Cuddle Parties Put Strangers in Touch

Spooning, rubbing, squeezing -- but not in a sexual way

A bizarre way for strangers to get to know each another is taking hold in the Bay Area.

It's called a Cuddle Party and, yes, it's as weird as it sounds.

Touted as a "playful social event designed for adults to explore communication, boundaries and affection," the Cuddle Parties look a lot like one giant sleepover party for adults.

The trend started in New York but has spread to the Bay Area.

An Oakland gathering proves the touchy-feely event has potential for more than just emotional pleasing.

Hard times have motivated more people to embrace the trend. It has even proven to be a good place to network -- careers have launched in tangle of arms and legs.

It looks and sounds like something kinky could happen but there are rules to keep the cuddlers from going too far. Keep your jammies on, respect your cuddle partners' privacy and shower before you come into one of the parties are on the list of rules before the spooning ensues.

"It's been really interesting because I know people have found work, they've found roomates, they've found furniture." Cuddle lifeguard and co-founder Marcia Baczynski said. "It's almost like a social, in-person version of Craigslist sometimes."

The main rule at the Cuddle Party -- ask before touching. And while the love is free, getting into one of the soothing gatherings will cost you between $20-$40.

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