SAVE OR SHAVE: Taking part in the fundraiser at Evans Head Beach Kiosk were Cam McClean, Bart Easdown and Kurt Tester.
SAVE OR SHAVE: Taking part in the fundraiser at Evans Head Beach Kiosk were Cam McClean, Bart Easdown and Kurt Tester. Susanna Freymark

Bearded buddies lose the locks for cancer

THREE men. Three beards. Only one would be left standing with his facial hair intact after the money was counted.

Buddies Bart Easdown, Cam McClean and Kurt Tester competed against each other to save their beards. The crazy fundraising push was to raise money for Maya's Retreat in Yass where families living with cancer can seek respite and stay for free.

It was personal for Bart. The retreat was named after his niece Maya who died of cancer before her second birthday.

Still, Bart was nervous about losing his beard.

"I've only been shaved once in the last nine years," the Evans Head Beach Kiosk manager said. "My girlfriend has never seen me without a beard. I share a butt chin with John Travolta."

Cam was keen to keep his beard because as the "baby of the group", the 22-year-old said his beard made him look older and he didn't get asked for identification to prove his age.

"I've had family members go through cancer and when Bart came up with this, it was a no-brainer," Cam said.

Each man had a tin with their bearded face drawn on it. They all work at the beach kiosk and none of them were above a few dirty tricks which included hiding the others' tins or calling customers "mum" to encourage them to donate.

Bart was shocked when his name was called first outside the kiosk.

"I was so sure I was going to win," he said.

Off came the beard.

The men raised $829 and as Kurt was laughing at his beard-less mates, North Coast Holiday Parks manager Adrian Easdown stepped up and offered another $650 if Kurt shaved.

Then a call came in from their mate Boxer who had raised $1479. The total with the raffle came to $3200.



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