The most exciting part of the skinny-dipping world record event were the close shave situations.
Just before 2 PM the situation doesn’t look too good. Soon, a world record attempt of one thousand people skinny-dipping should take place, but there are only a few hundred people getting ready to take a swim, packing their clothes in brown paper bags.
— Damn you Finns, if we don’t break this record, a man in the back shouts towards the sky.
Kirka from Joensuu and Niina Huhta and Atte Härkönen are also sitting on the beach with anticipation. The expectations are high.
— I was already here on Wednesday, practicing my steps. I’m either going to throw myself in, wade or swim, Kirka grins.
— I have to admit I’m a bit worried if there’s going to be come contact or close shave kind of situations, Härkönen says.
The group says being nude is a good thing and people should be encouraged to do it more often.
— In Finland, some people see it as kind of a bad thing. Being nude is only acceptable in sauna. Many of my friends have the need to take all their clothes off when they’re drunk. It’s freedom or anarchy. Or both.
Niina Huhta, Atte Härkönen and Kirka are ready for some skinny-dipping. Photo: Inka Nevalainen
But then, against all odds and the weather forecast, the sun comes out. People start to gather in the queue and their clothes start to come off.
— Is there still time to go to the bathroom? Or should I do it in the water? the men are pondering.
At 2.03, a man who’s standing nearby is the first to take his clothes off and run to the beach. Kirka follows him, gives him a hug and shakes his hand.
The participants get a green beanie and move towards stalls that make the head count easier.
— We’re getting really close to the record, only twenty people missing. There’s a lot of shit going on in the world, but this is not shit, says the announcer.
— Clothes off, clothes off, clothes off, almost a thousand naked people standing in the stalls shout at the audience. The last four minutes become half an hour.
What an amazing feeling! The crowd standing in the water made a horrible noise, the three skinny-dippers say. Photo: Inka Nevalainen
At last, the naked crowd is allowed to run into the water. There they have to wait for five minutes to break the record. The skinny-dippers are splashing, screaming and singing. When they hear there’s only 30 seconds left, they start to sing the Finnish national anthem.
After the skinny-dip, Kirka, Huhta and Härkönen return to the beach satisfied. At the same time it’s announced that yes, the world record attempt was indeed successful. The official result reached 789 skinny-dippers — three more than the previous record in Australia.
— Absolutely fantastic. At first, the water felt cold, but then you got used to it. Look at this white towel, the water’s turning it all brown, Kirka says.
And what about those close shave situations?
— Some guy’s hand touched my dick. I gave him a disapproving look, Härkönen reveals.
Text: Jonna Ekroos Photos: Inka Nevalainen Translation: Ida Käkelä