Congrats and thanks to Bishops Barbershop who cast the winning bid for "Receive a Glowing Feature About You in the Mercury" in our 2006 charity auction! We appreciate their generosity! For more info on our auction issue see pg. 3!

First of all, you need a haircut.

Your shaggy appearance isn't making you any friends, and neither is your laissez faire attitude when it comes to donating to charitable organizations. That's why Bishops Barbershop is stepping up to the plate with their quarterly event called "Charity Day"—solely designed to make YOU exit their shop looking, smelling, and most importantly, feeling like a rose!

"Charity Day" is the brainchild of Bishops' Stella Farina, who brought her vast experience from the world of nonprofits to her current job as general manager of this local chain of rock 'n' roll barbershops.

"From my background in nonprofits, I'm really aware of the trouble smaller charities run into when they don't have a big workforce," says Farina. "This is a way for some really necessary, yet struggling nonprofits to make some money, without expending the energy they can use to help others."

And so spawned the idea for "Charity Day" in which all of the Bishops shops donate proceeds (anything above average daily sales amounts) to a worthy and overlooked charity. Plus, since this day is celebrated on a quarterly basis, FOUR times as many charities can be on the receiving end of Bishops' and your generosity!

Past recipients of Charity Day include nonprofits such as local art/performance exhibitors Disjecta, p:ear (who promotes and assists emerging artists), as well as Big Brothers and Big Sisters—all worthy organizations that mean a lot to Farina and company.

"While we don't have any 'pet charities,'" Farina notes, "we do lean toward nonprofits that benefit arts organizations, kids, and the educational system—which really needs a lot of help. But we're open to ideas!"

Keeping with the theme of supporting kids and their artistic sensibilities—which seems to be under constant attack from a certain Bush administration I could name—local nonprofit Artists for the Arts (AFTA) is this quarter's recipient of Bishops Charity Day. And if you're looking for an arts support system for kids that give equally to all mediums of art—music, painting, theater, etc.—it would be hard to find a better organization.

AFTA is a dedicated group of artists, actors, musicians, and dancers (along with parents and educators) who have come together to give kids who are interested in the arts new opportunities. The organization serves students in grades K-12 within Portland public and private schools—primarily those who have trouble getting the money needed for successful arts programs. Plus they strive to inspire teachers and educators by offering ideas for sharing arts within the system, as well as giving suggestions to those who would love to help, but have no idea how to get started. They go about this via an in-house program entitled "SHARE" that provides a way for local businesses to donate a portion of any event—auctions, raffles, CD release parties, concerts, etc.—to AFTA, which they then give to the schools with the greatest need.

Study after study clearly demonstrate all the benefits kids receive when they are exposed to artistic endeavors—so it really benefits everyone to offer AFTA a helping hand. Contact them via their website ( or (if you're old-timey) by telephone (914-1476)—and if you're super-duper lazy, you can show AFTA some love simply by getting a haircut, shave, or dye-job at any Bishops location on MARCH 13 from 9 am to 9 pm. Out of town that day? Simply drop by any location to pick up a Bishops Charity Day Gift Certificate and get that swanky 'do whenever you damn well please. Here's the important thing: The money that's collected from Charity Day is guaranteed to make a big difference in the lives of a lot of kids who really need your help.


Another reason to support Charity Day? You're setting a great example for other businesses that see the worth in giving back to their community. From purely a business perspective, being generous makes fiscal sense.

Says Bishops' Farina, "By pairing up with these nonprofits, they're helping us as much as we're helping them. We get people in our shops who ordinarily might not come in—and the charities get the money they need!"

Celebrating the community in which they live and work is a big deal for Bishops, which is not only exemplified in their charity work, but in their advertisements as well. Check out the back cover of any recent Mercury, and you'll see Bishops ads with hot pix of your Portland friends and neighbors, sporting sweet haircuts and lolling around in semi-nudity. It's a tongue-in-cheek nod to those glossy high-fashion adverts, with one crucial difference: The models are either Bishops customers or Portland people and include such luminaries as Commissioner Sam Adams.

And other big plans are in the works for Bishops, who already boast five shops scattered in every Portland quadrant; while it's great fun to listen to decent rock and guzzle a brew while getting your hair styled, owner Leo Rivera and staff will be broadening their scope with a brand spankin' new location opening in mid-April on the corner of 10th and NW Everett.

Bishops, The Salon is a different beast from the other five shops in that it will be a full-service salon—adding manicures, pedicures, and facial waxing to their already accomplished litany of services. Plus, while the new shop will retain the barbershop-with-an-edge attitude you've come to know and love, Bishops, The Salon will take on a more stylish uptown vibe—brandishing a look that will appeal to your fancier side (while offering those same competitive prices). Edgier design is the order of the day with European chairs, high-end driers, and even a top o' the line color station.

BUT HERE'S THE PART THAT'LL MAKE YOU SQUEAL: Where other Bishops locations offer you complimentary beer with your haircut, their newest salon ups the ante with a complimentary liquor and wine bar—a bar where you can sit while getting your nails and toesies done. It's a scheme designed to make men—as well as the gals—feel comfortable, welcome, and pampered. OH, SWEET LUXURY, thy name is surely Bishops.

While it may be a busy time for this local mini-empire, it all returns to giving something back to the city that supports them.

As Farina puts it, "We love what Charity Day does for us, and the people we help—but I would love to see other small businesses also get involved... so they can get the benefit from doing something like this. Not only from a marketing perspective, but so they can really benefit the community."

On behalf of the Mercury, I'd like to personally give a shout-out for all the support Bishops has given our yearly online charity auction, as well as their continuing work to assist local nonprofits who really need it. Want to show some appreciation as well? Here's an idea: GO GET A HAIRCUT (particularly at any Bishops location on March 13).

As mentioned earlier, you could really use one.

Want your nonprofit to be considered as a possible recipient of charity day? Drop an email to ALSO! Bishops is currently hiring a salon manager and commissioned staff for their new location. Hit up for more information.