TEMECULA, Calif. – (November 8, 2019) – Have you ever wondered what 211 feet of hair looks like? If you’re not a hair stylist, then probably not, but at Pechanga Resort Casino in Temecula, Calif., it took one month and 100 guests to collect it. In its seventh year, Spa Pechanga inside Pechanga Resort Casino in Temecula, Calif., collected 222 ponytails, or 211 feet of hair, through the annual Mane Campaign. The length of the hair is the length of three and one half bowling lanes, or 44 feet taller than Niagara Falls.
“It’s a badge of courage,” said Janet Mroz, Southern California resident battling breast cancer. Janet and three other breast cancer warriors who are clients of Michelle’s Place, a Temecula-based cancer resource center, received their first real hair wigs through the 2019 Mane Campaign. Janet describes how important support is to people like herself during this time in her life. “You feel the love of the community. You feel this blessing that everyone wants to give you. Surviving this and fighting this is not a sole thing. You do need the support of your family and friends, the nursing staff, the community itself, Pechanga supporting this, Hair We Share creating this wig for me.”
The donated hair is sent to Hair We Share, a non-profit organization that provides free real-hair wigs to eligible men, women and children with breast cancer and other medical hair loss conditions. Although the minimum donation requires at least eight inches of hair to be cut, the longest ponytail received was 33 inches. This is the largest ponytail donated through Spa Pechanga to date.
The 222 ponytails combined is enough to make between 24 and 37 real hair wigs for women like Janet who are undergoing breast cancer treatment. It takes six to nine ponytails to make just one wig.
In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the generous hair donors received free haircuts and styles in return.
Earlier in October, Pechanga stylists left the spa and traveled to Little Lake Elementary School in Hemet, Calif. Awaiting them were 19 elementary and high school students and parents eager to chop their locks for the cause. Barbara Caudile, an administrator with the district and a breast cancer survivor, said “you don’t know the happiness it brings to other people who have lost their hair. It makes a big difference to them not to be feeling like an equal like everyone else because they don’t look the same.”
The end of October concluded the special month and Spa Pechanga celebrated with a Hairathon. Fifteen hair donors came out to support the cause and get free haircuts. Eleven year old Alyssa Skarra was donating her hair for someone near and dear to her heart. She adds, “my mom had breast cancer but she found it very early and got it removed. I want to try and donate my hair so I can help as much as I can. I would love to continue donating my hair.”
For more than a decade, Pechanga Resort Casino has been a major supporter of the Susan G. Komen Foundation in its region. Since 2011, resort/casino team members have donated more than $348,000 to the fight against breast cancer and toward raising awareness.
For more information on Spa Pechanga, visit www.pechanga.com or call 951-770-8501.