BRAWLEY — When the category of "longest beard" was announced during this year's Whiskerino contest in Brawley, the eight other competitors on the stage with Darrel Kelley of Holtville took a step back.
Since most of the other contestants sported trimmed variations of the goatee, Kelley's long ZZ Top soup-catcher stood alone.
In addition to "longest beard." Kelley won the title of "most unique beard."
The Whiskerino contest is the final part of the entertainment during the annual CowBelles Beef Cook-off, which is part of Cattle Call week here.
In the past, the event has showcased the Rollie Fingers-esque 'stashes of the Imperial Valley's mustachioed elite or celebrated the grubby beards of men who had returned from hunting trips.
This year there was only one contestant with a mustache and two with beards.
Ironically, the award for "best mustache" was not won by the only man who wore one.
It went to Tyler Brandt of Brawley, who wears a cleanly trimmed goatee. He also won the award for "best overall beard."