edun celebration, the neighbors and the county are trying to shut us down ... again. We went through this a couple of years ago. While nudity is not against the law, they seem to believe that because we sell mem berships to the Lake Edun Foundation, we are run ning a business. Since we are not zoned for business, we are out of compliance with county zoning regula tions.

On the surface, it would seem they have a solid case until one looks deeper. The prior land owner leased the property to a hunting club that sold member- ships and came to the property to shoot guns, fish and party. Except for the dress code, our use is really no different than the prior use. Farmers all across the state sell others the right to come on their property to hunt, fish, or have parties. The practice is common and, except for the dress code, is really no different than our usage.

When put in this context, it becomes clear that what the county and neighbors are really trying to do is close us down because they do not agree with our clothing-free lifestyle.

For the neighbors, it is a moral issue. One neighbor began quoting the Bible to me. When I pointed out the Pope did not have a problem with nudity, she easily dismissed that by saying she was not Catholic. The message was clear: Since she is not Catholic, nothing the Pope says or does has relevance and he clearly does not understand the Bible nearly as well as she. Wow! It s hard to have a meaningful discussion with someone like that.

From The Mail Bag

Dear Lake Edun:

I d like to pass along to all the Eduners my thanks for making my first visit so much fun. 4th of July week end at Lake Edun was my first experience at an or- ganized (where you have to pay to get in) naturist spot, and I intend to be back soon.

I may be able to come to Return to Edun after all, but may not be able to get there until Saturday morning. Would I have any chance of finding a camping and/or parking spot if I didn t get there until Saturday morn ing?

- Dave

Dear Lake Edun:

Thanks for the wonderful visit today. Everyone I met was helpful and welcoming and I look forward to coming back, hopefully as a fulltime member.

- Mike

Choose Freedom at Lake Edun

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The Naturist Society

Once again, The Naturists hit a jack pot. In their latest issue of Nude and Natural they had a great article by Bill Peckenpaugh summarizing studies on the effects of nudity on children.

Briefly, Peckenpaugh laments the general lack of credible academic studies in this area. The few that have been completed, though, reinforce what we already know. At the worst, exposing children at any age to adult nudity is benign and has no impact on the child s development; at the best, it has a clear and decisive positive impact on the child s self-esteem and ability to think at the highest moral levels.

Nude and Natural is published quarterly by The Naturist Society and is included free with membership. We recommend membership in The Naturist Society to any Eduner really interested in knowing what is happening in the larger clothing-free world.

The Naturists are still offering a FREE copy of their video, Experience The Freedom to anyone who joins for two years. If you are interested in membership in TNS, use the form included with this newsletter.

Should Children Come To Lake Edun?

Some of our detractors are concerned about the im pact exposure to adult nudity has on children. As a family-orientated organization, we, too, are very concerned about this. But, we are not interested in rush ing to an unsupportable conclusion (and thus set bad policy) based on fear, rumor or supposition.

Fortunately, a limited number of academic studies have been done in this area. The enclosed flier is an excellent summary of four of these studies. Use it to help educate those who are not as enlightened as we. If you need additional fliers, please contact the Lake Edun Foundation.

Random Thoughts & Reflections

Thanks, Allan, for the quality volleyball net and the two leather balls.

A videographer captured the essence of Return to Edun/6 in hours of raw video. We are in the process of editing this down to a 30-60 minute presentation. Until the video is complete, we will continue to offer it to Eduners for only $20.00.

It is virtually impossible to name all the people who worked hard to make Return to Edun/6 a success. Some aided in small ways, some were a major supporter. The combined efforts of so many made a BIG difference! Thanks to all.

I recently made a presentation before the Rotary Club about the Lake Edun Foundation and clothing-free recreation. It was a lively presentation and seemed to be very well received. If you know of any group that would like to hear about the healthful benefits of a clothing-free life-style, contact the Lake Edun Foundation.

Read and Understand

The Lake Edun Foundation strives to provide a healthy, pleasant, family oriented, clothing-free experi ence for all its members. At the same time, we wish to keep expenses low so our membership rates are as low as possible. Therefore, it is important that each member help us reach our family-oriented goal.

Specifically, any violation of any Federal, State or County law or ordinance including any overt sexual acts or use of any illegal drugs will not be tolerated at Lake Edun or any Lake Edun Foundation activities.

To aid our members and insure all incidents are han dled in a consistent and fair manner, the Board of Directors has established the following procedure to use should they become aware of any members or guests whose actions are not consistent with our policy:

1) If you become aware of any member, visitor or guest whose actions are not consistent with our policy, approach the individual or individuals and ask them to either stop or leave.

