More than $1,500 was raised in the month of March for a local cancer foundation by the Santa Barbara Police Department and its mustaches. The Teddy Bear Cancer Foundation and The Kelt Group held a contest on March 29 at Chino’s Rock & Tacos that donated 10 percent of all purchases to the foundation. At the forefront of the event were the mustaches of nine Santa Barbara police officers. Officer Blake Burgard claimed, “At first it was just to build team camaraderie, but then things kind of snowballed and we wanted to put some money on it.”

The competition had a great turnout, and included several categories of mustache, such as best (Christopher Martinez), worst (Charles Katsapis), and creepiest (Blake Burgard). The event was judged by well-known locals including KEYT’s senior reporter John Palminteri and the Police Department’s own Sergeant Mike McGrew. All of the officers reportedly didn’t sport the facial hair until the month of March, so no one was too upset when the event ended with a shave. The snowball effect of Mustache March will more than likely continue, as Burgard said, “Next year we’re going to challenge the Fire Department.”


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