Not many students know that Haverford is actually clothing-optional.
For Full Mooner Lunar, this has been the perfect opportunity to “reclaim nudity as a non-sexual thing,” according to Abby Reuscher ’17, one of the club’s co-heads. Full Mooner Lunar, which was set up in the 2015/16 school year and is currently run by Reuscher and Chris Pence ’18, hopes to encourage the Haverford community to think about the social norm surrounding nudity.
But what does ‘Full Mooner Lunar’ actually mean?
“To moon someone is to show someone your buttocks, so the name ‘Full Mooner Lunar’ is a play on that,” Reuscher explained. “We moon the moon!”
And indeed, the first thing that the club does when it meets every full moon is just that.
Last month, on a warm Saturday evening, a group of 12 students gathered on the nature trail at the apartments for a first taste of the club’s activities. In varying degrees of nudity, they walked the nature trail to the duck pond and hung out. On other occasions there has even been spontaneous yoga.
Although the club’s name suggests full nudity, Reuscher says that participants should be only as nude as they want. Some choose to keep their underwear on while others, who are just looking to explore, keep their clothes on.
For reasons of privacy, the club does not maintain a Facebook page. Instead, Reuscher actively posters around campus when an event is coming up.
Postering was also how Reuscher got to know about the club. Drawn to the eye-catching posters designed by the previous club heads, Reuscher joined an event in November last year. Amidst the cold November breeze, the image of seeing naked bodies with just hats, socks, and even a tie drew her into the club.
As for Pence, Full Mooner Lunar has been a liberating space, an act of rebellion and a chance to challenge the stigma of nudity. He was introduced to Full Mooner Lunar by his friends in the group and it appealed to his thrill-seeking personality.
While the participants may seem like a group of hippies, Reuscher dismisses that misconception. Another common idea is that Full Mooner Lunar is a streaking club which she said is not true. The point of the club, she says, is to feel comfortable in your own skin.
What about people who come for voyeuristic purposes?
“So far there hasn’t been anybody, but that thought has definitely occurred to me,” Reuscher explains. “I hope this won’t be a problem in the future.”
Full Mooner Lunar is hoping to put on more events this year. The next event will be a nipple pasties party in November. As a Haverford-funded club, Full Mooner Lunar uses the money to buy nipple pasties for this event. This is Pence’s favorite party at Haverford so far and it promises to be a night of relaxed and carefree fun. Like all other Full Mooner Lunar events, the level of nudity is up to the individual to decide.
As for future plans, Reuscher is looking to branch out and to organize a nude dinner, with the goal of making the movement about embracing one’s body and not being ashamed of how one looks.
With recent campaigns such as the Free the Nipple movement, which focuses on gender equality and empowerment, Full Mooner Lunar is an opportunity on campus to question the stigma against nudity.
“Human bodies are beautiful and they should be celebrated,” says Reuscher.