Article by Mike Dendurent
Published in the “Bulletin” April 2018

Being a nudist is a lot of things: It’s fun … freeing … fulfilling … FANTASTIC! But nobody ever said it was easy.
If we want to be nude in our backyard, we must be sure our fence is high enough — or our patio secluded enough — that our neighbors won’t be able to catch a shocking glimpse of our bare buns. If we want to be nude in our living room, we have to be certain to keep our “window shades all pulled completely down,” as the song “Harper Valley PTA” says.
If we want to be naked in the company of others, we often must travel many miles to reach our favorite — or the closest — nudist park, resort or beach, and then pay for the privilege of hanging out (pardon the expression) with our undressed friends.
Then, of course, there’s the matter of the weather. One of the first things my wife Joyce and I were told when we made our first visit to a nudist park was, “We’re nudists, but we’re not stupid. We put on clothes when it gets cold.”
Our nudist park in Kansas, Prairie Haven, south of Topeka, is open from mid-April through October. At the end of one season, Prairie Haven’s Facebook page said, “It’s a sad time of year when our camp closes for the winter.” It is indeed. But to my way of thinking, Prairie Haven is much closer to Paradise on an 85-degree day in July than it would be during an 8-inch snowfall in February.
A friend of ours at Kansas’ Sandy Lane Club, near Hutchinson, is a brave man. He tries to spend time nude at Sandy Lane at least once EVERY month of the year. I admire his pluck, and I’ve tried to (sort of) emulate him by venturing naked out onto our patio at home on sunshiny winter days. Last winter was fairly mild in Kansas, and I was able to spend a little time out there each month.
But I’m not very courageous when it comes to cold, and I generally live by the personal code: “I’d rather be naked than clothed, but I’d rather be warm than naked.”
The experts say Kansas has 221 sunshiny days each year, which keeps things bright and warmer than, say, Canada … or even Nebraska. But there’s still plenty of cold in Kansas, which means we Kansans who love to be naked also sometimes have to be inventive.
I depend on my electric blanket — not just at bedtime but other times as well.
I do about a half-hour of stretches every evening and, as every nudist knows, EVERYTHING is better if you do it naked — including exercising. So in winter, when I want to do my stretches in the nude, I spread the electric blanket on the living room carpet, turn up the heat, and use the toasty cover as my exercise mat.
It works great, and when exercise time is over, I can slip into my recliner and pull the warm blanket over my naked body. I’m telling you, “nice” doesn’t describe how nice that feels!
But Kansas doesn’t ever get as frigid as Michigan, Minnesota, Massachusetts, Manitoba and other northern states and provinces that are homes to AANR clubs. I applaud the intrepid folks who go nude in those places. I’ll bet they all have electric blankets too!
I think that those who run nudist parks in that part of the world must be eternal optimists — always looking on the sunny side of life — because there certainly must be days when the only sunshine around is that found in their hearts and souls.
Is being nude worth the effort? For me, that’s like asking if it’s worth the effort to take my next breath or eat my next meal.
I have found that when I am nude it is like I have gained a sixth sense. I have a heightened awareness of everything: the warmth of the sun, the kiss of the breeze, the touch of a soft towel, even the sights and sounds around me.
I’ll never forget the first time I went skinny-dipping in a crystal-clear pool at a nudist park — as an older adult. It was a sensation like none I had ever experienced. Any nudist would know what I mean. I remember thinking, just after entering the water, “Why in the world did I wait so long to do this?”
Now, every time I step into a pool at Prairie Haven or some other park or resort, I’m thankful for the wonderful opportunity to be a nudist. I believe any nudist would understand that feeling too.
Since that first experience, Joyce and I have enjoyed many delightful days at Prairie Haven, visits to the iconic resorts Cypress Cove and Sunsport Gardens in Florida and Glen Eden in California and swimming nude in the Atlantic Ocean at Florida’s Haulover and Blind Creek Beaches. And we plan to do lots more.
So, yes, for us, nudism is definitely worth the effort. In fact, when we consider how nudism benefits our bodies, soothes our minds and lifts our spirits, we realize that any effort we put forth to be nude is really no effort at all.

Prairie Haven Fee Schedule

Fees effective April 2017

Day Use Fees

AANR

Non-AANR

Member

Couples

$36.00

$40.00

$0.00

Singles

$36.00

$40.00

$0.00

Cabin Rentals

Include Day Fees.

Member discounts exclude holiday weekends

Daily

AANR

Daily

Non-AANR

Weekly

AANR

Weekly

Non-AANR

Member Discount

Daily

Member

Discount

Weekly

C1 & C2

$76.00

$80.00

$456.00

$480.00

$32.00

$192.00

T1 & T2

$106.00

$110.00

$636.00

$660.00

$56.00

$336.00

Oasis & Haven

$111.00

$$115.00

$$666.00

$690.00

$60.00

$360.00

Camping

Includes Day Fees

Daily AANR

Daily

Non-AANR

Weekly

AANR

Weekly

Non-AANR

Member

Discount Daily

Member

Discount

Weekly

Tent Camping

$51.00

$55.00

$306.00

$330.00

$12.00

$72.00

30 Amp RV site

$61.00

$65.00

$366.00

$390.00

$20.00

$120.00

50 Amp RV site

$63.00

$67.00

$378.00

$402.00

$22.00

$132.00

All daily membership fees paid by prospective members within the current calendar year shall apply toward membership.

