Get Hairy with the Fredericksburg, VA Beard Coalition
By LEIGH HOOVER
When the subject of beards comes up in conversation, it is rarely in regards to benefitting the community. However, it is the connection of these seemingly unrelated topics that makes one local organization stand out amongst others in the city of Fredericksburg. Open to cultivators and appreciators of facial hair alike, the members of the Fredericksburg Beard Coalition (FXBC) managed to turn this common interest into a force of good.
Since its inception in June 2013, FXBC worked with a variety of groups and for a myriad of different causes, such as Bully Paws, several cancer foundations and even the Special Olympics. Members also hold and participate in beard competitions for charity. The group raised close to $18,000 in total thus far, with no intention of stopping there. FXBC is involved with the upcoming Pink Heals Color Rush, a 5k fun run being held on September 13.
FXBC’s contributions to charity organizations goes beyond the Fredericksburg city limits, and their impact continues to be an unwaveringly positive one. As FXBC Vice President Shannon Sullivan said, “We really try to help in any way that we can.”
The group itself is friendly and inclusive, and makes a point of holding monthly meetings at local bars and pubs as a way to support the Fredericksburg economy, while also having a good time. There are no special requirements to join, other than a willingness to serve the local community and at least a vague affinity for facial hair.
Beard, goatee and mustache cultivators can hit the road with the FXBC and enter various facial hair contests throughout the nation. The group also hosts competitions of their own. These events serve to raise the profile of the FXBC in addition to raising funds for charity.
Despite the fact that the Fredericksburg Beard Coalition has been around for little over a year, they managed to establish themselves as an exceedingly benevolent presence in the community. Perhaps more people of Fredericksburg should make it a goal for the day to “hug a bearded man.”