Festival encourages No-Shave November

Beards. Whether they be “full,” “old Dutch,” “chinstrap,” “goatee” or “Van Dyke,” beards have become the norm during the month of November as the popularity of No-Shave November continues. This time around, however, area residents who participate in the social event will be able to garner more recognition for their facial hair by competing in the newly formed Great Ozarkan Beard Off (GOBO).

GOBO, which was founded and organized by former MSSU employee Hillary Fogerty, is a competitive facial hair festival held in Eureka Springs, Ark., that will feature over a dozen beard and mustache contests and events from Nov. 29 through Dec. 1.

The overall goal of this new festival is to raise awareness for men’s health issues, as well as to raise money for the Arkansas Prostate Cancer Foundation.

“Celebrating men’s facial hair, and the bonding over facial hair as a rite of passage among men, is a fun way to raise money for and awareness about men’s health issues,” said Fogerty in a recent press release. “Many people don’t know that one in six American men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetimes.”

In addition to the facial hair contests, the festival will feature musical performances, a beard parade, a beer garden highlighting event co-sponsor Mother’s Brewing Company’s rare and seasonal brews and holiday shopping specials for bearded participants and their significant others. According to Fogerty, one of the competition categories GOBO will be hosting is “Most Bearded Campus in the Ozarks,” a contest she claimed was created with one specific campus in mind.

“I thought of [Southern] when I designed the contest, and when I wrote the rules for it. It seemed to me a fun way to get Southern’s name out and about—and in a positive manner,” said Fogerty. “MoSo could make a great showing. In fact, when I ran into linemen from our football team … I became even more certain that Southern would win.”

The college campus with the most registered participants in the contest will be declared winner of the Most Bearded Campus award. According to GOBO, any campus group that enters the contest must submit a group photo of all their bearded male participants, along with a list of their names and a suggested $5 donation per beard to (www.GOBOeureka.com,) at the bottom of the Contest Information page. Any other group interested in entering is encouraged to visit GOBO’s official website for more details.

“It’s around Thanksgiving, so I’m not really sure what my plans are, but if I’m free, I’m going to go for sure,” said the bearded William Flores, junior marketing and

international business major.