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Hair razing contest warms spirits
at PWL Heritage House

Jan 4th, 2018

Early in the fall Chris Elgie, the maintenance contractor at Points West Living Heritage House in Vegreville, decided to be a pirate for Hallowe’en. To add authenticity to the pirate look, Chris let his hair and beard grow. When he didn’t get a trim by early November, the questions began. And when one resident started calling him her ‘Woolly Bear’, Chris came up with a plan.

Shave the date

He turned the residents’ guessing game about his beard into a fun contest. Chris went around to residents and got them to enter a date, on which, if chosen in a draw, he would be compelled to shear off his locks. They could choose any date over a two month period, from December 1 to January 31.

More than sixty ballots came in by the time Chris and recreation coordinator Kathy Sawchuk drew the winning entry, which set the date at December 28. Two residents and one care partner had chosen that date, so they had the privilege of wielding the razor when the date rolled around.

Wearing a brave smile and a garbage bag

The event drew quite a crowd. Chris sat at the front wearing a brave smile and an industrial garbage bag for a hair cutting cloak. First up was resident Cliff Windels (pictured above) who, fortunately for Chris, has some experience in grooming a well-tended beard. Next was resident Olga Semotiuk, whom Chris trusted with clean-shaving his upper lip.

A little nervous

“Chris looked a little nervous when they were trimming his beard, but fortunately, there were no nicks!” says General Manager Alexis Bauer. “The residents watching were laughing hysterically as clumps of his hair from his face and his head fell to the floor.” Alexis says Chris always leaves facial hair “to keep him warm in the winter.” He certainly warmed spirits with this hair-razing contest.

Non-pirate prizes

And just in case getting to shave a pirate wasn't enough, the three winners also won prizes. Cliff won a fruit and nut tray, Olga won a Hickory Farms basket, and care partner Lorelei Lloyd, who was unable to attend the haircut, won a throw blanket.

Photo: Resident Cliff Windels gets the first pass on Chris Elgie’s overgrown beard at the December 28 conclusion of the ‘name the shave date’ contest at PWL Heritage House in Vegreville.

More photos at Flickr: Hair razing contest warms spirits at PWL Heritage House

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