The San Jose Sharks earned a spot in the Stanley Cup Playoffs again this season—which means things are about to get hairy.
The team is encouraging fans to participate in the annual Beard-a-Thon, a superstition-turned fundraiser to collect money for charity.
Players stop shaving once they make the playoffs and continue to avoid shaving until they are eliminated or win the Stanley Cup. The superstition is believed to have started in the 1980s with the New York Islanders, who did not make the playoffs this season.
Fans are encouraged to join in on the tradition by either participating in the beard-growing event or by pledging a donation to support their friends or favorite team member. And at Cupertino Patch, we want to see your growth, too. If you participate in the Beard-a-Thon, send us a picture of your clean-shaven mug, then keep us updated with photos as your whiskers emerge.
When the Sharks either win the Stanley Cup or are eliminated, we’ll hold a contest and ask voters to decide who grew the best beard.
Folic-ly challenged? That’s OK. Use the Build-a-Beard option on the Sharks’ website and select from a variety of furry additions. (Editor’s note: Though the photo of me attached to this article looks like I’ve got everyone beat already with my facial fuzz, I actually used the Build-a-Beard option myself. I know, I know, it looks so real!)
The donations go to the Sharks Foundation, which gives back to the community through youth and community programs, including a literacy program that touched more than 25,000 students this year.
Team officials said last season's Beard-a-Thon brought in more than $20,000 with more than 600 fans participating.
Those who wish to participate can sign up or make a pledge at www.beardathon.com/sharks. Or you can pledge your Patch editor here: https://www.beardathon.com/sharks/anneernst/profile.aspx
The Sharks first playoff game against St. Louis Blues is Thursday at 4:30 p.m.
—Bay City News Service contributed to this report