Willow Trees Cut Down At Wisconsin Nude Beach To Reduce Sexual Activity

Woman At The Beach

Madison, Wis. – Willow trees lining the Mazomanie nude beach on the Wisconsin River have been removed to reduce alleged sexual activity and provide more sun for nesting turtles, the state Department of Natural Resources says.

“These willows just became a cruising area for people looking for sexual activity out there,” Steve Colden, the Lower Wisconsin State Riverway’s property manager, said Monday in an interview with The Capital Times of Madison.

The nude beach has been used by naturists for more than 50 years.

Bob Morton, executive director of the Naturist Action Committee, said his Oshkosh-based group approved of the DNR’s attempts to control sexual activity on the beach.

“If there is overt sexual activity in public, it jeopardizes the beach,” he said.

“Naturists do know the difference between nudity and sex and we wish everyone did.”

Colden said cutting the willow trees would also help soft-shell and hard-shell turtles which nest on the beach. A DNR biologist noticed a decrease in the number of nesting turtles because the beach had become too shaded by the willows, he said.

A wooded area next to the beach will also be closed to the public from April 1 to Sept. 15 to prevent sexual activity from moving there, Colden said.

Ralph Ovadal, pastor of Pilgrims Covenant Church in Monroe, and a small group of his followers started protesting at the beach in 1998. He was convicted of disorderly conduct and fined $1,000 for harassing a sunbather in 2001.

He praised the DNR’s decision to cut down the trees.

“I do hope the day is not far off,” Ovadal said, “when Mazo beach is once again fully restored to its original use as a wildlife area and available for the enjoyment of all the citizens of Wisconsin, rather than being a mecca for individuals who have a desire to parade themselves stark naked on public property in front of children.”

Source

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