Arts & Entertainment
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Ashley MacIsaac headlines village Movember fundraiser

Firkin staff raising money for prostate cancer

Credit: courtesy of

If you’ve noticed a lot of people growing mustaches this month, you’re not alone. In an effort to raise awareness and funds for prostate cancer research, the month of “Movember” has guys pledging to swear off the clippers.

Well-known musician Ashley MacIsaac has thrown his weight behind a local Movember fundraising effort, with a free performance this Saturday night, Nov 27, at the Churchmouse and Firkin Pub.

MacIsaac is an old regular at the Churchmouse and Firkin, and he was recruited when he stopped by recently for a drink.

“In the gay village there isn’t a lot of talk about prostate cancer, as other illnesses have taken the brunt of fundraising,” MacIsaac writes in an email to Xtra. “But as all men, straight or gay, should be aware, checkups and knowledge are available. All that is needed is more funding to help build awareness. Hopefully the few tunes I play will get the folks to open their pockets for a good cause.”

According to Prostate Cancer Canada, prostate cancer is the most common cancer among Canadian men, afflicting one in six men, particularly those in their 40s. Getting an annual checkup can help catch the disease in its earliest, most curable stage, when it’s often asymptomatic, they advise.

“The area we’re in is mainly populated by men, so we thought it would be a hit. But I was still surprised by the number of people that had no idea what Movember was,” says Leah McAllister, a member of the Firkin Moustachio group, made up of three bartenders from two Toronto Firkin locations who joined forces to organize the event.

“Movember is kitschy, it’s kind of neat: you grow a mustache all month… but the more we looked into it, the more startling the facts became. If we can just make people aware of prostate cancer, we can make a big difference.”

Last year, more than 255,000 people worldwide helped raise $47 million; the Canadian campaign was the second largest in the world behind Australia, with more than 35,000 participants raising $7.8 million for Prostate Cancer Canada, according to the Movember website.
There’s no cover charge at the event, and free appetizers will be served. Funds will be raised through raffle ticket sales and an auction, with items from local businesses, and Carlsberg and Creemore will donate a dollar per pint purchased. The evening will also feature door prizes and a contest for the best mustache persona. The prize list includes a night at the Marriott Hotel, TFC signed jerseys, Raptors tickets and gift certificates.

Movember Fundraiser
with Ashley MacIsaac
Sat, Nov 27, 7pm
Churchmouse and Firkin Pub, 475 Church St

For more information on the event, contact Leah McDonnell at or by calling 647-884-4297. To check out the Movember project, visit