Carson City trounced Virginia City, 107 to 28, in the beard contest after the Nevada Day Parade.
Virginia City’s bearded men went first in the community competition, which came after eight individual categories were judged.
The VC crew filing across the paved legislative amphitheater site for the final competition, while impressive, couldn’t match the capital city’s participants when they marched by next. The capital’s crew were within a few whiskers of defeating the Storey County group fourfold as they trekked the same territory.
Among Carson’s bushy bunch were Sen. Dean Heller and Neal Coston, the pair accepting the winner’s plaque for the most hirsute community moments later.
Heller spoke briefly before the contest, thanking Billy Mayfield of The Mayfield Gang for acting as moderator again this year. The U.S. Senator and former Nevada Secretary of State was decked out in full western regalia. He also managed to come in third, soon after his remarks to the crowd, when he entered the category for best groomed beard. Capturing first in that category was Mike Powell of Reno.
Mayfield and his son, Texas Jack, also wore their western outfits and insisted on sticking with their western act names to run the contest, just as they have in prior years. The ample audience roared when Mayfield, over an improved sound system, prodded them to vocalize their support for what he called a great contest.
Contest judges were Nevada Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Gibbons and three of his colleagues, Justices Michael Cherry, Nancy Saitta and Ron Parraguirre,
Carson City not only took the community honors, but supplied first place winners in three of the eight individual categories. Trevor Ritoli took first for reddest beard, Jasbir Sandhu won for blackest beard and Bob Steward captured first for the fullest beard.
The scruffiest beard top prize went to Todd Prather of Minden. Robert Clements of Dayton took the honors for the whitest beard. Salt and pepper beard honors went to William Cox of Battle Mountain.
The only non-Nevadan grabbing a top individual prize was Aarne Bielefeldt of Willits, Calif. He won for longest beard after Chief Justice Gibbons used a tape measure to check the longest of the long among the entries for that category. Bielefeldt was wearing a sweatshirt that had this emblazoned on the back: “Terminal Length Beard Club.”