#7: Streak The Lawn
UVA is known to be a pretty fit campus. Each day, you can see hundreds of students working out or running around Charlottesville. If you want to see some of UVA’s most seasoned runners (and a lot of unseasoned ones too), head to the Rotunda Steps late at night and you are sure to see a runner or two – less their Nike shorts and all other clothing.
Streaking the Lawn at UVA has long been a tradition. According to UVA Magazine, the tradition was started sometime in the 1970s, although streakers had been seen at the University as early as 1937. To commemorate #7 on the bucket list, we gathered the best stories around about peoples’ naked runs down TJ’s beloved Lawn.
“On the night of Halloween last year, I streaked the Lawn with my 2 best girlfriends from UVA and 3 closest guy friends from another school. It was ridiculously late, like 4am. The first go-round was your standard streaking experience: run down the lawn, run around Homer 3 times, “Good Evening Mr. Jefferson,” etc. Only after we had put our clothes back on, we decided that we wanted to streak SOUTH Lawn…….so we proceeded to take off our clothes again and sprint back down the lawn. Now, in order to reach South Lawn you have to go through New Cabell and run down one flight of stairs to reach the back staircase that opens onto South Lawn. Somehow, my two girlfriends and I got separated from our guy friends…so all of us ran through New Cabell (completely naked) but only the three of us made it out onto South Lawn. So the three girls ran down South Lawn, back through New Cabell, then all the way up the Lawn again. It was a TREK. But our guy friends were missing for 15 minutes….turns out they never found South Lawn and got super lost in New Cabell and eventually slowed to a walk. It was so late that janitors had already arrived to start cleaning, and they ran into three of them while they were in New Cabell (butt naked) and eventually asked one of them how to get back to the Rotunda. When they finally got back to their clothes they were completely out of breath and humiliated. It was hilarious!”
“I fell up one of the hill things and have a scar from it now…”
“This summer they redid a lot of construction on the lawn and unfortunately that is pretty hard to see in the dark after a night at Coupe’s. I went with a group of friends and I was running far ahead of the boys so I could just put my clothes on before they got back but in the last leg of my spring I hit a gravel patch and completely ate it. The boys basically had to pick me up and carry me back to my clothes (soooooo embarrassing) and then carry me home. Haven’t done it since…”
“Ski team has done it in the snow on skis.”
“First time I did it was after our parents formal and I slipped and pulled my groin… and there was a huge crowd of people watching (like full stairs). And [anonymous] did it with us but was so slow she came in like 10 minutes later.”
“Two of my first year hallmates streaked the Lawn on the first snowfall of the year. It was an icy snow and they came back with bloody feet!”
“I was hanging out with a lawnie when we saw an odd orange spot floating down the lawn. After 10 or 15 seconds realized it it was some dude streaking the lawn while smoking a cigarette, completely by himself, at like 11pm on a Wednesday.”
“Some of the lawnies were out spotlighting people early one semester. When this one guy got hit, he embraced the situation by reeling around in the direction of the spotlight and performing 30 seconds of Michael Jackson dance moves. He ended by moonwalking his way to the nearest terrace and completing the rest of the streak. He received a pretty hefty round of applause on his way back.”