Thursday, 10 April 2014

Nude Geocaching at Bare Oaks

Geocaching clothing free

Bare Oaks has its own geocache! (since last year actually)

The location of the cache was the subject of debate. While having one near the road would make it accessible to more people, we decided that be more interesting to have one deep inside the park. That would provide the greatest challenge given the nudity requirement if they came during warm weather.

A policy was instituted that seekers of the cache receive a complimentary pass when they tell the office that they are there to find the geocache. They would have to show photo ID and register like any visitor but no fee would be required. (it's not cool to setup a cache just to generate admission revenue)

However, it ended up creating a whole bunch of trouble. Groundspeak Inc., the corporation that owns the most popular website known as geocaching.com refused to allow the cache because of the nudity requirement. A geocache you can do nudeWe got into a big argument that many other locations have regulations and that ours could be avoided by coming during cold weather. But they wouldn't budge. Each time we successfully dismissed their argument they came up with a new one. Ultimately, they probably decided that they were uncomfortable with the nudity aspect in general and were just trying to find a way to apply their existing regulations to refuse the cache. It's strange because Geocaching.com is full of discussions about nude geocachers.

So we listed the cache in OpenCaching.us instead. The cache is called "Barely Hidden" (#OU0652). It was logged for the first time last July.

Blake setup the geocache. If you have any questions, suggestions, or if there is a problem with the cache, please feel free to contact him at: geocache@BareOaks.ca


Friday, 4 April 2014

Hot Tub Update #3


The replacement heater is on a truck coming from California. Depending on how co-operative Canadian Customs are, it should be here either Monday or Tuesday. The installers have been scheduled accordingly and we plan to have the hot tub back in operation for next weekend. (April 12th)

As mentioned in our previous updates, we had to order a brand new replacement heater because Jandy, the manufacturer of our current heating unit, is no longer supporting what they consider to be an outdated model. (we purchased it new just 4 years ago) We did a lot of searching but we had to accept that some of the replacement parts we needed we not available. We therefore had no other choice but to order a brand new replacement heater. The type we needed (it’s a very big hot tub) was not in stock and had to be manufactured for us.

We are very sorry for the inconvenience. We appreciate the patience, sympathy, and support that we have received from several of the members as we have gone through this unexpected and expensive undertaking.

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Management changes


Karen has decided not to return for the 2014 season. After 5 years of dedicated service as the park manager, she felt that it was time to try something different. Since 2009, Karen has been a tireless supporter of the park. She survived many challenges during those years and lived through an enormous amount of change. We are very thankful for her consistent dedication, infinite enthusiasm, boundless energy and tenacious efforts. But she’s not leaving the park. She remains a passionate member so we will continue to benefit from her cheerful disposition and warm heart.

Nikki has agreed to take on the role of Operations Manager. It is great to see how much her skills have developed in the more than 6 years she has worked here. She was our first summer student in 2008. When she was featured in a Toronto Star article about working at Bare Oaks, her other employer expressed concern. But she decided that naturism was the right way and, fortunately for us, opted for working at Bare Oaks full-time during that summer. Naturism became a fierce passion of hers. She returned for successive seasons and, after she graduated, even worked part-time during the winter season. With each subsequent year, Nikki has accepted increased responsibilities with enthusiasm and grasped every opportunity to go beyond the tasks assigned to her. But it is in her people skills that she has really excelled. That's probably why Nikki has become such a popular yoga instructor. No need to worry, she's not giving that up!

Sunday, 30 March 2014

Cabins in the Parking Lot

Bare Oaks Family Naturist Park cabins

Many people have asked about the 3 cabins parked in our front lot. Those are our new Cozy Cabin accommodations.  They will eventually join the single cabin that arrived in the fall. (as soon as the snow melts and the ground dries out)

Cozy comfort in the Bare Oaks cabinsThe cabins fill a gap in our overnight options. They are an affordable choice for people who want a ready place to stay – either because they don't own a tent or camper; are coming from far away (e.g. overseas); or just want the convenience of having everything set for them when they arrive.

The cabins are insulated and equipped with double-pane windows. That, combined with the forced-air propane furnace means that they will be comfortable from early spring to late fall.

They sleep up to 6 people. The two double beds each have a single bunk above them. We will provide the linens.

Floor plan of the Bare Oaks Cozy Cabins
Floor Plan (click to enlarge)
There is a small kitchen with an under-counter refrigerator and microwave. A BBQ with side-burner is also included with each unit. We will equip each cabin with all the kitchens basics. (pots, pans, dishes, cutlery, etc...)

What the cabins do not have is water. But since they will be located on sites 240 and 241 near the comfort station in Beckett Circle, it's an easy walk to the washroom, showers, and dishwashing station.

