Participants in the Make-A-Wish fundraiser at Tangles Salon on Simcoe Street in Tillsonburg Saturday were going home blue or going home bald.
“Eight of us had our hair cut today, and two went blue,” said local Go Blue Go Bald team organizer Annette Coderre.
As newly-shaved Make-A-Wish fundraisers, they each have a common goal this summer.
“Hats and sunscreen,” laughed Craig Glover.
As of Saturday afternoon, close to $2,000 had been raised for Make-A-Wish Southwestern Ontario, who grant wishes to children with serious medical conditions or life-threatening illness. The Tri-County Adorablues’ target, said Coderre, was $3,000 and they hope to continue raising money – sporting their newly shaved or blue heads – over the next few weeks.
Coderre got the ball rolling as a tribute to her father, Phil Coderre, who died from cancer in May, getting her hair cut Saturday afternoon for a cancer-patient wig.
“My father and a friend of mine were both worried when they went through chemo they would both lose their hair. So I decided, about three-and-a-half years ago, to grow my hair and cut it for cancer.
“Anybody who knows me knows I go big or… I don’t do it. I figured, while I’m cutting my hair I’m going to shave my head for Make-A-Wish because we know a few kids its helped. I mentioned it to a few people, friends and family, and they piled on top.
“We wanted to help a child from our area, Southwestern Ontario, so our money is going to Jorie. I called Make-A-Wish and they gave me some information about her. She’s 16 and she has leukemia. She wants to go to Hawaii – she loves the tropics, coconuts – so her dream’s to go to Hawaii. It’s nice to put a name with who we’re helping.”
Go Blue Go Bald is a traditional Make-A-Wish fundraiser, said Coderre, who couldn’t Go Blue first because she was donating her hair. Her husband, however, did Go Blue prior to Saturday’s shaving.
“It’s amazing to see peoples’ reactions when your hair is blue. Now, I get to experience what it’s like being bald. It’s nice for us to know what some of these kids are going through, it really give you a greater appreciation.”
Make-A-Wish supplied buttons and a banner for the fundraiser, as well as a couple toques. Patrina Ryerse, of Tangles Salon, offered the use of her salon.
“Tangles and Riley’s have been amazing,” said Coderre.
“And people can still donate,” she stressed. “We have buttons that say ‘Ask us about our bald head.’”
For Coderre, her hair-donation was a one-time contribution, but she hopes the Go Blue Go Bald campaign will continue in Tillsonburg.
“We’ll see what happens,” she smiled. “I’d kind of like to make it an annual event – and make it bigger. I’ve had so much fun!”
Even though she will have shorter hair next summer, Coderre said she’d definitely Go Blue.