We are still coming down from the excitement of our homecoming 24th Annual Balding for Dollars Main Event at the BCCH Foundation Saturday May 6th, 2023!
We hadn’t had the event on site at the foundation since 2018, and 5 years away, was 5 too many! 2019 saw us at a different location on site due to booking issues, and 2020… well, we all know what happened in the spring of 2020. And though we managed to navigate alternate locations (Beth Isreal in 2022 for a smaller in-person event) and virtual options over the turbulence of the last several years, it felt SO dang good to be back HOME! And the excitement, energy, and philanthropic vibes were palpable. The rain stayed away, and many friends came out to play for our fun filled event.
The event opened with an important land acknowledgment to honour the ancestral and unceded territorial lands in which we graciously hosted our event, of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ílwətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. Then followed a beautiful opening ceremony by Elder Marie Bercier.
We had 50 folks signed up to shave for our event, some remotely, but most at the event on stage, with many of those have 10+ inches to also donate to wigs for kids! An incredible team of stylists graced our stage with their volunteered time & talents to have everyone feeling amazing about their new chop, or breezy baldness! Thank you to the stylists that joined us from Tone Salon, Salon Glam Studio, Golden Shears Co., & Chantel Funk + Co. You were all magical in the participant’s experience. These folks all had different reasons for participating, from being parents of current oncology patients, to supporting bereaved friends, to “just because” they want to help & give back. Our MC Kayla got to connect with many participants sharing how much they raised, and their inspiration for participating, which made for some beautiful moments, and at times it was hard to find a dry eye around.
But the event is certainly not all emotional moments, there was so much joy & laughter to be found! From the games & activity area where families could blow giant bubbles, and play giant games, to the classic Balding for Dollars staple of popcorn & sno-cones, and visiting our friends at the community booths from: Kids Kicking Cancer Foundation, Childhood Cancer Family Support, Starlight, & West Coast Kids Cancer Foundation. We love promoting community over competition as we all have the same goals, we just get there and support families in different ways. Families also enjoyed sharing laughs at the photo-booth, making crafts & custom buttons, and remembering our kids that have passed at the memorial ribbon stop. It was hard to find a kid around that wasn’t decked out in face paint or temporary tattoo art either!
We also had some delicious food to enjoy throughout: Snacks & drinks in part by save-on foods, Benjamin Muza’s family, coffee for the 24th year donated by the BCCH Starbucks, cookies for our gluten free friends from Mama.McCready, and Pizza Pzazz slices completely sponsored for lunch of course!
While enjoying lunch, folks browsed the over $6500 in value of raffle & auction prizes, the merchandise booth with custom t-shirt printing available, and new this year, some of our vendors who in-part or full gave proceeds back to Balding from the items available for sale. Thank you to Jars by Jodi, Fluffy Bunny Cotton Candy, The Mellow Nest, Samantha Renfro, Hand Made Jems, & Karma card co. for joining us with beautiful goods this year.
The entertainment was definitely the hit of the event with live music going all day from: Steven Marriott, Geeta Das, Mom Bop Band, The B-Bots Crew & Eddie Lam who had the crowds rocking out & the energy high at all hours. Plus we had some amazing special guests that left some lasting memories for our guests. Appearances by The Bandits & Berry the Bandit himself, Canucks’ Fin, & Pikachu were so fun! Pacific Fairytales brought many of their friends from magical lands including: Spiderman, Captain America, Mirabel, Anna, & Ash and The 501st Outer Rim Garrison blasted through with 15 of their ‘bad guys with good hearts’ from the star wars galaxy far, far away. And we had Whitecaps player, Julian Gressel join us for some meet & greets & he even showed off his hidden talent of being a barber too, getting to help shave one of our oncology patient parents, Patrick Mercado.
We are so grateful to everyone for the support to make this monumental event happen. From the Balding for Dollars committee, to our many sponsors, to our loyal volunteers old & new, to the donors of prizes, time, & funds, and the participants who cut shaved, and fundraised hard- we just simply couldn’t do this without every last one of you! You are amazing, and truly heroes to families going through childhood cancer & blood disorders!
You helped us raised over $75,000 & counting between remote individual fundraisers & our main event efforts! The fundraiser is still open to accept donations, if you feel inclined to support you can click here. THANK YOU!