Catonsville hair salon offers free haircuts to support fight against cancer

The four thickly braided ponytails of human hair on the counter of the Lucky 3 hair salon on Frederick Road in Paradise weren't the only signs of success for the store's special event Sept 18 to benefit the Catonsville Relay for Life.

From behind the counter, salon co-owner Micah Stanovich counted the cash donated in exchange for more than 50 free haircuts offered by store employees and from the sale of 30 special salon T-shirts designed by one of the store's customers.

"$1,180," the Lansdowne native announced late Sunday afternoon.

His wife said that while the salon was supposed to open at 10 a.m. Sunday, an hour earlier than the shop's usual Sunday opening, customers showed up 30 minutes early.

"It was really good, the way friends and family came out and supported us," said Valerie Stanovich, also the salon's co-owner.

She said at one point during the day, all eight of the salon's chairs were filled.

"It was good, not too overwhelming," she said on the busy period in which she and her husband — joined by their friends Jessica Dugan and Lauren Sammons, and Lucky 3 employees Tessa Merson, Jen Kindred, Max Chantra and Katrina Keys — had their scissors and combs, hair clippers and dryers in action.

The salon had the Ravens 1 p.m. game against Tennessee on the television on the back wall, so fans could watch their favorite team.

In fact, he event would not have taken place had the Ravens been playing at M&T Bank Stadium, she said.

"We probably would have been at the game if it had been a home game," said the Ravens fan, disappointed by the loss to the Titans but upbeat about her store's success Sunday.

With the one-year anniversary of the shop's Sept. 30, 2010, opening at 6414 Frederick Road coming up, the plan was to do something special in late September, she said.

Choosing to help Catonsville's Relay for Life program that supports the American Cancer Society was an easy choice, said the Arbutus resident.

"I'm sure everybody knows somebody who has had cancer in some form," she said, adding her grandfather died from pancreatic cancer last November and her aunt also has the disease.

Stanovich, who is eight months pregnant with the couple's first child, said Locks of Love is a national nonprofit that provides hairpieces to children in the United States and Canada who have lost their hair due to a long-term medical condition.

Among the customers who donated the ponytails now laying across the salon's front counter was 4-year-old Madison Friedman, she said.

"She was dying to get her hair cut," said Stanovich, who has been cutting hair for five years and met her husband at an Anne Arundel County salon three years ago.

Stanovich said Sunday's crowd was good mix of children, men and women, much like the salon normally draws during its seven-day-a-week hours.

And even with a hair cutting shop only two doors down from the Lucky 3 and another across the street, she said business has been good in the couple's first year.

"It's been good steady growth," she said, adding an inside wall was knocked down six months after the store's opening last year to accommodate more chairs and provide more room.

With that success, and the results from Sunday, she said she and her husband expect to make free haircuts to benefit the American Cancer Society an annual event.

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