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Mustache contest to benefit Burn Foundation is growing

These firefighters from Moyers Corners participated last year.

These firefighters from Moyers Corners participated last year.

— The firefighter mustache contest is growing.

Onondaga County emergency personnel — firefighters, 911 operators, police officers, EMTs and paramedics — will be growing the facial hair for a good cause.

For more information

Interested emergency personnel can contact Zaferakis who will send along the rules and guidelines.

Members of the public looking to sponsor a mustache in their area can also contact Zaferakis at zaferas@mcfd.org or visit their Facebook page.

Last year, firefighters at Moyers Corners and Syracuse Fire Departments grew the mustaches to raise funds for the CNY Burn Foundation, a not-for-profit that helps survivors of burns. The two departments raised about $8,000 for the foundation through sponsors of each mustache, and are now working together to offer the contest to all Onondaga County agencies.

“What better way to draw attention to yourself than to grow a mustache that you don’t ordinarily have?” said deputy fire chief Stephen Zaferakis. “We’re having a little fun in the firefighting community, but we’re also able to tell the public, ‘hey, this is what we’re doing.’”

Zaferakis says the mustaches bring attention to the firefighters, who can then explain the mission of the Burn Foundation to the public. At the end of the contest, which runs through the month of April, those participating will be honored for those who raised the most money through sponsors, the agency that raises the most, worst attempt and most colorful, among other awards.

The agencies are also working with the foundation to create a page on the foundation’s website to show before and after pictures of the participants. The public can then go on the website and vote for the best mustaches.

Zaferakis hopes to raise about $15,000 from the contest this year.

Interested emergency personnel can contact Zaferakis who will send along the rules and guidelines. About 15 men so far, including firefighters from Camillus, have signed up.

Members of the public looking to sponsor a mustache in their area can also contact Zaferakis at zaferas@mcfd.org or visit their Facebook page.

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