2) Either report the incident to a member of the Board who will make a written report or fully de scribe the incident in a letter and send it to Box 1982; Topeka, KS 66601. Any report, whether verbal or written, must be complete and specific including date, time, location, and names of indi viduals involved. Your report may be signed or it may be anonymous. Because anonymous reports are more difficult to follow up on and more easily abused, we prefer you sign any report.

3) The President of the Board will assign a board member to interview all individuals involved in the alleged incident and make a report with a recom mendation to the Board.

4) The Board of Directors will act on the recommen dation at its next scheduled meeting. Notice of its decision will be sent to all parties.

5) Any member may appeal the decision of the Board within 30 days of the date the decision is mailed. Notice of appeal must be sent to our Post Office box. Appeals will be to all members of the Lake Edun Foundation at either our regular meet ing or a special meeting. During an appeal, both sides will be given an opportunity to present their information, and they may question others. Mem bers may choose to affirm the action of the Board of Directors or they may, on motion made and seconded, select an alternate action. Members will cast a secret ballot. The decision of the vote of the membership will be final.

"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world. The unreasonable man persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unrea sonable man."

- George Bernard Shaw

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The Beat Goes On

By Dave Bitters

Through e-mail traffic I learned of an advice column dealing with children and familial nudity, that appeared in the July 15 Washington Post.

Some say that perception is reality. Indeed the gurus of our culture can alter our perception of reality through lies and half-truths, particularly the ones that are left unchallenged. With this in mind, I felt it my civic duty to take the author of this column to task. First I reprint some excerpts from the column:

A Coverup That Counts
By Marguerite Kelly
Special to The Washington Post
Wednesday, July 15, 1998; Page D04

Q: There was no outright "sexual abuse" in my home when I was growing up, but there was inappropriate behavior with sexual overtones, and it affects me yet.

My mother and stepfather walked around in the nude, spoke openly of their sexual activity in front of us three children and often made loud noises when they had sex. My stepfather frequently made lewd comments to me, starting when I was about 9, and my mother -- an alcoholic -- subjected two of us children to physical abuse and deep psychospiritual neglect. ... I m still concerned about nudity around children. It seems alright for daughters to see their mothers change clothes or bathe and for sons to see their fathers in the nude, but deep down, I don t know how much nudity is appropriate when raising healthy children.

A: Flagrant household nudity is upsetting to growing children and no one knows that better than you.

Your stepfather definitely was guilty of sexual abuse: An adult who exposes himself to a child, makes lewd comments to her, talks to her about his sexual activity and lets her hear him have sex with her mother is exploiting and humiliating the child for his own pleasure the classic definition of sexual abuse.

According to therapists with the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, parents should start covering up when their first child is 3 because nudity can upset or overstimulate children after that. By age 7, children don t want to see their parents naked, and they don t want anyone to see them naked either, for they are exquisitely aware of their bodies and their privacy now. These children not only pull away from nudity, they seldom talk about sex and they stick with their own gender when they play. ...

It may seem old-fashioned to cover up, but children like bound aries, especially sexual ones. Your memories are undoubtedly affecting your concern about nudity in the future and you probably need to work through this and other issues a little more before you have children.

Following is my response to this piece:
Ms. Kelly -

Three weeks ago I attended a week-long conference in Monterey, California. I chose to stay at a lovely resort in the Santa Cruz mountains. This necessitated a one-hour commute to the conference, but it was worth the drive.

I arrived in San Jose about 2:30 p.m. local time, and reached the resort a half hour or so later. After I checked into my room I went to the swimming pool area, which crowded with families, couples, singles, and lots of kids -- happy kids, playing, splashing, doing what happy kids do.

Next to the pool is a small, neatly landscaped grassy area where people congregate to have picnics, socialize, etc. Here too you ll find people of all ages -- infants, pre-teens, teens, young couples, older folks, etc.

What I've described sounds a lot like the scene you d find at any suburban country club, doesn t it?

In fact, it was. But this place differs from most country clubs in one detail: Bathing suits are forbidden in the pools and hot tubs. In fact, on a warm summer afternoon (as this was), clothes are difficult to find anywhere on the grounds.

You see, this was the Lupin Naturist Club, one of the top nudist resorts in the country.

I had a six-month sabbatical in California in 1990, and spent many happy Saturdays at Lupin during this time. One incident in particular sticks in my mind. One morning I was soaking in the upper-area hot tub. Near me sat a young girl, aged about eight or nine -- a first-timer. It was abundantly clear that she was having the time of her life. In fact, she exclaimed gleefully, "I thought I'd be embarrassed, but I'm havin FUN!"

