First Rain

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First Rain is an annual event held at the University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC) which began at Porter College. It is also known as the Naked Run. During the first rainfall of the school year, students run naked through the campus, generally starting at Porter College.


First Rain started in fall of 1989, following the weeks of the Loma Prieta earthquake. Beginning at Porter College, they proceeded to walk across the length of the UCSC campus naked. This was the beginning of the tradition of First Rain. The First Rain began because students were afraid to sleep inside the Porter College dorms after the earthquake. The Porter students supported each other in a large outdoor sleepover. In a community game of dares, they dared each other to run around naked. Although some students slept outside in the quad the first night following the earthquake, the dorms were quite safe, and students moved back in almost immediately.

Over the past several years, First Rain's prerequisite formation rules were formed in order to give more students the chance to run: the run would only form on a school night, and rain had to fall almost nonstop for the entire day. At 10:00 pm, the run would begin in Porter. Historically however, First Rain runs did not have prerequisites to be met before beginning: these rules did not exist before the mid-2000s. During the 1990s, the rules were very simple: as soon as the heavy rains of the year fell, students were to disrobe and run. This is because nonstop rain would sometimes not occur before Winter Break.[1] Aiming to make this event a yearly tradition as it is at other universities, the students decided on running during the first rain of every school year (since other events, like the first school day or first snow had already been taken by other universities).[2]


  1. ^ Hendrickson, Wayne (1998). Don't Tell the Parents!: a delightful narrative of sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll in today's colleges. Mount Hermon, California: Hearth & Home Productions. pp. 103–106. 
  2. ^ Hendrickson, Wayne (2007-05-16). Story Time With Wayne (Speech). Fireside Lounge, Porter College, UCSC.