Hanlan's Point Beach
|Hanlan's Point Beach|
A sign indicating the start of the clothing optional section of Hanlan's Point Beach
|Type||Clothing optional public beach|
|Created||1862, Clothing optional beach recognized March 17, 2002|
|Operated by||Toronto Parks|
Hanlan's Point Beach is a public beach situated on Hanlan's Point in the Toronto Islands near Toronto, Ontario on the shore of Lake Ontario. A 1 kilometre-long part of the beach was officially recognized by the city in 2002 as being clothing optional.
Hanlan's Point Beach was a traditional site for nude sunbathing for decades. In 1999, Toronto City Council approved a one-year pilot project for a nude beach at Hanlan's Point following a proposal by naturist organization and Councillor Kyle Rae. In 2000, the council extended the project for another two years. Finally in 2002, the clothing-optional beach was made permanent.
The Toronto City Council decision was met with strong opposition from conservative councillors such as Giorgio Mammoliti. It was also an infrequent target of police crackdowns for nude sunbathing. Its official status has resulted in a distinct increase in ferry traffic, and it appears to be a profitable component of public- and private-sector advertising campaigns, since it draws visitors to Toronto. Police and park officials now work in partnership with the beachgoers to maintain the friendly atmosphere. Some nudists have advocated to make the clothing optional side of Hanlan's Point Beach a nude beach due to what they see as an excessive amount of clothed people on the clothing optional side of the beach.
It is the second officially recognized clothing-optional beach in Canada and the only one created by a municipal bylaw. Canada's only other official clothing-optional beach is Wreck Beach in Vancouver, British Columbia.
The effective beach season starts in late May and ends in late September, while actual swimming off the beach is possible only well within this period. In recent years, the beach and islands as a whole have experienced flooding due to high water levels in the early summer.
As is common for most public nudist-friendly venues, males make up a large percentage of the users of the beach, but women can make up to one quarter of the total on popular weekends. Recent years continue to see an increase in the number of families who attend. The beach is a popular destination for the city's gay community. The beach is also the regular site of day trips by several local nudist organizations.
Despite its proximity to Toronto Harbour, the beach can boast extremely good water quality since it faces southwest and away from the mainland. Water quality is monitored daily (on weekdays) during the summer and meets a Blue Flag standard set by the Foundation for Environmental Education.
- Halstead, Joe (March 7, 2002). "Economic Development and Parks Committee Report" (PDF). Toronto Commissioner of Economic Development, Culture and Tourism. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 14, 2012. Retrieved 2014-04-12.
- "Report No. 3 of the Economic Development and Parks Committee" (PDF). City of Toronto. Retrieved 26 April 2014.
- Porter, Catherine (March 30, 2011). "Porter: Thank you, Giorgio Mammoliti, for livening up city hall". Toronto Star. thestar.com. Retrieved 2014-04-12.
- "Hanlan's Point nudists want beach-goers to bare all | The Star". thestar.com. Retrieved 2019-11-30.
- Basford, David; Deschenes, Stephane; Rappoport, Paul, eds. (May 30, 2000). The Canadian Guide to Naturism including Clubs, Resorts & Beaches (4 ed.). Federation of Canadian Naturists. p. 109. ISBN 0-9682332-2-8.
- "Discover Gay Toronto's Queer West Village". OuteXpressions. Gay West Community Network Inc. (Queer West). Retrieved March 2, 2012.
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