Skip to Main Content

"The beard is a great sanitary protection to the throat - for purposes of health it should always be worn, just as much as the hair of the head should be. Think what would be the result if the hair of the head should be carefully scraped off three or four times a week with the razor!"  Walt Whitman

2019 marks the 200th birthday of Walt Whitman, America’s literary radical and great poet of democracy - and Brooklyn's own eternal beard growing champion!

Join Brooklyn Public Library, Coney Island USA, and Fort Greene Park Conservancy as we celebrate the legacy of Walt Whitman's contribution to poetry and hipsterism with an all ages and genders beard and moustache competition in beautiful Fort Greene Park*. Co-hosted by legendary Coney Island performance artist Adam Realman and "Too Woke!" comedian Nore Davis, special guest judges Sue Smith, Jordan Temple, Jennifer Miller, Murf Meyer, and Brooklyn Public Library's own Norman Eriksen will award prizes in Whitman-themed categories including the highly coveted "Good Gray Poet" Best in Show prize!  Registration begins at 11am and the show starts at noon.

Hirsute competitors are invited to enter in one of the following categories:

Barbaric Yawp - (Best Natural Moustache)

Leaves of Grass - (Best Natural Beard)

Song of Myself - (Best Costume Beard)

Sea Drift - (Best Styled Beard)

Flag of My Disposition - (Best Styled Moustache)

Out of the Cradle, Endlessly Rocking - (Best Kids Beard)

The Sleepers - (Best Teen Beard)

The Good Gray Poet - (Best in Show)

*The Competition will be located at the base of Fort Greene Park’s Monument Steps Enter at Myrtle and North Portland Avenues, or St. Edwards Street and Willoughby Street from Flatbush Ave subways.

A pop-up pinhole photo booth by photographer Stefan Killen will offer competition participants a free pinhole portrait of their likeness. All models will receive a jpg of their portrait, while winners in the respective beard and moustache categories will receive both a jpg and an 8x10 print of their portrait.

The Walt Whitman Beard & Moustache Competition would not be possible without the generous support, enthusiasm, and partnership of the Ft. Greene Park Conservancy, and Coney Island USA's Adam Realman. These wonderful partners have our enduring gratitude.

*The Walt Whitman Beard & Moustache Competition judges will be awarding prizes based on the overall beauty and creativity of the beards and moustaches presented, and not specifically for Walt Whitman look-alike presentations.

coney islan u s a logo

close navigation