Ponytail Roundup

This Letter to the Editor of the Canby Herald written by Kendra Mikulec, Ponytail Roundup, was published in its entirety on Wednesday, March 6, 2002

February 25, 2002

Dear Canby Herald,

I want to extend a warm thank you for all of your wonderful coverage and support of  the Ponytail Roundup for Locks of Love.  I owe a special thank you to you, Roma Kay, for spending time with me, and covering this cause so thoroughly and accurately.  You always write with such sincerity and kindness.  Thank you David and Jon, for the great follow-up story.  You were able to bring the readers right into the Chamber of Commerce meeting that day.  JillMarie and I have both been overwhelmed with community support, thanks to you and staff involved at the Herald.  I'd like to share some of these loving moments with you, because without your "getting the word out there" for us, they would not have happened.

Meet Lisa, a waitress at Jarboe's, who willingly and lovingly gave us her beautiful brown locks with the help of Park Avenue Salon.  She is now proudly sporting her "new do," and telling others about our cause.

I'd like to introduce you to Maria, who gingerly handed me her braid, donned with bright pink ribbons, one of which she cut off in 1952.  The other, she had mailed to Germany, to her mother.  She'd been holding onto it until she read about our cause in The Canby Herald.

There is my beautiful little friend, Rosa.  She is five years old, with beautiful, black, Mexican hair.  I took her to cut off her braid, and to be treated like a "princesita" at Canby Hair Design.  Her mother, Adriana, gave me her own hair also, which she recently cut off and saved - and plans to give me her next braid, which is already longer than ten inches!

A wonderful person, named Joanne, has offered to build and maintain a website for us, and has volunteered all her services and knowledge, at no charge.  She has already given us many great suggestions.  Andy, at Front Street Photography, has offered to take free "Before and After" pictures of donors to post online, and to use for publicity.

There is an entire drum circle, planning to bless their hair and donate it. Multiple ponytails are finding us, from all walks of life and cultures.

Ken, a fellow Kawanian, has created and printed introduction cards with a before picture of me, and an explanation of the cause.  The same day, I was approached by one of the waitresses at Cottage Kitchen, who is willing to donate her long, blonde locks.

Of course, I have to extend a huge amount of gratitude to my friend, employer, and inspiration for my interest in philanthropy, Frank Cutsforth.  He has shown me by example what true selfless acts are, in his support of this community, for the sixteen years I have known him.  He not only generously donated $450.00 to our cause, but lovingly cut my locks.

There are so many stories, already to tell.  I would like others to know how willing you were to give us front page coverage.  With your help, our story made it into living rooms, around dinner tables, and in the hearts of Canby residents and beyond.  I want you to hear the "Thank you" I whisper to you, every time I am handed a ponytail.  I want you to share this joy with me, and the feeling of unity I am experiencing in the town of Canby.  

Kendra Mikulec