Times Square has many iconic features: the Coca-Cola advertisement, Broadway show billboards, the New Year’s Eve Ball, and… a man wearing only underwear, a cowboy hat, and a pair of cowboy boots.
Ladies and Gentlemen, meet The Naked Cowboy!
The Naked Cowboy was born Robert John Burck on December 23, 1970. He started off his performing career as a busker in Venice Beach, California.
He ditched his clothes when a friend suggested that he might have higher earnings if he performed in his underwear. He gave it a try on Christmas Day 1997, and a (mostly naked) star was born!
The Naked Cowboy moved to New York a year later, and he has been a fixture in Times Square since.
Rain, shine, sleet, or snow, you can almost always find him, singing and taking photos with tourists. Though he is mainly based in Times Square, The Naked Cowboy also makes appearances all over the world.
Where to find the Naked Cowboy
Finding the Naked Cowboy is pretty easy as his range is limited mostly to Times Square. He is often found on an island created at the intersection of 7th Ave and Broadway (map).
Broadway is now pedestrian-only, so look for him on Broadway between 44th and 45th Streets. This is the best place to look first.
He will roam about the area looking for guests to entertain.
Burck holds a degree in Political Science from The University of Cincinnati.
The Naked Cowboy is a registered marriage officiant. You can be married in Times Square by The Naked Cowboy.
The Naked Cowboy has, until very recently, worn traditional white briefs. However, he is now officially sponsored by Fruit of the Loom and wears their boxer-briefs.
In 2010, The Naked Cowboy landed his biggest endorsement deal yet with Blue Island Shellfish Farms. They now harvest “Naked Cowboy Oysters” from Long Island Sound and are distributed to fine-dining establishments all over the world.
Burck ran for Mayor of New York in 2009 against Michael Bloomberg. He withdrew before the election. Check out his campaign video.
On September 29, 2010, Burck announced that he would challenge Barack Obama in the 2012 Presidential election as a Tea Party candidate.
The Naked Cowboy is a trademarked image. Burck owns the rights to The Naked Cowboy, and he sued Mars, Inc. for dressing an M&M as The Naked Cowboy in an advertisement.
The Naked Cowboy has been the Grand Marshal of the New York City Underwear Run.
The Naked Cowboy has appeared on many different television shows, including Law & Order, Howard Stern and The Apprentice.
The Naked Cowboy has recently self-published a book called “Determination: The Legend of the Naked Cowboy.”
On February 15, 2013, Burck married Patricia Cruz, a professional belly dancer and Group Fitness instructor. She travels with Burck as the official Naked Cowgirl.
If are considering a career change, you can contact The Naked Cowboy’s at his official website www.nakedcowboy.com about buying the rights to operate as a Naked Cowboy franchise!
Stephen is the CEO of Free Tours by Foot and has overseen the transformation of a local walking tour company into a global tour community and traveler’s advice platform. He has personally led thousands of group tours in the US and Europe, and is an expert in trip planning and sightseeing, with a focus on budget travelers.
Stephen has been published and featured in dozens of publications including The Wall Street Journal, BBC, Yahoo, Washington.org, and more.