On Monday at the Village Restaurant in Essex, it was a party in the parking lot for a wonderful cause, the seventh annual “Cape Ann Shave to Save”, a tradition challenging residents to shave their heads to raise money for cancer.
By the end of the afternoon, $8,344 was raised for St. Jude’s Hospital, bringing the cumulative total to more than $55,000.
Shave to Save started seven years ago when Dawn Burnham and her friend Jane Shaw, a breast cancer survivor celebrating years in remission from her disease, gathered a small group of friends to start a fundraiser. Over the years, that group grew, and even expanded to include men who also jumped in the chair to shave their heads for charity. Dawn began dying her hair in bright blue or pink before the event, knowing it would all be coming off anyway.
This year’s event was bittersweet, but special. And it showed. Earlier this year, Jane Shaw died after her cancer returned.
The Village Restaurant’s Carling Audette offered her restaurant as a venue, which had the feel of a fun, family block party. This year the event featured food provided by the Essex Lions Club who donated all proceeds. Live music was provided by Albie and Bob Mitchel, Bruce Addison and Amy Rich. Chelsea Berry also joined the group. And, of course, the clipping “chair” was up front in the form of the restaurant bench. Dawn Burnham’s daughter, Erin Ricker, gave out the clips.
“I am so thankful to the local businesses who were sponsors on the tee shirts and Jungle Sales, and all the businesses and friends who donated gifts to the raffle,” said Dawn. “We had a great group of volunteers who helped make the event such a success. And a special thanks to Carling Audette for her support and letting us use the Village Restaurant for the event.”