No Pants Subway Ride 2012 New York Reports

UPDATE: The video is up! See the full report and watch it here.

Photo by Ari Scott

The 11th Annual No Pants Subway Ride took place today in New York in mild 44 degree weather. Nearly 4,000 riders met at meeting points spread out all over the city and converged on Union Square. The event also happened in 59 other cities in 27 countries around the world. Thanks so much to all who participated!

Links to photos from our official photographers are below along with the official video.

Be sure to sign up for our mailing list so you’ll stay updated on future events like this. You can also like us on Facebook, follow us on twitter and subscribe to our YouTube channel.

David Bledsoe’s photos [Central Park / 1 Train]
Gabriel Chai’s photos [Bushwick / L Train]
Ilya Chigirev’s photos [Flushing / 7 Train]
Santiago Felipe’s photos [Buswick / L Train]
Brian Fountain’s photos [Brooklyn / R Train]
Chuck Lau’s photos [Central Park / C Train]
Lenny Rosmarin’s photos [Downtown – 6 train]
Arin Sang-urai’s photos [Downtown – N Train]
Cecilia Senocak’s photos [Astoria / N Train]
Ari Scott’s photos [Astoria / N Train]
Agent Khari Shiver’s photos [Brooklyn / R Train]
Katie Sokoler’s photos [Downtown / 1 Train]

The story of the first No Pants Subway Ride in 2002 in New York City:

Check out the complete history of The No Pants! Subway Ride with videos of past years.

Get the official 2012 No Pants Subway Ride t-shirt:

No Pants Subway Ride 2012 Generals:
(top L-R) Cody Lindquist, Matt Shafeek, Zach Linder, Dave Eng, Jaime Linn
(bottom L-R) Alex Scordelis, Jesse Good, Charlie Todd, Jamey Shafer, Lauren Reeves
Photo by Brian Fountain


  1. I was on the E train in car 5. It was awesome.

    The only black mark on my day was when I was leaving Union Sq to return home: upon entering the station, a group of police officers stationed at a table (that had a sign announcing that large bags were subject to search) told me I had to put my pants back on to enter the system. I can maybe-sorta understand briefs, as they are clearly underwear – but boxers? Boxer-briefs? They could pass for shorts! Are they going to stop letting us wear shorts on the subway? When a fellow NPSRer asked the officers what law they were enforcing, she was told that since the transit system was private property, it was subject to its own rules.
    I call bull.

    • I saw that table, Esther; they harassed some other guy for not having on pants, too. What made it annoying is that a whole crowd of us were walking past the table with no pants, and there were others who were going into the station dressed the same way.

      My day was really good, though. Today was my 50th birthday and I woke up feeling sad because my fiancé lives several states away. However, I looked on Newyorkology this morning and saw that today was the No Pants Ride! I’ve always wanted to go (I went to one of the early MP3 Experiments and am on the mailing list, but something always seems to come up or I miss the emails until too late) and I decided this was the perfect way to spend my birthday.

      As it happened, I ran into some old friends when I showed up at Foley Square, and we ended up riding together. At one point we were near Bryant Park and a couple of us were using the bathrooms there while the rest of our mini-group waited. I pretended to be a tourist who was lost and went up to one of my traveling buddies while a woman gave us the eye; it’s obvious she thought we were crazy. I acted confused and asked for directions to Union Square, and said I was in NYC for the first time and that I wanted them to take a picture of me so I could send it to my boyfriend to document my trip. My acquaintance looked at me oddly and said, ‘Don’t you feel strange?’ I asked why and he took a beat before replying, ‘Because you’re in New York all alone!’ It took everything for me to keep from cracking up. The woman watching us just stared in disbelief.

      Later I left my friends and went to the after party at the Greenwich Village Country Club. It was fantastic to be dancing in a room full of people not wearing pants. The only way I can describe it is that it was like a combination of the movies Caddyshack and the Pink Panther.

      Thank you to all of the wonderful people I met along the way, including those who serenaded me (sans pants) on the subway platform! You really made this a special birthday!

  2. So my car was mostly first-time participants, which was awesome, but they were unsure about how to react to questions. Hence when two gentlemen were getting a little bit loud about asking what was up with the no-pants and people ignored them, I had to hop in.

    I slid up towards them and before they could say anything to me, I asked them “What’s up with all the people wearing pants today? Is this some promotion? Do you guys work for Levis or something?” We had a small conversation about which one of us was crazy and whether or not it was normal to wear pants in public. I’m pretty sure that for at least a moment, I had them not entirely sure. Mission accomplished.

    Huge congrats and thanks to all the 6-train car captains who stepped up and helped to keep things organized. Aside from the confusion of whether or not to get on the first train before everyone was on the platform, I’d say that things went perfectly. Well done to all!

    • Yeah, next year I’ve got a note to make it clear: just get on the train if your whole group is there. If not, wait. Don’t worry about the other cars.

  3. Hey, aren’t there any pics from the Bushwick/Williamsburg group? The L train? Anyone? If there are no pictures from that line then screw it- next year I will bust out my own camera. Not following that rule again…

      • Thanks! Sorry- I’m too impatient… I just want proof of my participation!! Lol!

