PITTSBURGH – They’re trying to keep a stiff upper lip in Missouri, but the ruggedly handsome truth is the American Mustache Institute is relocating from St. Louis to Pittsburgh.
The Mustache Institute released the news Friday morning at a City Hall news conference. The group calls itself the world’s only facial hair advocacy and research organization.
Pittsburgh City Councilwoman Theresa Kail-Smith jokingly said that attracting the Mustache Institute is a significant win “from an economic development and good looks standpoint.” She said that the institute received no tax breaks to make the move.
Pittsburgh resident Dr. Adam Paul Causgrove, the new president of the Mustache Institute, said the city has a rich history of “accommodating the sexually dynamic Mustached American lifestyle dating back to the days of Rocky Bleier, John Stallworth and Willie Stargell.” Those are all Pittsburgh sports figures from the 1970s.
Causgrove, who was dressed in colorfully patterned bellbottoms and a lab coat, didn’t directly respond to a question about what the phrase “sexually dynamic Mustached American lifestyle” means.
But Causgrove added that he’s “not entirely sure” how the move will play out over time. He said that America historically was a heavily mustached society but that after World War II a clean-shaven look became more popular, and mustache wearers suffered “discrimination” except for a brief renaissance in the 1970s.
Causgrove said Pittsburgh also will now host the annual “Stache Bash” charity event, starting in October. He noted that the institute purposefully uses humor to spread its message.