Letting their hair down for a good cause: Two local boys competing in national mullet championship

Published 12:10 am Wednesday, July 19, 2023

Two local toddlers are competing in a national mullet contest in order to help raise money for charity. Liam James, 2, showed off his mullet titled RoCo Ten-Ninety and Clark Cummings, 2, entered his mullet called RoCo Gold.

When the families realized that contestants were required to name their mullets, both tried to think of clever names that represented where they come from. Liam’s father and grandfather were both sheriff deputies, so the family decided on 10-90 to play off of police codes and a nickname for the hairstyle.

“The contest required that we named the mullet and came up with a story about it, so we started looking up names to call it. Eventually we found out that it is common in the mullet community to call a mullet 10-90,” said Tricia Varela, Liam’s grandmother.

Clark’s mullet name came from the color of his mane.

“It’s unique to him. I haven’t seen many people with blonde-headed, curly mullets,” said Abigail Cummings, Clark’s mother

Both Clark and Liam already had their mullets grown before their families learned about the contest.

“He was kind of born with the mullet, it just started growing longer in the back and shorter in the front and people always said ‘oh I love his mullet,’ so I never cut it and let it keep growing,” said Abigail.

Liam inherited his mullet from his father’s style. His grandfather was in the Navy when Liam’s father was born and a Wake County Sheriff’s Deputy after that causing him to be away from home often. Varela said she let her son’s hair grow out so that Liam’s grandfather would feel less like he was missing out on being a part of his son growing up. When Liam was born, he looked just like his father and so Varela asked his parent’s to see if he could grow the mullet as well, and he has been growing it ever since.

The USA Mullet Championship was started to raise money for Jared’s Allen Homes for Wounded Warriors. The charity was founded by former Minnesota Vikings tight end Allen and raises money to build or remodel homes for wounded veterans. Family and friends who want their contestant to win can vote once a day, but money donated in a contestant’s name also counts towards the score. The contest had raised over $33,000 as of Monday morning, according to Varela.

“It’s just a cute, feel-good king of thing for a great cause,” said Varela.

Voting for round one ended Monday at midnight, and only the top 34 from the ages one to four bracket moved on. While the scores are still being compiled, an update posted by the competition last Sunday on Facebook showed Clark in the top 25 while Liam was outside of the top 50.

If either boy ends up making the next round, fan voting for the second round will begin on Thursday and run through Monday. At the end, the first place winner will win $5,000, second place will win $1,000 and third place will win $500.