Mayor, cops sport scruff for No Shave November
Yes, Mayor Scott Avedisian hasn’t shaved.
Yes, he’s growing a beard.
No, he’s not going to keep it.
No, it has nothing to do with losing a bet.
Yes, he’s doing it for a cause.
And yes, he’s not the only one who has given up shaving for the month of November.
Warwick Police are likewise giving the money they would spend on shaving to help children with cancer. The effort, Cops for Kids with Cancer, had a goal of raising $3,000 in Warwick. Avedisian said $5,000 has already been raised, even though the month is young.
To pull it off – or should we say, to let it grow – Police Chief Col. Stephen McCartney waived the regulation prohibiting officers from growing facial hair. Not only did the force take up the cause, but members of the administration, including the mayor, joined in. Chief of staff Ray Studley is a part of it, although his reddish fuzz gives him a sunburned look, strikingly different than the snowy whiskers lining the mayor’s chin.
What, no white beard?
“I haven’t been working in Warwick that long,” Studley offered.
Avedisian hasn’t found anything to like about not shaving. He finds the growth prickly and itchy. He hasn’t given up shaving entirely. He’s shaved his neck and under his chin, which is a bit of a pain.
“It’s so much easier to take everything off,” he said.
Actually, he plans to do that a few days prior to the end of the month. He would have waited, however, Avedisian is appearing in a commercial for the New England Institute of Technology being taped later this month. He aims to be clean-shaven for the posterity of video.
Cops for Kids with Cancer began as a rivalry between a Boston police golf team and members of an Irish team in 2000. That small group decided the funds they raised should go to a local hospital to help children with cancer. Since then, the nonprofit organization has grown, helping more than 480 families in the New England region with more than $2.4 million in assistance.
In an email responding to questions, Col. Stephen McCartney said, “We are calling it ‘No Shave November.’”
The chief said he would join the ranks of the “no shavers” after making a speech at the State House tomorrow in honor of the Marine Corps birthday. McCartney served as a Marine.
“I will be in my dress blue uniform [USMC grooming regulations are very strict even for retired members like myself if I am in uniform]. After that I will not shave until the end of the month out of respect to all the officers who are participating in the activity.”
McCartney said police grooming regulations would go back into effect – “no beards” – on Dec. 1.