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F E ATU RE S
Beardtoberfest 2011: a hair-raising event
By Catherine Schurz
Hairy chins and fancy staches can only mean one thing:
On Oct 14, the Blind Tiger bar and concert venue on
Spring Garden Street hosted a good time for a good cause.
Organized by the Beard and Moustache Club of North
Carolina, 100 percent of proceeds from the event went to the
Down Syndrome Network of Greater Greensboro.
"We want to transform the way people see beards," said
Michael Duez, a member of the Beard and Moustache Club.
"We want people to see a man with a beard and say, 'Hey,
that guy is about helping people in the community.'"
The evening consisted of a heated competition for best
facial hair in four categories, as well as performances by
three bands. The Quiet Brace, Another Roadside Attraction,
and Future Ghosts.
The night began with an introduction to the Down
Syndrome Network and their mission, an expression of
gratitude for the audience's attendance, and thanks to the
Beard and Moustache Club for their organized support.
Then the moustache madness ensued with both natural
and styled moustache battles. Men with what looked
like caterpillars beneath their noses took the stage and
the crowd roared in anticipation. Based on a score card
assessing density, length, color, and overall look, the judges
thoughtfully determined a winner.
The crowd also assessed the contestants with their fine
toothed comb and audience response was measured and
considered when awarding the honor of "best moustache."
Next, the styled mustache category drew curlicues,
ringlets, and lots of hair gel to the stage. A winner was
selected and each of the moustache extraordinaires received
a t-shirt as a prize.
Corporate and freestyle beards, otherwise known on the
streets as "groomed" and "wild" beards, were up next for
evaluation. No beard was left unstroked.
Each competitor stepped forward, groping their chin-hair
with mesmerizing technique. In the end, the mighty shrills
from the beard-enthusiast cheerleading section chose the
And then, at last, the highly-anticipated headliner beard
contests were underway, and the best beards of the night
were about to face the steepest critique.
Southern Belle beard contest winner Meghan Spivey 'I I
(center) wore a complete pirate ensemble to secure her place as
first in the competition and in the hearts of the audience.
First the Southern Belle contestants entered the arena,
strutting proudly with the strapped, glued, and fastened
hair dangling from their chins. A row of bearded ladies
stood before the audience, caressing their faux facial hair
and smiling with pride.
It was a Guilford ajumna who won the viewers' vote in
the end. Meghan Spivey '11 curtsied in her pirate ensemble
as her jet black beard and moustache combo flowed from her
face. A clear first-place winner, Spivey surely did not walk
While the Belles exited the stage, the Full Beards marched
on. Locks of gray, red, black, and brown captivated the room
and the MC introduced the eight men one by one.
One man boasted that he hadn't shaved in 14 years and
another did a jig with a tobacco pipe in hand, undoubtedly
appealing to the Irish audience in the bar that night.
Then the champion stepped forth and displayed his
Bawless facial hair for the crowd.
With a quick flick or slow stroke of his mighty beard,
he instantaneously proved to be the superior beard owner.
The density was solid, the length impressive, and the color
a fiery red. The others, though true competitors, were no
match for the hair of this man.
His name? Chris Kelly. Former Guilford student Kelly
showed Greensboro what sustainable hygiene looks like
through the grace of a billowing beard and moustache
magic. Kelly, the official Full Beard Natural contest winner
of 2011, has been bearded for six and a half years with no
intention of shaving in the near future.
"The winner had obviously been working on his beard,"
said Beardtoberfest Judge Cara Craig '06, stylist at Figaro
"I think it's pretty cool how much Guilford College
representation is here tonight," said senior Elisa Valbuena-
Pfau. "And that so many Guilford alumni are directly
involved in helping this cause."
At the end of the night, the long-awaited donation
total was revealed. The extraordinary event raised the
extraordinary gift of more than $550 for the Down Syndrome
Network of Greater Greensboro.
Mesmerized by moustaches? Bewitched by beards? Read
the full version of this article at Guitfordian.com
Students put down roots during agriculture-focused alternative fall break program
By Colleen Gonzalez
Fall break is a chance for students to
unwind from school chaos and forget all the
stress the semester has brought. Some decide'
to travel home while others go to foreign
places. However, there are the select few who
decide to stay behind.
"Rooting Ourselves in Greensboro is a
week-long program that not only involves
volunteering at various places throughout
Greensboro, but also having fun doing
activities," said co-coordinator and Early
College student Patrice Brown in an email
"We wanted students to be able to become
more active members in their community
by getting to know new people as well as
learning about some volunteer locations in
Greensboro," said student coordinator Carla
Restina in an email interview.
The program was started last year by two
Principled Problem Solving scholars and
a Guilford alum as a Principled Problem
Solving project supervised by Project and
Communication Manager Kim Yarbray. It also
gives Guilford students a chance to give back
to the community that has become a second
home to them.
"I did ROIG last year as a freshman," said
sophomore student coordinator Mandy Lu
in an email interview. "I've always enjoyed
doing service and that's why I decided to do
it last year."
While some students decided to participate
for fun, others did it as part of a community
"I needed 40 hours this semester to
fulfill Early College community service
requirements," said Brown. "I participated
in it last year and had a blast, so I knew it
was worth doing again, especially since I was
asked to be a co-coordinator."
The week consisted of six-hour volunteer
jobs done at various places near Guilford and
in the Greensboro area. Such sites include the
Guilford farm, Timberlake Farm, the Edible
around a new plot of land for the Guilford
farm and pulling weeds and gardening at the
library and Timberlake Farm. Despite being
on break from classes, the participants learned
more about nature and how important of a role
our surroundings play here in Greensboro.
"Students staying in Greensboro got to
learn about their surrounding environment
and what kinds of resources are available to
Early College students Gregory Foreman, Jr. and Melissa Nance volunteer at the Guilford
garden.They were among the many students to participate in Rooting Ourselves in Greensboro.
Schoolyard at the Greensboro Children's
Museum and the Kathleen Clay Edwards
"We did many activities, but they were
mostly centered on sustainable agriculture
or food justice," said junior Taylor Seitz in an
Activities consisted of building a fence
them," said Restina. "A lot of our work was
centered on bonding with nature as well
as creating a sense of community through
connecting with other students."
Despite the volunteer work that is done
throughout the week, those who decide to
participate in ROIG were treated to some
good old-fashioned fun.
"We do a lot of community building
activities like game night, bowling night,
movie night and the general get-together at
dinner time," said Lu.
Another added bonus to participating was
that all meals, transportation, activities and
water bottles were free.
Rooting Ourselves in Greensboro was not
only an active way to spend your break
at Guilford, but it offered students an
opportunity to learn new skills, develop an
understanding of their surroundings and
communicate with both students and staff
"I gained a greater appreciation for
sustainable agriculture and food justice," said
Seitz. "I learned to think about where food
comes from and why ... and I honed my field
and garden skills."
"I had a great time having new experiences
and learning about the city I live in now," said
Lu. "It also enabled me to get to know quite a
few people on campus."
There are still places in Greensboro that
have yet to be explored, and these places may
very well be the next stops ROIG makes. Even
in its infancy, ROIG is an opportunity worth
taking. Community is a core value at Guilford,
and a program such as ROIG emphasizes
community between students and Guilford
as well as the connection between Guilford
"I was very excited to be a part of this,
and I'm so glad that I got the opportunity to
enhance my leadership skills and provide a
service-learning opportunity for my peers,"
said Restina. "I feel like I learned a lot about
the environment and history of Greensboro.
In a sense, 'Rooting Ourselves' is a great pun."