Calhoun shaves it off for cancer research


In what has become a yearly spring ritual, hundreds of Calhoun High School students, staff members and local residents recently had their heads shaved en masse in Calhoun’s gym. It was all for a good cause: raising money for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, a nonprofit organization that funds scientific and medical research into childhood cancer.

About 200 people got buzz cuts on March 18 at Calhoun to express solidarity with children suffering from cancer. Volunteer barbers and hairdressers did the honors. The shave-ees asked people to donate to St. Baldrick’s. In all, the school raised more than $60,000. Dozens of girls also donated their hair to Pantene Pro-V Beautiful Lengths Campaign, which makes wigs for women with cancer.

It was the eighth consecutive year in which Calhoun hosted a St. Baldrick’s head-shaving fundraiser. Peter Magnuson, an English teacher and girls’ tennis coach at Calhoun, has organized the annual event since its inception in 2007. To date, Calhoun has raised $360,000 for St. Baldrick’s, and more than 300 people have made hair donations.

“It’s become part of the culture at Calhoun and part of the culture in Merrick,” Magnuson said in news release. “Anytime kids do things that are a little bit bigger than themselves and give to others and make sacrifices, it’s a wonderful thing.”