Ah, January. It’s a brisk time of year for New York. The temperatures are hovering in the low 20s, and people ride the trains bundled up in layers of coats and sweaters. Yet, for one group of fun-loving New Yorkers, January is also the time for the No Pants Subway Ride.
For the last eight years, the instant-comedy group Improv Everywhere has hosted the No Pants Subway Ride in New York City, and this afternoon, unsuspecting straphangers will witness the ninth No Pants Ride. Last year, 1200 people dropped trou on the trains, and even more are expected later today.
So here are the details for this year’s event. For the first time in the history of this voyeuristic event, Improv Everywhere will tackle the outer boroughs. Those who wish to participate should meet at the following locations at 3 p.m.:
Astoria: Meet at Hoyt Playground
Downtown Brooklyn: Meet at Prospect Park
Downtown Manhattan: Meet at Foley Square
Queens: Meet at the Unisphere in Flushing Meadows Park
strong>Uptown Manhattan: Meet at the Great Hill in Central Park
Williamsburg / Bushwick: Meet at Bushwick Park (AKA Maria Hernandez Park)
The event will culminate in a pants-less gather at Union Square shortly after. At around 4 p.m., the Union Square area should be teeming with too many people wearing only underwear and exiting the subway.
I won’t be participating this year. Two years ago, I joined my one and only No Pants Subway Ride at a time when around 900 other people joined me. At that point, enough New Yorkers didn’t know what was happening for the ride to be a gimmicky and funny and novel. Now, though, at least 1500 people will arrive, and nearly everyone is expecting someone to take his or her pants off this afternoon.
If you’re riding the rails and see it happening, enjoy the absurdity. If you’re participating, good luck. For the rest of us who may just be trying to get from Poitnt A to Point B, well, good luck with that too.