Mo’ fun for funds from restaurant crew

Movember fund-raisers Ruhmor (far left), Joel Macaraeg (second front left) and Woodman (bottom right).

Movember fund-raisers Kalee Ruhmor (far left), Joel Macaraeg (second from left) and Kurt Woodman (bottom right).

Three years ago, in the fall of 2011, Kalee Ruhmor, Joel Macaraeg, and Kurt Woodman started their own Movember team to raise money for prostate cancer. The young restaurant employees kicked off their “Mo-Rio” journey and quickly assembled an expanding team of fundraising moustache growers at their workplace at the Boathouse in Port Moody. It marked the beginning of the Mo-Rio brothers’ journey to establish an annual charity fundraiser in community.

The following autumn the team held the first Mo-Rio Brothers Annual Movember Fundraiser, with the support from Port Moody Boathouse executives who volunteered to host the event on the enclosed patio. Coworkers, friends and families comprised the majority of the partygoers that year, but at the next annual fundraiser the audience grew. The event is now a well-known social gathering for the tight-knit Port Moody community.

“I don’t want to wait for a tragedy to make a difference.”  – Joel Macaraeg

Last year they raised over $3,000 for the Movember cause after all expenditures. Jill Noort, an honorary mo-sister and event coordinator for the team, said that sponsorship and donations initially came from friends and family but as the community becomes more involved they are seeing charitable contributions from businesses such as the Delish Gluten Free Bakery and Romer’s Burger Barn. The popular jewelry company, Stella and Dot, sent representatives to the event last year and offered discounted prices to attendees.

The team has a support system with helpful volunteers eager to make the night run smoothly. There are usually two bartenders on duty, a photographer, people selling raffle tickets at the door, a host (Woodman), and a few cooks at the barbecue, serving complimentary-with-ticket-purchase hot dogs.

“This event is kind of unique because none of us have been directly affected by prostate cancer,” Macaraeg said. “We see this as being proactive and trying to prevent these things before they happen. I don’t want to wait for a tragedy to make a difference.”

The fundraiser falls in the last week of November every year, so that the gentleman can sport their month’s long work of moustaching. Details for this year’s event will be announced soon.

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