Naked and wet, more than 800 nudists paraded into the waters of Haulover Beach Sunday afternoon in an attempt to break the Guinness World Record for most skinny-dippers at a single venue.
The skin-baring event drew 805 people, breaking the previous record of 729 people set this past July on El Playazo Beach in Vera Playa, Almeria, Spain.
The world record, still pending approval from Guinness, took several hours, two counters and an independent supervisor.
Richard Mason, president of the South Florida Free Beaches Association, which sponsored the event, said preparation was strenuous. In addition to a list of signatures, Guinness required everyone to enter the water at the same location, creating a “gateway,” according to Mason. Two 11-foot steel rods and a “Guinness Gateway” sign greeted participants.
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“It’s like herding cats,” Mason said.
For the Haulover Beach nudists, the third time was a charm. Mason said a previous attempt in 2009, which attracted 879 people, did not meet all of the requirements. And an attempt earlier this July, during National Nude Recreation Week, was cancelled because of stormy weather.
“We wanted to delay it until the end of hurricane season,” Mason said of Sunday’s third attempt.
Nudists were given a wristband and counted before heading into the water, according to Perry Silver, the event’s supervisor and a director at the free beaches association. He plans to submit the official paperwork, among which includes “video footage and high-quality color photographs,” to Guinness this week.
Mason said this world record, if it holds, is a milestone for Haulover Beach, which became clothing optional almost 23 years ago.
“We never get the recognition,” he said.