If men in Chandler turn up unshaven this spring, don't assume those whiskers are a sign the guy's too lazy to shave.
Those patches of facial hair could actually reveal a guy's ambitions to win a beard-growing contest for the city's centennial celebration.
The city's Whiskerino contest is a nod to men's fashions when Chandler was incorporated in 1912 by its bearded founder, Dr. A.J. Chandler.
The contest idea came when centennial organizers were researching archives and discovered the same thing had been done for the city's 50th and 75th anniversaries, said Hermelinda Llamas, a special events coordinator.
"We thought, why not?" Llamas said. "If they did it at the previous ones, why not continue with the 100th. It already had been established."
For this contest, the city is seeking teams of three men to step forward by Feb. 7, when they must show up at City Hall with a clean-shaven face; contestants will start the competition from scratch. They'll be photographed for proof, and will come back on May 19 to show off their bushy accomplishments.
Competitors will be judged in several categories, including length and fullness. A creative manliness category will judge the men on shape, design and even color if men want to get really bold.
Chandler will likely have some barbers and perhaps an artist serve as judges, Llamas said. No contestants have signed up yet but the city has fielded calls from several interested men, Llamas said. The city hopes for at least a handful of teams to form and start growing beards.
"It's a fun off-the-wall contest and I'm curious to see if there's any men who have the courage to do it," Llamas said.
Limited research into the previous contests revealed photos of unidentified men and only short descriptions of the events, said centennial coordinator Jean Reynolds.
"They were recruiting any man they could find for the beard-growing contest," Reynolds said. "They were doing this thing where they would put people in jail if they didn't do the beard-growing contest, as sort of a joke."
For contest rules and judging categories, go to www.chandler100th.com and click on the contests link.
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