Wisconsin is shutting down one of nation's most popular nude beaches, state authorities announced yesterday—but on weekdays only. Nudists from around the country have been traveling to the public beach on the Wisconsin River near Mazomanie, about 25 miles northwest of Madison, for decades as word spread that prosecutors in ultra-liberal Dane County wouldn't go after anyone for showing skin. But visitors haven't stopped at just stripping down. They've been slipping off into the woods for trysts and drugs, and authorities say that's crossing the line.
Their frustration reached a tipping point yesterday, when the state Department of Natural Resources announced it will close the beach, the islands immediately off it, and the surrounding woods to the public on weekdays, when wardens say troublemakers tend to operate unseen. Last summer, wardens issued 19 citations for sex and three for drugs over five or six days of surveillance; 16 citations were issued on weekdays compared with six on weekends. The closures begin immediately.