The are many advantages to having these units built as trailers:
  • Built by experienced craftspeople
  • Built under controlled factory conditions (climate control)
  • Computer designed and cut for accuracy
  • Less waste of material
  • Meet stringent CSA standards for safety
  • Cabin manufacturing at General Coach Canada
    Cabin Manufacturing
    (click to enlarge)
  • No building permit required
  • Faster than building them ourselves (6 weeks from order to delivery)
  • Can easily be moved to different locations in the park
  • Comparable cost to building them ourselves
  • No staff time required to plan, source material, build and supervise
The manufacturer is General Coach Canada which was established in Hensall, Ontario in 1950 and is still located there today. They are the oldest RV manufacturer still operating in Canada.

General Coach has had numerous corporate owners during the past 60 years. They included companies such as Divco Wayne, Boise Cascade, Bendix Corporation, Commodore Corporation and for 28 years, Thor Industries. In May 2010 Thor Industries sold all interest in General Coach Canada to Roger Faulkner who previously held the position of President. Roger and his son Chris Faulkner continue the legacy. So the company is now family owned and operated, giving it the personal touch.

Cabin manufacturing at General Coach Canada
Cabin Manufacturing
(click to enlarge)
Today, General Coach Canada is totally focused on their line of park model recreational vehicles, cabins and mobile homes. They are built with the finest materials; not mass-produced but hand crafted by small town Canadian craftsmen who take pride in every unit they build. General Coach boasts the very best warranty in the business along with a parts and service department that genuinely cares.

Bare Oaks is a General Coach dealer so if you are interested in any of their products, we can assist you. They have a broad selection from these simple cabins to elaborate park model trailers that provide as much luxurious comfort as any home. You can view some of them on their website: http://www.generalcoach.on.ca/ But not all of their products are listed and anything you see can be endlessly customized. If there is something you want, just let us know.



Saturday, 29 March 2014

Beckett Circle Road Closure


It's finally starting to warm up and feel like spring. It's great to see temperatures above freezing and to feel the sun regaining its cheery warmth that's been missing all winter. Environment Canada is predicting sun for the beginning of next week with temperatures of  8-10ºC at the beginning of the week. But that also means we're getting our yearly muddy road mess. So until the ground thaws and absorbs all that water or things dry up a bit, we have to close Beckett Circle to vehicles in order to prevent road damage. Of course, everyone is welcome to walk around everywhere but rubber boots are definitely recommended!

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Bare Oaks Players


Empowered by the success of the performances of The Vagina Monologues last summer, the cast has formed the Bare Oaks Players. They are joined by several other members of Bare Oaks Family Naturist Park who share a passion for theater and performance. The troupe is now made up of a variety of people aged 17 to 55 with a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences. They are working to select new pieces to perform throughout the year.

Their next event will be June 22 at 1pm. It is called Solstice Potluck Poetry.

It's great to see the creation of a theater troupe at the park. The development of cultural and intellectual elements is a sign that we have a thriving naturist community at Bare Oaks.

If you are interested in joining them or just attending future performances, you can follow their new blog: BOP.BareOaks.ca

You can also subscribe to their email list: http://www.feedblitz.com/f/?Sub=936160




Tuesday, 18 March 2014

2014 Trip to France

Water Park at the CHM Montalivet

Based on the success of the 2013 trip to France, we decided to do it again! But by popular request, we are now offering more flexibility. This year you have the option 1 or 2 weeks at the CHM Montalivet and an additional trip to Paris is also an option. Airfare is no longer included to allow for multiple departure points and to give you more flexibility. (e.g. some people want to use frequent flyer points to get there)

The trip is once again being organized by one of our members, Pauline from Nakations.ca.
The beach on the Atlantic Ocean in the CHM Montalivet near Bordeaux, France.

While the modern naturist movement is generally accepted to have started in Germany, it was France that perfected the large scale naturist resort. The combination of warm southern France, beaches on the ocean, and the French passion for vacationing naturally combined to create massive naturist resorts.

The oldest of these resorts is the Centre Helio Marin Montalivet – best known as the CHM Montalivet. With over 3,000 sites (tent, RV, cabins, and bungalows) and as many as 15,000 people per day, Montalivet is certainly one of the largest naturist resort in France. (you can listen to a podcast about Montalivet) The commercial centre in the middle of the resort has 22 shops and restaurants.

Karen and Stephane enjoying a morning coffee and fresh bread in one of the restaurants at the CHM Montalivet.
After World War 2, the naturist movement around Paris had quickly returned and was growing. Two of its leaders, Christiane et Albert Lecocq, realized that naturists needed a vacation destination. After a bit of searching, they ended up leasing some beachfront on the Atlantic near Bordeaux. Thus, the CHM Montalivet was founded in 1950.

Walking to the beach on the Atlantic Ocean at the CHM Montalivet
Montalivet was not just a place to relax. It was also a place to live a naturist life and develop the philosophy. To this day, discussions and lectures are an integral part of Montalivet. Some of the greatest thinkers in the French naturist movement have been members. In 1953, the French naturist federation (FFN) and the International Naturist Federation (INF) were created at Montalivet.

Now you have a chance to spend a week in the CHM Montalivet and experience European naturism!


