It was a wild enough idea — wild and woolly, no less — the first time. But WhiskerMania returns for a second year on Saturday, Oct. 8, at the Tim Faulkner Gallery.

WhiskerMania 2 again pits beard against beard in a variety of categories, pitting man against man (and, in some cases, even woman) to see who can claim the title of best facial hair for 2016. Of course, all this fun comes with food, libations and live music, and proceeds benefit a local veterans charity, Active Heroes.

This year’s event figures to be bigger and better — having that first year under its belt, the Derby City Whisker Club added a few wrinkles, such as improved stage setup and new sponsors.

“Since last year’s WhiskerMania was our first large-scale competition any of us had worked on, we really learned the foundation of putting on a great competition,” says DCWC president Ryan Gore. “With that foundation already known for this year, we got those items completed early so we can focus on new things.”

In addition, this year’s WhiskerMania is an official Facial Hair League event, giving it credibility by associating it with the competitive bearding community’s de facto sanctioning body of sorts.

Winners will receive a trophy belt. | Courtesy of WhiskerMania

Winners will receive a trophy belt. | Courtesy of WhiskerMania

There’s also an all-star — for the bearding world, at least — cast of five judges, including veteran bearding competitor Joseph Farrell of Pittsburgh.

Of course, there will be food trucks, vendors, raffles and live music by Hoot Von Woot and Brother Wolves. And a silent auction of a number of donated items will help benefit Active Heroes.

“No one left WhiskerMania last year not having a good time,” says Gore. “Most of the attendees were first-timers to the competitive facial hair scene, and many of them told us how they can’t wait for the next one.”

As for competitors, the affiliation with the Facial Hair League means easier registration thanks to an official app that is available for free download. Contests include a pair of mustache categories, five partial beard categories, seven full beard categories, and two fake beard categories.

Gore hopes the number of competitors will rise, thanks in part to the event now being more established and the easy-to-use app.

“All you have to do is walk on stage and present your beard to the judges,” Gore says. “No one will say your facial hair is invalid, and it’s the same price to compete or watch. Also, you could potentiality win one of our awesome trophy belts.”

Admission to WhiskerMania 2 is $10. Doors open at 6 p.m., and competitions start at 8. The event is 21 and over. The Tim Faulkner Gallery is located at 1512 Portland Ave.