In April, 1945 the California General Assembly debated outlawing nudist parks. But the famous (or infamous) Dills Bill failed in committee, in considerable part due to the testimony of Herbert Webb, a member of Olympic Fields (now McConville, after one of the founders) near Lake Elsinore.

Webb brought his children, who were raised as nudists, attending Olympic Fields from infancy. The committee was most favorably impressed with the manners and deportment of these children, and concluded that nudists weren't the lewd kooks the press made them out to be.

There are two kinds of psychologists: clinical and experimental (behavioral). The methodologies these groups use are poles apart. Experimental psychologists acknowledge that there's very little we understand about how the brain actually works -- what factors are "hard-wired" into us, for instance, and what factors are culturally induced. So they limit the conclusions of their research to those things that can be demonstrated rigorously using accepted statistical methods applied with care. They understand the difference between hypothesis and conclusion -- between conjecture and fact.

Page 5

Clinical psychologists use a different approach. They tend to look at unusual cases, and generalize from these. They are responsible for the bizarre (and unsupportable) view that adult nudity is harmful to children, for instance, just as some of them were responsible for much of the mischief surrounding the so-called "false memory syndrome." In your article in today's Washington Post you fell into the trap of accepting uncritically the unsupported pronouncement of some clinical psychologists that adult nudity is harmful to children, based on the kind of reasoning from the particular to the general I've just described.

This claim is ipso facto an absurdity -- unless you believe that humankind has ALWAYS existed in a clothed state. I doubt that you'd find many serious anthropologists who would second such a view, though. The best evidence we have is that Homo Sapiens has been around for at least two million years. On the other hand, the best evidence we have of any artifacts of clothing for any human population extends back at most 40,000 years. We have to conclude that our ancient ancestors would have found laughable the claim that adult nudity is harmful to children.

Indeed, even as late as January, 1946, we have a documented eyewitness account (published in the National Geographic) of an aboriginal culture that habitually lived entirely without clothes. This account contained a remark about how happy and self-assured the children were.

If you were to do your homework more carefully, you'd discover that SOME adult nudity can be associated with SOME sexual abuse in SOME contexts. The operational word here is SOME. You see, the apparent epidemic of sexual abuse is peculiar to OUR culture, and OUR culture arguably is quite schizophrenic about sex.

Paul Okami carefully researched the issue of adult nudity and children in an article published in the Journal of Sex Research, titled Childhood Exposure to Parental Nudity, Parent-Child Co-Sleeping, and "Primal Scenes": A Review of Clinical Opinion and Empirical Evidence. This article involved a massive literature search, in an effort to sort out fact from fiction. He showed that any connection between nudity (or the other items in the article's title) and harm to children is highly culturally dependent. He also noted that, on a statistically significant basis, the groups in which child sexual abuse is most prevalent are religious conservatives and the lower socio-economic stratum. Children in the former group are at elevated risk because of the religious doctrine factor. Children in the latter group are at elevated risk because of the loose culture and lifestyle that sometimes is found among lower class whites.
Though I don't know who your writer was, it sounds as if she grew up in a household of the latter category. Would it be fair to say that the nudity was the real issue in this case, or was this perhaps a symptom of something else? It seems to me that this case isn't as transparent as the casual reader might think.

May I suggest, before you publish any more responses like the one in today's paper, that you do your homework. For starters you might have a look at the book Nudist Society by Hartman, Fithian and Johnson, and/or at Dennis Craig Smith's remarkable book Growing Up Without Shame. I'd also suggest that you look at the academic papers of Marilyn Storey.

We who support the nudist/Naturist movement can match anecdote for anecdote any clinical psychologist who claims that adult nudity around children is a bad idea. The truth is that this issue is highly dependent on cultural context and background, and certainly is not as black-and-white as your article made it seem. Indeed, some of us think that moving the culture toward greater acceptance of nudity as innocuous and normal would be an excellent way to help this country get beyond its national sexual adolescence and end the sexual violence and abuse most of us agree is undesirable.

Your readers deserve better than the piece you published today. It is my hope that you will afford yourself the opportunity to do your homework, and give it to them in the future.
David L. Bitters, Ph.D.

Maybe you have some thoughts you d like to communicate to Ms. Kelly too. Her e-mail address is

Items We Need

Please let us know if you know where we can find:
Flat-bottom boat
Mid-size tractor
Bulletin Board
Microwave oven
Weed Eater
Pay phone for members

Does it not seem strange that here in the United States, a nation to which millions have fled to escape all kinds of tyrannies, we have not apparently come full circle, and we find a tyranny that threatens us, a group seeking to dominate the vast majority who only wish to be left in peace to practice ways of life that do not harm others?
James G. Dodge, a Catholic priest
reprinted from Nude & Naturial 16.1