Nils Femiano, winner of the
Nils Femiano, winner of the "wild and bush" beard competition. Gympie Gold Rush Festival, October 14 2017 Rowan Schindler

GOLD RUSH: Gympie's hairiest comp bigger than ever this year

THE Rush Festival's hairiest staple will return in all its glory on Saturday afternoon when Nashy's Big Beard Bonanza hits the Gympie Civic Centre.

Former competition winner and pipe band player Henry Lowe, who will be tasked with separating the best scruffy arrangements from the rest, said this was his way of staying involved with the community.

CLOSE SHAVE AS GYMPIE'S BEARDED KINGS CROWNED

UNTAMED: Nils Femiano won last year's Big Beard Bonanza at the Gympie Gold Rush Festival.
UNTAMED: Nils Femiano won last year's Big Beard Bonanza at the Gympie Gold Rush Festival. Rowan Schindler

Henry Lowe will judge the Gold Rush Festival's Big Beard Bonanza.
Henry Lowe will judge the Gold Rush Festival's Big Beard Bonanza. Josh Preston

"I entered this competition and won it in 1987 and 1988, and I put my hand up (after) I saw on the website they were advertising for the competition,” Mr Lowe said.

"I got in touch with council about it, and they said they ... wanted me to be one of the judges.

"The best part about it is showing the generation behind us what they need to do to promote the area and promote the region.

"I'd like to express my thanks to the Gold Rush committee over so many years for keeping this going, and it's surprising how much it makes other communities aware of what Gympie offers as a region.”

Mr Lowe said the key to a prize-winning beard was "good tucker and drinking plenty of water”.

Winners of the freestyle moustache, full beard natural and full beard freestyle will win a plethora of prizes including an Arrosto Gas Pizza Oven from Barbeques Galore valued at $399.

For voting, entries and more information head to http://rushfestival.com.au/event/nashys-big-beard-bonanza/

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