What a top-notch field of Paul Bunyan Look-Alikes! No finer collection of bearded, axe-wielding woodland creatures has even been assembled, nor is it likely to be assembled again. To help us select three winners out of 571 submissions, we consulted Adrian Flygt, Master Beard Farmer and professional STIHL® TIMBERSPORTS® athlete.
“After much deliberation, a few good beard scratches and a few spins of the axe, I am pleased to crown the three Paul Bunyan Look-Alike winners,” said Adrian. “Ben N., Tommy W. and Derrek M. are worthy recipients of the grand prize!”
Each lumberjack will receive the grand prize — a $250 STIHL Gift Certificate and a load of Paul Bunyan’s gear, including a Free Swingin’ Flannel Shirt, Fire Hose® Work Pants, Contractor Boots and Simply Great Beard Oil. Without further ado, and in no particular order, we present our favorites.
Ben N. is a woodworker and self-proclaimed lumberjack mascot of Laurel, Mississippi, a town founded on lumber. “My blue ox is a ’62 Chevy, hauling reclaimed pine to Scotsman Co., my wood shop where I build good, simple furniture. 6′6″ and 300 lbs. of flannel and sawdust, and when I’m old, I reckon I’ll become Santa Claus,” he shared in his entry.
Adrian felt “Big Ben” stood out as the total look-alike package, a real-life Paul Bunyan. He said, “Ben’s living the life of the legend as a craftsman who relies on the woods to make a living with a big, burly presence to make sure all his work gets finished. His trusty pick-up is actually strong and blue, that beard would tip over a lesser man and his boots wear the scars of jobs well done. Whether reclaiming timber or scouring the forests of Mississippi, he casts a large, flannel shadow. Ben’s a man we’ll tell stories about.”
Born in the Arcadia Valley of Missouri, Tommy W. is a landscaper by trade but a lumberjack at heart. He’s a larger-than-life character standin’ in at 6′9″ who, according to his entry, “smells of pine, sweat and leather.” It goes on to say, “There’s nothing he loves more than the sound of his maul striking the wedge. His Babe is a Malamute named Old Bill Barley Bloodaxe. Ol’ Bill is known to help Tom pull 1,000 lbs. of wood! Together, they can down flapjacks faster than a freight train goin’ downhill with the throttle full up!”
Our distinguished judge Adrian called Tommy “a giant man who works for a living.” He elaborated, “He has all the aspects of being Paul Bunyan covered. A hardworking job that involves the outdoors? Tommy’s a landscaper (check). Epic beard to keep unscrupulous people away and to store snacks? His beard appears to be of the elusive ginger variety (check). A brute of a coworker that you can count on all the time? “Babe” seems inadequate when up against a moniker like “Old Bill Barley Bloodaxe” (check). Add in a majestic submission picture where Tommy looks as comfortable in the woods as a majestic pine tree, and you have an easy winner.”
At 6′10″ Derrek M. doesn’t need a ladder to trim trees for Lapeer, Michigan locals, and his size 18 boot tracks are the stuff local legends are made of. His heroic submission gives a full account of his Bunyan-like prowess. “Who needs an axe? This lumberjack rips trees out of the ground with his bare hands, squeezes the sap out of sugar maples and a mere chuckle turns it to syrup. Whether he’s splitting wood or melting steel with fire, you better believe it takes a heck of a heap of flapjacks and pig to fuel this man. It’s said the residents of a town in Montana once tried to erect a statue in his honor, but they couldn’t find stone hard enough.”
This was a tricky one. Adrian admits that it was tempting to disqualify Derrek from the start for fear that his elaborate submission was a story he had heard once before. Adrian eventually reconsidered and felt “Derrek’s size and strength matched Paul Bunyan. He’s a walking, talking man who lives with the problem of what to do with maple trees after you squeeze fresh maple syrup out of them. I will assume that the volume of maple syrup and the peril it presents to beards is what keeps his growth more in check than the other beards on display. It is my hope that the grand prize winnings help him line up a stout helper because once he has Babe by his side he may have to legally change his name to Mr. Bunyan.”
Stay Hairy Out There
We’d like to thank all our customers who participated by submitting their photos and stories as well as all the fans that voted for their favorites to make this such a lively endeavor. Adrian added a final word of congratulations to the competitors, “Remember when life involves beards, hard work and the right gear, there are no losers. Stay hairy out there, we know you’re working.”
Want a lumberjack-worthy beard just like our winners? Shop our apothecary section for beard care essentials.