It’s November, when the leaves have just about all fallen from the trees, the evenings are getting noticeably longer and chillier, and scores of men put away their razor for a good cause.
And that means “Movember” is here once again — a month when some mens’ upper lips get fuzzier while awareness about prostate cancer is raised, and locally, funds are donated to Richmond Hospital’s urology department, thanks to the annual Richmond Moustache Challenge.
In its second year, a group of notable locals will take part in the event, doing their best to grow facial hair over the next 30 days.
Up for the challenge are: Gary Hollick, publisher of the Richmond News; Jason Roberts, Lansdowne Centre’s general manager; Tim Wilkinson, deputy chief with Richmond Fire-Rescue; Dr. Ken Poon of the Richmond Hospital’s urology department; and Matt Pitcairn, manager of communication and policy at Richmond Chamber of Commerce.
For a minimum $5 donation, the public can vote for their favourite competitor by visiting the Richmond Moustache Challenge website at lansdowne-centre.com/movember/.
Weekly updates with progress photos will be posted on Lansdowne Centre’s website and published weekly in the Richmond News.
While Movember — which was originated in Australia back in 2004 — has its lighthearted side, it also has deep meaning.
For Richnond Fire-Rescue’s Wilkinson it’s a subject close to his heart since his father battled through prostate cancer.
As for how he intends to compete, Wilkinson said, “I’ll be fertilizing it, for sure. Some say I can almost grow a moustache overnight.”
Lansdowne Centre’s Roberts said he was relying on his English and Scottish heritage to help sprout some hair, which he concedes is not a big hit with his wife.
The defending champion from last year is the chamber’s Pitcairn who has considerable experience in the competition. This is his seventh year of Movember ’stache growing.
Pitcairn said he is giving himself a handicap this time by shaving his pre-existing facial hair a couple of days into the competition.
He’s keeping his growth for engagement photos this weekend and plans to remove it Sunday. “Lucky for me, and my hairy genes, it grows in pretty quickly, so that by about the middle of the month I’m a Burt Reynolds or Tom Selleck.”
On a more serious note, Pitcairn said he takes part because cancer has touched his family and friends on numerous occasions.
When posing for the competitors’ photo, News’ publisher Hollick said last year’s champ, Pitcairn, should be allowed to retain his current moustache, “because that little baby face is going to need all the help it can get.”
Hollick added he’s no stranger to a “good ’stache” and this year he hopes Richmondites, “get behind supporting this great cause.”
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