The U.S. Coast Guard doesn't want your hair floating in the Gulf, and neither does BP. But if you care about warding off oil from South Florida's coastline, Christine Guyard needs your help.
"I feel like we have to be proactive," says the Palm Beach Gardens mother of two. "My whole purpose was to get the hair and create a bit of a stockpile for our state."
Guyard is the founder of The Great Florida Weave, an organization that's collecting donations of human hair and pantyhose to make boom to soak up the oil from the Never-Ending Spill. She's gathered more than 400 pounds of hair, and is working with another nonprofit, Matter of Trust, to send them to areas impacted by the disaster.
Last month the Coast Guard said it didn't want the hair boom
that had been arriving from all over the country, because it could
cause debris problems. The Florida Department of Environmental
Protection has also asked people not to use homemade boom, since disposing of it can be difficult. (To see a video comparison of a hair boom vs. a conventional boom, click here).
Yet Guyard is undeterred. She says there are still smaller municipalities and marinas using the natural boom, and she wants individuals in Florida to be able to protect their own private waterways and residences.
"I think a lot of this is gonna end up coming away from the government," Guyard says. "Everybody wants to do something... We're trying to concentrate on Florida."
Tomorrow night at 6 p.m., South Shores Tavern in Lake Worth is holding a benefit concert to raise funds for Guyard's group and Matter of Trust. Eight local bands, including The Next Band and First October, will be rocking out for the cause.
Cash donations are welcome, but please don't bring hair. Guyard says they need pantyhose instead. The hose is used to ship the hair, which is then encased in mesh to make boom. So ladies, dig out your stockings, and head down to the bar.