The 8th NATCON which took place in the weekend of Friday 3 May to Sunday 5 May 2019 was packed with action - if you wanted to join in. It was also great place to just hang around if you should decide to drop out from the planned schedule. The 125 naturists who participated in this year's convention came from 23 different countries. The wide spread participation has earned the anual NATCON conference its nickname "United Nations of Naturists". The Thais and the highly energized Indians formed as usual the majority, but this year there was a great contingent of Australians and New Zealanders.
The NAT-games were this year organized by Raz. That made a big difference. Not only were the games great fun but the flow of participants from one activity to the other was also very smooth. Very few stations saw the next team waiting in line for the current team to finish their task. It also made a big difference in the calculation of the winning team. Previously, winning the NAT-Games looked more like a lucky draw, but oh no, not this year! There were Score Cards and color coded stickers to be earned and bonus points to be counted for the fine tuning. Which together added a whole new competitive dimension without destroying the nature of the still mostly-for-the-fun games.
The NAT-Games certainly proved - should anybody ever have been in doubt - the truth in the old saying that: "Naturists stay childish longer!" How else can you explain the enthusiasm displayed by six teams of middle aged to senior people blowing little yellow rubber ducks across the pool and back again to the shore where duck daddy was anxiously waiting? Or the fearlessness of the teams doing the Around Australia race in a flimsy swan paddle boat?
The location was this year Canal Garden Resort, a low-rise, sprawling resort along the winding banks of the river flowing down from the Kaeng Krachan reservoir west of the city of Petchburi in Thailand. The 40 bungalows for couples and the 2 large dormitory for the singles were more comfortable than anywhere the NATCON has ever been held before. For the staff, hosting our extremely international group from around the world was kind of an eye-opener. Never before had they seen 70+ year old guests take the zipline accross the lake. Oh, yes, and never before had the security staff strapped so many naked people into the harness to take them on the ride. They never blinked an eye - but they will have a story to tell for a long time. Clearly, the resort management had held several meetings with the staff prior to our arrival and they were all extremely professional.
The party on the first night of NATCON is traditionally the most lively night with dancing till late as the participants arrive in a great mood for partying. The second night, we are usually too tired to do more than sit and chat and enjoy a cold beer in the tropical night. Not so this year! Thanks to Peter Smith's experienced hand on the music, also the Saturday night party saw this year people dancing late into the evening. Peter is an Australian and has years of experience from handling the music at Sunseekers Nudist Club near Perth. He handpicked each single track from what he saw was appreciated on the dance floor. And when we just couldn't dance anymore and had to sit down .. two numbers later we couldn't resist his temptation and had to get back up on the floor!
The seminar on Saturday morning is the convention part of NATCON. The session was this year about creating ASIANAT and the proceedings were all arranged by Muthu. However, due to a last minute cancellation by the head of the Indian Naturists, Satish, he had to sit on the panel himself representing India - while leaving the moderation to Raz. You can read about the session here.
The location and date for next NATCON has still to be picked - but if a vote was taken among the participants this year, we will most likely come back for at least one more great conference at Canal Garden Resort.
More photos from 8th NATCON 2019 here. You must be logged in to enjoy 🙂