Thursday, January 30, 2020

A Message from our Executive Director, Rick Johnson

I can’t believe it’s our 35th anniversary this year! How time flies, for sure. For those that have been around since the 90’s, you’ve seen a lot of changes in GNI. We’ve had many fantastic years and we’ve had some challenging ones but we’ve seen the spirit of our GNI brethren stand in unity to weather any storm that has been thrown our way over the decades. Of course, none of this is possible without you and your unwavering support for this fantastic group of men.

We also just began a new decade! That’s also hard to believe as well. I mean, we’re already one-fifth of the way into this new decade, but I remember the turn of the century like it was yesterday. Yes, many things have changed.  Thanks for modern science, we now have life-saving medication to keep men healthy and let’s not forget the Obergefell ruling by the United States Supreme Court acknowledging our right to marriage equality in every state. It was almost impossible to believe that just twenty years ago either of these things would be seen in our lifetimes, yet, here we are. Indeed, we are thankful for progress.

I’d like to start this New Year on a positive note letting you all know there is renewed excitement and growth within GNI. Last year (2019), we had over 220 first timers at The Gathering and we are hopeful that the majority of men will return again this year. We also had one of the largest international crowds in years hailing men from all over the world from faraway places including Australia, New Zealand, Germany, France, United Kingdom, Honduras, Brazil, Belgium, Denmark, Spain, Russia, and never to be forgotten, our closest neighbor, Canada.

The recent Boot’s ‘N Bourbon Party at Mid-Atlantic Leather in Washington DC this January was another huge success! I won’t steal Pocono Eagle’s thunder, but suffice it to say that Pocono Eagle continues to grow and sign more men up for naked camp every day. Thank you, Pocono Eagle! Over the next few months, you’ll be hearing more from Pocono Eagle on some exciting news.

There’s also a buzz amongst cabin coordinators who’ve already reached out to me letting me know they are already making plans to fill their cabins. No doubt, every cabin is going to be in use come August and we are more than expecting to completely fill to capacity! This is great news for everyone, but it also means planning and preparation on your part well in advance so you don’t find yourself on a waitlist to register.

Preparations are well underway for a smashing dance-club experience this year! Team Dance Club, the men who bring you our yearly disco, has been hosting GNI’s world-class club and this year will be no different. We’ll announce what they’re planning to do later when all of their organization has been completed. Stay tuned for that. 

Furthermore, Body Electric and our popular Yoga Retreat are returning again and we’re expanding our sexology programming which we first introduced in 2019. Don’t wait to register for Body Electric or Yoga; you can do so on the Gathering registration form.

I was on the phone with Howard the other day and he said, “Be sure to tell the guys that I’m so looking forward to seeing them again and helping GNI celebrate its 35thanniversary!” Howard has been such a supporter of GNI and of naturism over the years that he also was awarded the Murray Kaufman Natural Man Award in 2019! Stop by the main camp office if you need any help with the camp or just to say “Hi.”

There is lots more on tap that we’re working on but we can’t announce quite yet; suffice it to say that this is all exciting news. We hope that you join us for one of our landmark, anniversary years. Plan early and bring a friend, or three! Registration for naked camp is now open and confirmations are being issued quickly. Don’t wait!