Usually people don’t get in line to go bald.
Yet several dozen people packed the Great Clips at Ken Caryl Avenue and South Simms Street on Sunday night, waiting to forsake their follicles for a good cause.
The assortment of students, parents, teachers and coaches from Chatfield, Dakota Ridge and Columbine high schools who lined up to get their hair buzzed were there to support Todd Glasser.
Glasser, an assistant coach for Chatfield’s boys basketball team, was diagnosed with colon cancer earlier this year. Glasser said he has had surgery and is currently undergoing chemotherapy.
When his hair began to be affected by the chemo, Glasser decided to shave it off. What started as a talk with his regular stylist at Great Clips about shaving his head turned into a fund-raising event for alternative high schools in the South Jeffco area, Glasser said.
“I was expecting maybe 20 people to show up. We’re going to have 70 to 100 people,” Glasser said. “It just tickles my heart.”
The staff at Great Clips volunteered their time, giving buzz cuts for a $10 donation — and a few words of encouragement for those worried about their new look.
“Boys are the pickiest about their hair,” said Pam Schnakenburg, a stylist at another Great Clips location. “Most of them don’t want to, but it’s for a good cause. But they still are thinking, ‘How am I going to look?’ ”
There were more than a few boys outside the shop Sunday night who had to muster their courage.
“I’m still hesitating,” said Steven Seagravas, a senior at Chatfield. “But I want to support my coach. I think he’d come and do it if it were any one of us.”
To his credit, Seagravas not only got a haircut, his head is now completely smooth.
“I’m still in shock a little bit,” Seagravas said. “It was tough, but I’m happy I did it.”
Schnakenburg, who formerly worked at the Ken Caryl Great Clips and is a friend of Glasser, said she volunteered as soon as she heard about the fund-raiser.
“I used to cut Todd’s hair, but I hadn’t seen him in two years,” Schnakenburg said. “As soon as they called me, though, and said he had cancer, I wanted to come here and be a part of it.”
Brad Simons, a basketball coach at Chatfield and a life-long friend of Glasser, promised to get his hair buzzed along with his buddy.
“I told Todd, the battle he’s going through with cancer, when he got his hair shaved, I’d do it too,” Simons said. “I might have even found myself a new ‘do.”
While rivals on the court, the three schools quickly came together to support Glasser. Simons said it wasn’t a surprise at all to see so many people come to support his friend.
“It just says what Todd does for the community and that people in this community, from all three schools, support good causes,” Simons said.
“It’s just a good thing to do. A lot of people are going to benefit from it,” said Columbine junior Dan Degraaf, 16, who’s on the basketball team. “Doing things like this actually makes our rivalry better.”
Glasser said the support he received showed how closely the three schools are connected.
“We just have such a great respect for each other,” Glasser said.
Contact Ramsey Scott at firstname.lastname@example.org or 303-933-2233, ext. 22, and follow him on Twitter@RamseyColumbine.