Thanks to an invite from Northern Exposure Naturists (NEN), and the fact that my girlfriend's birthday was a few days ago, I decided to surprise her with a bowling trip so she could celebrate in her birthday suit! Besides, we've never tried any naked bowlin' yet. It sounds like fun!
We had a dreadfully long and rainy 3.5 hour trip to a tiny bowling alley in a tiny town outside of greater Milwaukee area. After ignoring the "Sorry We're Closed" sign and getting through the papered-over door, we found ourselves in a bar full (20 or so) of naked people. Nobody was bowling, and the event was supposed to start an hour ago. Instead, they were drinking and a few were smoking. Not quite the evening I had in mind.
Thanks to our pseudo-celebrity status, we were instantly recognized by those who read N magazine. We're now called "the geocachers" instead of "the freehikers" from the article last year. Besides that, simply being young and new to the place brought forth attention from everyone.
Some of the regulars decided to start up a game and invited us to join them. Of course we agreed. Seconds later, the one in charge was giving us a small tour. Here's the bar, there's a small locker room that nobody uses, shoes are behind that counter, there's the couple who own the place, have a good time! We peeled away our clothes and we were getting ready to join the group. While we were apart and I was still busy getting ready, the one in charge returned to my girlfriend and asked more questions. She signaled me over to help answer. Within a few minutes he was talking our ears off with stories. The group was waving us over throughout the stories, and we eventually managed to break away.
This sort of thing happens a lot, and it does get on my nerves after a while. People approach my girlfriend to start up a conversation (or vice-versa), she waves me over to help answer something, I start talking to the person, she excuses herself, and the process repeats. I'm always getting pulled around. She's the social butterfly who meets everyone (and who everyone wants to meet), and I'm the encyclopedia who can hold a good informative conversation.
During our three games of bowling with the group, and a few games with others (which I was too busy in discussion to actually bowl), I realized a few things: First is that my girlfriend bowls way better without clothing. Second, despite being better, the four men bowled much better games than the three women. Third, the women made up for it by being cute and entertaining. Lastly, I don't bowl as good when one of the women keeps saying I have a cute butt.
Surprisingly, an hour after we were there someone younger than us showed up! (She was one of the women who later bowled with us, when I was too busy.) Other than us three, the rest of the crowd had to be at least a decade older. This fact had one of the guys worried, and he just had to talk to us...
After trying communication with the social butterfly, he was forwarded to me. His concern was that the crowd was aging too much, and that there should be a lot of interest in naturist activities from people in Milwaukee. But, as he stated, there are no known naturist organizations in Milwaukee and therefore no communication medium to bring in new people to the bowling events. We talked shop for quite a while, and he told stories for quite a while. I didn't mind talking shop, but the endless stories were killing my fun.
In retrospect, I should've asked more questions to this guy and to the one in charge. It was my understanding that NEN had set up this bowling event in the Fall and this was the third one of the season. But, it seems I was wrong. The one in charge wasn't related to NEN, and the other guy said it was a monthly event over the winter and that he's been attending for 14 years. They're not associated with any organizations. Many of the regulars visit Dragonfly Beach, Sun Ray Hills, VVRC, and sometimes Mazo Beach.
To add to my confusion, there's no entry fee. Shoe rental is free. And, we don't pay for any games that we play. I don't know for sure, but I highly doubt that the bowling group pays a lump sum for renting the place. I guess the money is made in selling food and drinks. We asked what we need to pay for, and the one in charge said to tip generously. A cheapskate could easily attend and bowl naked without paying a cent.
We were no cheapskates. My girlfriend put some money in the jukebox and I generously tipped when I ordered my highly recommended bacon cheeseburger. Best bacon cheeseburger I've had! I had to hurry up to eat it though, as time flew and we needed to get dressed and get home. How could 5 hours go so fast? Oh right...the conversations!
I wanted to bowl at least one more game, and wanted to take some pictures of us bowling. (I at least got one good picture taken of both of us before the lanes filled up.) I also wanted to play pool. But, I never got a chance.
We both enjoyed the event. We'd probably enjoy it more next time, since our presence would be less of a novelty. They're a great group, but like most nudists they just love to socialize. Maybe even a little too much.