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In annual Carroll Tech Center Whoville Hairdo competition, there are 'no rules'

Winters Mill High School student Kristin Vaeth stood in the cosmetology room at the Carroll County Career and Technology Center, a flurry of activity around her.

Some students were cutting hair, others dying it, some using blow dryers and straighteners to style it. A handful of students were giving manicures.

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Vaeth, on the other hand, was doing something a bit crazier.

The senior instead was working on a mannequin head. She stood teasing the light-brown hair before rolling a pine cone into it. While it might seem unusual, Vaeths’ holiday themed design — a project for the class’ annual Whoville Hairdo competition, inspired by Dr. Seuss’ “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” — was right on the mark.

Wendy Litchfield, a cosmetology instructor for the Tech Center, said this is the seventh year of the event.

“They can create anything from the Grinch, you know, Jim Carrey version, or they can create some sort of creation on their own,” she said.

Some of the mannequins look like Cindy Lou Who, and others are just something totally different, Litchfield added.

The cosmetology students were busily working on their projects last week and continued into this week, needing to be finished by Thursday, Dec. 20, when the competition takes place. According to a news release from the school system, students may tour the holiday Whoville styles that day from 9 to 11 a.m. and parents of cosmetology students are invited to come see their creations from 12:45 to 1:15 p.m. Tech Center and school system staff and professional cosmetologists will vote on the 27 Whoville creations from 2 to 2:30 p.m. The top 10 win prizes, Litchfield said.

Vaeth’s mannequin head had a wreath-like wrap around the hairline, followed by a bow before some holiday decorations in the back.

“I wasn’t sure how I was going to go about this,” Vaeth said.

Some of her teachers gave her some ideas, and Vaeth said she just took off, trying different things and throwing a bunch of decorations onto the hairdo.

“It just screams Whoville and Christmas,” she added.

Vaeth said she had always heard about the assignment, and looked forward to getting to do it this year. The competition lets students show their creativity and artistic aspects, she said.

With half a school year left until graduation, Vaeth said she’s hoping to work at a salon, but also take some business classes so one day she can run her own salon.

Tech Center students participate in Whoville Hairdo competition

Chanel Hopkins, a senior from Francis Scott Key and student in the cosmetology program, also said she hopes to one day open a salon.

Hopkins said she always gave herself haircuts when she was younger, which is what steered her toward the cosmetology program.

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“I always experimented with hair when I was a kid,” she said.

And the Whoville competition is just another chance to experiment.

Hopkins said her design for the Whoville competition “just kind of happened naturally.” She worked on the mannequin on a Thursday in December, adding glitter to a bunch of small pony tails she sectioned off.

You can do anything your heart desires in this competition, she said.

“It’s like the crazy side of Whoville,” she said, adding, “There's no rules.”

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