        One of the reasons I love NYC is that it’s easy to be anonymous, so doing something that draws attention to myself in this way was a little nerve-wracking. I felt nothing at first but then there were moments I felt enormously self-conscious and had to resist the urge to frantically put my pants back on. All-in-all it was fun though and I’m glad I did it. I met some really cool people and I was able to just let go for a little while. I also really enjoyed seeing people’s reactions, which in NYC is pretty much a non-reaction, but it’s fun to watch people try to suppress their confusion. :)

  4. This was my third year; first year as a car leader (car #4 on the N train).

    Fun memories:

    We all de-pantsed at the same time as a big happy family. In past years, we would wait until the stop before our assigned stop to actually de-pants. Doing it gradually, strap-hangers would first be shocked by one, then two, then four, then more, people de-pants-ing. That way, we could pretend to also be shocked and confused along with them — until the next stop when it became our turn. This year, it was a group de-panting. There was a little awkward moment when the doors closed and people in my group looked to me for guidance. Like, “are we really doing this now?” So I removed my pants before taking of my shoes. Awkwardness. I did not notice anybody commenting on the pantsless cult in the train. I assume everybody was too shocked or too blasé to say anything.

    After arriving safely and bare-legged at Union Square station, I took a little side trip on my own. I boarded a 6 downtown express, and found that I was the only pantless rider in that particular car. A couple people may have glanced at my legs, but New Yorkers are far too polite to point or stare. At one station stop, a man walked past the open door on the platform and as we met each other’s eyes, we both noticed the other had no pants on, and he gave a thumbs up. I grinned conspiratorially back. Then later, while walking through a stairwell on the way back uptown, a nice young woman stopped me for a photo with her. She would have joined in today, but could not. Next year!

    I am off to look through all the photo albums! We did it!

  5. The 1 train crew from Foley sq was the best where are the pics though i was the guy with the white hat and the WTF is that glasses. Group 10 1 train.

    THe best part was on the train, there was an older couple on the first train and the guys Like ” What the hell Going on today, These kids done lost they Mind”. Then on second train was and older couple that had 21 questions. this was the Best year to date. Next year Im meeting in Queens . P.S the after party was on point

  6. This was my first year and it was awesome, I was scared for no reason, my best reaction was at 42 street. I was walking from the C train to the N train and there was a christian lady handing out pamphlets and she yelled and me and my sisters to repent.

  7. I had a blast participating in this. I wanted to do this last year, but my partner in crime ended up getting sick the day off and we decided to call it off. I was on the 1 train from Central Park.

    I had two memorable reactions. One u guy on the subway walked away from the group of de-pants-ers clearly annoyed and muttering something along the lines of “there’s a bunch of crazies on this train” The other was when we were walking up the steps to Union Square and there was a lady who appeared to be distraught about the subway being packed and she said “bunch of a**h**** in this place” to which I replied “quite literally!”

    I found a picture of my brother, our friend and I featured on channel ABC7 6pm and 11pm news. I’m in a black leather jacket, blue scarf, brown messenger bag and superman underwear. If anyone has that video, I’d love to see it! Thanks!

  8. I was lucky enough to be with one of the youngest participants of the No Pants Subway Ride! My friend brought her family which included her 10 month old son! This was my 3rd No Pants ride, and it never fails to amuse. :)

    We joined the meetup in Lower Manhattan’s Foley Square and joined the “1” group on the 6 Train with Improv Everywhere’s Charlie Todd. We rode the uptown 6 to 59th Street (depantsing at 42nd Street Grand Central) before transferring to the downtown R to Union Square.

    My No Pants 2012 Flickr set is here:
    Gothamist posted a few of my shots (including a cute image of mother/ son) here:

    Looking forward to next year!

  9. only 11 photos from the downtown 6 train? really?! i thought more were coming soon :(

    regardless, it was a total blast, i loved my group… 3rd year doing pantsless, and this year i was finally brave enough to go first! so many good memories

  10. This is disgusting. This lends nothing positive to women and it just makes them all look like a piece of meat. Don’t we have enough sexually-related problems in our society? shame on the trash mothers who took their kids to this.
    I’m not a religious person..but I’m a decent person, and I think this is appalling and so extremely anti-feminist. Like attention whores need another excuse to parade themselves naked on the streets of nyc.

  11. When I found out about this event about 2 weeks ago I knew it was something I wanted to do at least once in my life. A couple of my friends and my parents thought it really stupid but I still wanted to do it and don’t really care what they thought about it. Life is too hard, serious and full of stressful problems most of the time, sometimes we need to do silly things just for fun and to help us lighten up at least for a little while. Since I live in Queens I went to IE meetup in Flushing Meadow Park, volunteer to be one of the 10 group leaders, I was #4, so my group got on the 4th car of the 7 train. Rode on 7 train and watched all the people in my group depant. I made a mistake and took off my pants one stop before I should have because I hadn’t realized there was still a couple left that hadn’t depanted yet, but at least I got off the right stop. Got off my stop after depanting and got on the next 7 train where the rest of the group already were. Got off on Grand Central Station to change to 4/5 or 6 train, there met with some of my group members. Took express 5 train to Union Square Station and waited for local 6 train to arrive before exiting station and headed to Union Square with the rest of the groups to join the happy pant-less mob already assembled there. Stayed there about an hour people gazing, taking video clips and took the no pants survey. Then went to Starbuck’s on 15th Street and ordered coffee while pant-less. When my friend Patrick arrived to pick me up, he took a few pictures of me there, then we decided to go eat something so I put on my pants. We went to Chipote’s on 14th Street and discovered more than half the people there were pant-less. Got about 3 pictures from there. Wondering how I can share the pictures I got and video (of the video clips I put together), is there an email I can use to submit them or should I just share the link to them here? Haven’t spotted any pictures of me while pant-less. I think it’s because I didn’t look naked enough, was wearing black pantyhose and 3/4 length leather coat, so that didn’t appeal to photogs. There were too many other women showing lots of butt-cheek and leg skin available for photos. :-D