69 men come together to form world’s longest beard chain
It may look like a scene from The Hobbit, but this is actually the world’s longest beard chain.
It was formed by facial-hair aficionados from all over America – even as far as Alaska – after they descended on the city of Casper, Wyoming, in November 2022 for the National Beard and Moustache Championships, organized by Beard Team USA.
The night before the championships began, competitors kicked off festivities with a bar crawl around Casper, which ended with 69 men bound at the beard.
Measuring 45.99 m (150 ft 10.75 in), the chain of chin whiskers was over two times longer than the previous record (19.05 m; 62 ft 6 in) achieved in Germany in 2007.
“A few of us are good friends with the German beardsmen that set the original record, so there was some light-hearted rivalry at work,” said Bryan Nelson, President of the World Beard and Moustache Association and Creative Director of Beard Team USA.
To form the record-breaking chain, competitors stood side by side and linked their beards using hair clips.
Each person split their beard into two halves, attaching one to either person standing beside them.
They were all required to have beards measuring at least 20 cm (7.8 in) in length.
“We found it much more difficult to get everyone lined up than initially thought,” Bryan said.
“We received a lot more participants than we expected, and some of them had such enormous facial hair that our original spacing plans became irrelevant.”
72 people initially took part, however, three left the chain while it was still being formed, so they were discounted.
Once everyone was joined up, the timer began. They had to maintain the chain for at least 30 seconds, or the entire attempt would be disqualified.
Luckily, for many of the participants, sitting still inside a bar is their favourite hobby, so they managed to easily clear the 30 seconds to achieve the record.
For Bryan, the best part was watching the reactions of local residents who walked into the bar and found “60+ bearded and moustachioed men with their beards tied together.”
The annual US National Beard and Moustache Championships take place in a different city each year, attracting competitors from all over the country.
Some attend the event as their yearly vacation, and over time they have formed an incredibly tight-knit community.
All newcomers are welcomed with open arms though, as local Casper resident Cory Stovall found out when he signed up to compete.
“Immediately, it was handshakes and hellos — and just excitement to be here,” he told the Casper Star Tribune.
Roughly 300 people entered the 2022 championships, competing in around 50 categories.
They battled it out for awards such as Best Dali Moustache, Best Uber-Stache, Best Musketeer, and Best Garibaldi Beard.
The next US National Beard and Moustache Championships are due to be held on 4 November 2023 in Daytona Beach, Florida.
“We will try to defeat the record made in Casper, and have plans to attempt to make or break some other records as well!” – Bryan Nelson