These two bearded dudes walk into a bar

 Battle of the beards in Somerville
By CARRIE BATTAN  |  February 19, 2010
PHOTOS:" Get Your Beard On Saturday" slideshow, by Jenell Randall
Ever wonder what the world would be like if growing facial hair were a professional sport? Yeah, me neither. But someone in Somerville did at one point in time and got really excited about it, and Saturday's masculinity-wagging "Get Your Beard On" contest was born.

The boisterous afternoon competition filled the back room of Union Square's Precinct Bar with an endless and startlingly diverse horde of beard fanatics. A handful of Somerville's bearded Sikh community competed for the "Best Natural Full Beard" crown and post-pubescent men of all shapes and sizes brandished their manicured mugs to see who sported the best "Free-Style Full Beard" and "Free-Style Mustache." Cue stream of jokes about "hairline fractures"  and "how-long-you-been-growing-that-thing-and-do-you-use-wax" commentary from emcee Jimmy DelPonte, amid envious spectators' coos of "That's SO long for only two months."
And in an effort to get everyone in on the furry lovefest (ewwww), a "Best Fake Beard" category was created for beard-impaired men and gender-bending women. Fun for the whole family! But the most promising sign for the future of beard crown conquests was a clutch of young boys cheering on contestants, gazing into their metaphorical crystal balls to gauge what beard-growing adventures await them somewhere down the line -- clearly being groomed for Get Your Beard On '20.
If you missed GYBO and you're itching to get in on some other hirsute scrum, you won't have to wait long. 826 Boston's annual Moustache-A-Thon fundraiser kicked off this Monday, with the first official weigh-in slated for February 24 at the Other Side Cafe. Grow forth and conquer, people.
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