30 AMP RV camping per month is $500.00 including daily membership fees.

50 AMP RV camping per month is $540.00 including daily membership fees.

Arrivals after 5 pm will pay half price daily membership fees.

Registration

Please call ahead to arrange your visit.

All non-members (even those who arrive accompanied by members), must register at the office upon arrival, where you will be asked to provide reasonable information and pay appropriate fees. Visitors, when you arrive at our front locked gate, please ring the buzzer; a camp host will contact you there and take you to the office for registration.

Basics

All persons are expected to sit on a towel as a matter of common courtesy.

Any person leaving the Club grounds will need to be adequately clothed. Parking is located inside camp grounds.

Pool

Read and obey all posted pool and hot tub signs. No lifeguard is on duty at the pool; use of the pool constitutes your agreement to swim at your own risk. Please shower before entering pool or hot tub.

Children

The parents, legal guardians, or an adult member of the Club must accompany single persons who are under legal voting age. Any under-age guest must be accompanied by an adult member of the Club and have written permission from their parents or legal guardian.

Pets

If you have a pet, ask the camp host about the limited areas where pets are not allowed. All pets must be confined, or kept on a leash, at all times. Owners must always pick up after their pets.

Pets known to have a propensity for aggressive behavior are prohibited. Several breeds of dogs are prohibited.

  • Chow Chows

  • Pit Bulls

  • Wolf Hybrids

  • Doberman Pinschers

Cameras

Camera privileges are limited to members in good standing. This includes cell phones and other devices with built-in cameras. No photographs or other recordable images shall be taken of any persons without their prior permission.

Firearms / Fireworks

Firearms are allowed but are to be kept in the member or visitors camper, trailer, cabin or car. No public display of firearms is allowed unless approved by a board member. Personal fireworks are not allowed

Alcohol/Drugs

Persons who are under the influence of alcoholic beverages or who possess or are under the influence of illegal narcotics or controlled substances shall not be permitted on the grounds of the Club.

Summary

Failure to observe these rules, common courtesy, adequate safety measures or any local, State or Federal law while on Club grounds, will result in eviction.

In the highly unlikely event that you encounter a problem or any inappropriate behavior from anyone, please inform a Prairie Haven Board member or camp host immediately.

If you have any other questions you would like answered, please feel free to contact us via contact page

We look forward to your visit to Prairie Haven.

Why do people choose nude recreation?

Nude recreation embraces the joy of living and experiencing nature in the most natural way possible. To relax and be nude is to let yourself be totally free. Although we enjoy clothing-free activities in appropriate settings, we also choose to wear clothes when practical. Nudists respect each other’s individuality. Our own self-esteem is enhanced by our ability to accept ourselves as we really are. We find it easy to accept others regardless of physical size, shape, or body condition. Moreover, social class distinctions, often indicated by clothing, disappear.

Relaxation, stress relief, positive body image, and increasing self-esteem are just a few of the reasons people choose the nudist lifestyle.

What are the benefits of nude recreation?

Self-esteem is enhanced in the nudist world, where body acceptance is the norm. Conversation seems to come easier. Many report the “time warp” phenomenon. A one day respite spent clothes-free seems to relax people more than an entire weekend elsewhere. Without clothes, stress seems to melt away

Is nude recreation an accepted mainstream activity?

The answer to this question is a resounding YES!

As reported in USA TODAY, The Yankelovich National Travel Monitor is one of the most respected polls in the travel industry. The 2006 edition of that poll found that 15% of adult Americans would consider a resort that offers a nude recreation experience or a clothing-optional beach experience either extremely or a very desirable part of a vacation.

In the January 17, 2003 edition of The Wall St. Journal, a front page story in the Marketplace section noted that nude recreation in North America has grown to a $400 million industry. The article explained that clothes-free offerings run the gamut from upscale venues with plush townhouses and room service to rustic rural retreats, to cruises on some of the world’s most popular cruise lines.

The Roper Organization has reported that some 54 million Americans have skinny-dipped in mixed company. For people who want to recapture the freedom and innocence of that experience, AANR clubs offer relaxing, down to earth, casual environments. Members may also participate in AANR World Adventures nudist vacations and cruises

Will I feel self-conscious?

Most first-timers adjust to social nudity in a matter of minutes and discover it’s not nearly as big a deal as they thought it would be. Some feel self-conscious before they undress since they’re likely to be the only ones not nude

What about our kids?

Children are natural nudists and quickly take to it like ducks take to water. Most clubs welcome children and encourage families to join. At these clubs, you’ll find activities and facilities for your kids to enjoy – and they’ll thank you for taking them along. As always, we recommend that if you are bringing your children, you call ahead to ask the club about its activity program and facilities. For more information please see our discussion of family values.

Do I have to be naked all the time?

While many people prefer to go nude 24 hours a day in clubs, others find it more practical to dress in the evenings when it gets cooler, for meals, or for some sports activities. A few clubs have policies requiring clothing in their dining areas, dance halls, and health clubs.

What if we receive unwelcome advances?

This rarely happens. If it does, simply report it to resort management and steps will be taken to ensure it does not happen again. Everyone should feel comfortable. Behavior requiring an apology is not tolerated.

 

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