The Nudists of Bethlehem

What! Nudists in Bethlehem! Oh God, nooooooooo!!! Save us from the naked scourge!

Don’t worry, people. There is no nudist camp on the shores of the Hudson River in Selkirk —but for a brief moment last summer, Bethlehem became the center of Capital Region naturism.

I’d created some commercials for the weather featuring actors pretending to be nudists who love watching Bob Kovachick. After all, who better to talk about the importance of weather forecasting than nudists?

To add some realism to the spots, we set them in the mythical Henry Hudson Nudist Camp. It was the quadricentennial after all, so the name was a no-brainer. We shot a photo of the sign at the Henry Hudson Town Park in Bethlehem, and after a little Photoshopping, the town park sign became the nudist camp sign.

But that’s not all. Not content to let the commercials stand on their own, we created a mini-viral media campaign that included a website and Facebook page for the camp complete with photos, events, and even a fictional proprietor,  Wade Gratton.

We even got some press. It didn’t take long for the poop hit the fan.

Former Bethlehem Town Supervisor, Jack Cunningham, started calling, saying we were  “advertising” a nudist camp in his town and that they’d stolen his sign. Ok, we did use the sign, but you know, it’s the people’s sign, not his sign.

As for the nudists, he was concerned that they’d would start showing up at the park and taking their clothes off.  And that would be a problem. Anyway, the short end to this story is that the spots were banned and never seen again.

This is what they call a teachable moment. The lesson? Some crazy ideas are exactly that: crazy.

Watch the spots here; they’re pretty funny!

9 thoughts on “The Nudists of Bethlehem

  1. #3: 12? Are you trying to insult me? You’ve got a lot of nerve coming in here and tossing out cheap shots. I’d say 13 or 14 is more accurate.

  2. rob, they were great. too bad the station or the town didn’t have the stones to air them. Of course, maybe with a male voice they might have passed muster? LOL.

  3. Some mysterious character even noted the “Camp” on one of my blogs. It did create a stir. Several Bethlehem department checked it out. I checked it out. I checked the town departments out.

    Finally a light hit me, and I checked eith the TV station. I got passed around like a bill in Congress. Nobody knew nothing. Eventually someone had clothes enought to connect me to the station manager.

    While he didn’t invite me to the upcoming party at the camp, he did strip away enough sheets to hint that it was some kind of cover-up.

    Being a good boy for once, I’d tell people, when they asked me about it in person, to check the Town Park area out, if they wanted to see more information. After all, if it was on the Bethlehem site, it must be true.

    I don’t think I put anything of my own in print…I’m sorta a type of person.

    Nice promo, Rob!

    How about “opening” a message parlor at old CVS?

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