Fire Island has been racked with bad luck for the past year--what with the fire that destroyed the Pavilion dance club--but now, according to Newsday, it seems the popular gay destination will be seeing less (and possibly wearing more) on the beach this summer. Officials for the Fire Island National Seashore announced that they will start enforcing long-standing--and often ignored--laws banning nude sunbathing.
The decision, they say, is based on increased popularity of Fire Island's Lighthouse Beach, which attracts as many as 4,000 sunbathers on summer days. "We've been struggling to make it work because Fire Island has a history of [nude sunbathing] and people have been coming there for years," said Fire Island chief ranger Lena Koschmann. "The more we talked about it and researched it, the more we realized that that use wasn't compatible with an areal like Lighthouse Beach."
The primarily gay communities Cherry Grove and Fire Island Pines are significantly east of Lighthouse Beach, but Koschmann said that the ban will be enforced across the island, including the traditionally nude stretch between Cherry Grove and the Pines.