In June 2016, Ian Lindeman a member of the Williams Crossing Bicycle Club (WCBC) visited Hobart, Tasmania to attend the Dark Mofo Festival. The festival featured a Winter Solstice Nude Swim in the Derwent River. The Winter Solstice is the shortest day of the year.
Ian participated in the event, along with 650 others. He enjoyed the swim and the enthusiasm of the participants. On his return to Canberra, Ian suggested to his WCBC friends that he thought it would be a good idea to hold a similar event in Canberra, but supporting charity. This was met with enthusiasm.
In 2017, Connie Johnson a cancer sufferer, was proactive in raising public awareness of breast cancer. Her “Love Your Sister” charity had raised millions of dollars for cancer research. Members of the WCBC were impressed with Connie’s efforts and decided a Winter Solstice Nude Charity Swim would be a unique way to raise funds for the Love Your Sister charity. However, there were a lot of barriers in organising a nude swim.
The costs associated with having a mandatory $20 million public liability cover; the fact that it would be against the law to swim nude and the necessity to obtain approvals to use the lake resulted in there being too many hoops to get through in the timeline remaining.
Against this background, on 21 June 2017 at 07.12am four (4) members of the WCBC illegally participated in the 1st Winter Solstice Nude Charity Swim at Yarralumla Beach in Lake Burley Griffin. The water temperate was a cool 10 degrees, it was foggy and the fire was a welcome relief after the swim. Over $2100 was raised for the Love Your Sister charity and we wish to thank the Old Canberra Inn for their support.
With the assistance of the ACT Government, the WCBC has made considerable inroads into making the 2nd Winter Solstice Nude Charity Swim a bigger event, which has the capacity to raise more funds for charity.
The Lions Club of Tuggeranong are supporting this year’s event by providing much of the logistical framework. The Green Shed has also been proactive in their support and we thank both organisations for their assistance.
It was decided to include another charity this year, Lifeline. Members of the WCBC are very conscious of the epidemic of mental illness affecting the young people in our community. When making your entry donation of $30, you have the choice of which charity you wish to support. When making a general donation, all monies received are split between the two charities 50:50. Please note that all monies raised are paid to the charities. No remuneration is paid, as all expenses etc are met from sponsors or individual donors from the WCBC.