Editor's Note: This article was written and used for the Dartmouth/Clarkson-St. Lawrence Game Program this past weekend at Thompson Arena.
You can’t see it from your seat, but the team is bonding before your very eyes. The 26 young men who are responsible for maintaining the tradition of this century-old program are coming together as a team every minute of every day of every week… of November.
In hockey circles (at least amongst the men’s teams), the 11th month of the calendar year is one for heinous mustaches, playful teasing among teammates and a surprisingly high amount of self-satisfaction in the growth of what are usually categorized as upper-lip eyesores.
However, it is all done in good fun and for a great cause.
The annual ‘Movember’ campaign is done to help raise both awareness and funds for men’s health issues that include prostate and testicular cancer and diseases that affect mental health.
Like it has in the past, the Big Green have set up a website that tracks donations raised by teams from across the country who are involved in the movement. No stranger to competition, these student-athletes are not only trying to best their own teammates in terms of fundraising, but also other programs who are standing up in the fight against these illnesses.
“Participating in ‘Movember’ is a fun and easy way for the team to raise awareness for men’s health issues. It also brings the guys together because everybody is taking part, giving us all another goal to strive toward as a group,” junior Charlie Mosey said.
“Although most of the team looks pretty goofy with moustaches, it’s a simple way to raise men's prostate cancer awareness, and we enjoy being a part of it.”
The cause is an important one that each player is dedicated to helping support. The beauty of ‘Movember’ is that it is an effortless way to not only raise awareness, but to come together as a unit without the traditional team-building exercises.
“This is a great way to shed light on things like prostate cancer knowledge, in a fun and visible manner by growing moustaches for the entire month of November,” junior winger Jesse Beamish remarked. “Our team will all forgo shaving for the month, and it will be a lot of fun seeing who looks the best and worst with a hefty ‘flavor savor’ on our upper lips.
“As annoying as it may be for some to put away the razor, it is a lot of fun to do with a team, and is a great way to support awareness for prostate and other types of cancer. I can't wait to see who will come out on top with some of the ugliest moustaches in years,” Beamish continued.
According to Mosey, Beamish won’t have to look very far, but just into the mirror each morning.
“One of the best, but worst returning moustaches belongs to Jesse Beamish. He looks like Super Mario,” Mosey said without hesitation. “Other guys like Geoff Ferguson, Andy Simpson and Brett Patterson like to get creative with their facial hair and grow out handle bars.
“It's pretty funny to see some of the guys who can't grow any, so they dye it in the hopes it will stand out more.”
So don’t be fooled as you sit there in your seats tonight. The team is coming together before you. And maybe you should feel lucky to bare witness to such a noble cause completely organized by the players each year as they stand up together in the fight against cancer.
But you should also feel lucky that distance, glass and facemasks obscure your view, because, honestly, the guys look terrible for the entire month… for a great cause, though.
For more information on the ‘Movember’ campaign or to follow the progress of the team, please visit: “moteam.co/dartmouth-hockey”.
by Pat Salvas