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Little shavers

Locals brave baldness for cancer cure
By: Lauren Weber, The Press-Tribune
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Being bald never seemed as appealing as it did than during last week's St. Baldrick's Foundation events. Strands of hair covered the stage floors of two Granite Bay schools as more than 30 students, teachers, parents and principals shaved their heads to raise money for St. Baldrick's, a childhood cancer research foundation. Greenhills Elementary School third-grade teacher Eric Lee, with his bushel of dark brown hair, was just one of the 10 heads that was shaved at the school-wide assembly March 28. This was the first year Greenhills took a more hands-on approach to raising funds for St. Baldrick's and the school's fundraising goal of $2,000 was exceeded by $1,000. For Greenhills third-grader Derek Byam, the reason for shaving his head was simple. To help kids with cancer, he said. Although he admitted to being a little nervous about being shaved in front of the school, he knew it was for a good cause. It's all about raising awareness, Lee said. Through the school-wide effort, Lee explained to his class why he chose to be a shavee and opened their eyes about cancer. But the fact that Lee would soon have no hair excited the students. The students were thrilled. They just want to see me bald, Lee said. Lee saw the St. Baldrick's event as an opportunity to take a different approach to educating kids. We want to hit the other side of educating the child, Lee said. To have an impact on the kids “ that's why I'm here. Greenhills principal Peter Towne grew a beard for the event, since his balding head would be an anti-climactic shave, he said. Towne took a seat and faced the razor sitting on stage next to the kids. After the students' heads had been shaved at Friday afternoon's event, the curtains closed and the assembly seemed to be coming to a halt, but with nine shaved heads, one was missing: Lee. The audience chanted Mr. Lee in unison as the anticipation grew. The curtains opened again and Lee was in the chair, waiting to see his hair fall to the floor. It took just a few minutes and then it was over “ Lee, Towne and eight students showed off their new hairdos for school and community members to see. Eureka School in Granite Bay also held a St. Baldrick's event, with kids from surrounding schools braving baldness. Joey Scotti, a fourth-grader at Eureka School, grew his hair out for a full year and raised more than $500 individually for St. Baldrick's. Because this wasn't his first St. Baldrick's head shaving, but his third, he offered advice to fellow shavees. A bunch of people at school try to rub your head so you might want to wear a beanie, he said. Scotti was among more than 20 other students who took a seat on stage while hairstylists at Essentials Spa Salon in Granite Bay worked their head-shaving magic. Jenni and Trevor Sanders of Granite Bay organized the Eureka School event and have organized St. Baldrick's events within the community for years, with Trevor as a shavee for six years. It's awesome. We've got 27 boys and one adult “ me “ to be shaved, Trevor Sanders said. It's a great thing. I get goose bumps. This year the group raised more than $12,000 for the foundation, more than doubling their fundraising goal. When Trevor, a lifelong Granite Bay resident, became aware of the event, he and Jenni jumped at the chance to help raise funds. His son, Ryder Sanders, a fourth-grader at Eureka School, has shaved his head four times in honor of kids with cancer. Ryder dyed his blond hair green for the event, along with other kids who had heads of red and purple hair. It's a community I believe strongly in giving back to, Trevor said. It seemed like a great cause, and it's just hair. Kids participating at Greenhills: Riley Babineau Tim Nelson Jake Redmon Derek Byam Jonas Lee Nicholas Malamatenios Jeff Romeo Kyle Lanza RJ Dumke