    Paris, France
  • June 28 - July 5 (one week) or June 28 - July12 (two weeks) at the CHM Montalivet.
  • Optional 4 days/3 night in Paris, July 12 - 15
  • Optional excursions in both Bordeaux and Paris
  • Affordable! Discounted group pricing on accommodations. All costs included except for your meals which you can cost-effectively prepare yourself in your bungalow while at Montalivet.
  • Maximum of 50 people (capacity of the bus) which is as few as 25 couples and less if they have children. So book soon if you want to be included. First come, first served!
Photos, pricing and other details at:






Friday, 28 February 2014

Hot Tub - Update #2


The replacement heater that meets our needs is not in stock. It has to be manufactured in California. They estimate 4 weeks. That means the hot tub will not be available again until April.

As mentioned in our previous update, Jandy, the manufacturer of our current heating unit is no longer supporting what they consider to be an outdated model. (we purchased it new just 4 years ago) After a lot of searching, we had to accept that some of the replacement parts we needed we no longer available. We therefore had no other choice but to order a brand new replacement heater.

The hot tub heater rotted from the outside in. It wasn’t the pool or hot tub water that destroyed it. It was the elements. We were told it was an outdoor unit. Apparently that means:
1) Outside and running all the time in a climate like Florida; or
2) Outside and shut off during the winter in climates like Canada

Of course, that was never made clear to us when we purchased it. Apparently in the cold winter temperatures, whenever the unit would shut off after running for a bit, condensation would form on all the inside parts which is what caused the corrosion from the outside in. So the next unit will be installed inside a small insulated shed. It should then last for about 8 to 10 years instead of the 4 we got.

We apologize again for the inconvenience. The staff misses the hot tub as much as everyone else during this cold weather. Everyone is working as fast as they can to fix the problem.

Photo: Daniel Wakefield Pasley/Emiliano Granado
Umpqua Hot Springs, Oregon
www.yonderjournal.com/guides/umpqua-hot-springs

Friday, 14 February 2014

Hot Tub Update


Unfortunately, Jandy, the manufacturer of our heating unit is no longer supporting what they consider to be an outdated model. (we purchased it new just 4 years ago) After a lot of searching, we have to accept that some of the replacement parts we need are not available. We therefore have no other choice but to order a brand new replacement heater. That likely means another few weeks of downtime.

We are very sorry.
We all miss the hot tub during this cold weather.

Thursday, 13 February 2014

The Untitled Feminist Show


Yesterday, Linda and I attended the premiere of the Untitled Feminist Show at Harbourfront Centre’s Fleck Dance Theatre. This play by Brooklyn-based playwright Young Jean Lee is best described by their press release which states "Without dialogue, clothing or traditional gender signifiers on stage, six performers shake up gender norms and confront matters of sameness, differentiation and the seven stages of womanhood in this unconventional and highly adventurous dance-narrative."

The show is getting good reviews. Naomi Skwarna's review in Toronto Life is titled "This all-nude burlesque is the weirdest thing ever to hit the Toronto stage—and the must-see event of the season".

We found the show entertaining, engaging, and thought provoking. At times, the performances we amusing - intentionally. While there was clearly meaning in all of the scenes, it wasn't always clear to us. But as with many artistic renditions, our attempt to interpret and analyze the intent is part of experience. The show was brief (about an hour) but I doubt that the 6 performers could sustain that amount of energy any longer.

Of course, the nudity wasn't jarring at all to us. It only felt odd to be clothed while the performers were nude; it gave me a feeling of being a bit of a voyeur. But other than that, it was what you would expect to see when a performance is done in a naturist setting—a bunch of normal people of all shapes and sizes unconcerned with their bodies and focused on their performance. But of course, it means a lot more to most spectators. As Skwarna says in her review, "The crude nudity is a lightning rod. The actors’ soft bellies, bare nipples and pubic hair will provoke and appall respectable theatregoers. But by the end of the show, the nudity is no longer a catalyst. It’s a neutralizer, a way to clear the palette of femininity, to lay each idea out and see it for what it very often is—an accessory." That's actually a pretty good summary of why nudity is an important aspect of the naturist philosophy.

But I'm not certain that the performers' nudity was much more than another costume for them. They return at the end for their curtain call fully dressed. It leaves me pondering whether they are able to be comfortable with their natural bodies in the real world. Are they covered prior to their entrance? Do they feel the need to be dressed in the dressing room? Can they find identity off-stage without clothing? Are they as confident nude when they are not performing their role?

The Untitled Feminist Show is well worth seeing. You can analyze it from a feminist perspective. Or look at it through the eyes of all of the textiles who attend and see what it means to be a naturist. Either direction is an interesting intellectual exercise. I recommend catching it before it leaves Toronto.

The show is on every night until Saturday (Feb. 15)
Harbourfront Centre’s Fleck Dance Theatre
235 Queens Quay West, Toronto
Tickets are available either by phone +1 416-973-4000
or online at: www.harbourfrontcentre.com/boxoffice/

Untitled Feminist Show Website: www.youngjeanlee.org/feminist

- Stéphane

#artlive 
Photo: Julieta Cervantes