Drag Queen Story Hour goes smoothly, despite threat of protests

RALEIGH (WTVD) -- Drag Queen Story Hour's first foray in Raleigh went off smoothly, despite threats and a small protest.

Drag Queen Story Hour is a movement across the country where drag queens read stories to children. The events are designed to allow children the opportunity to see people who defy gender restrictions.

The movement is supported by the LGBTQ community and its allies, and Medicine Mama's Farmacy in Raleigh hosted the first event of its kind in Raleigh.

"Everybody really enjoyed it." Felisa Brown said. "And we were lucky we didn't have the backlash we expected."

There was a massive crowd of families with children attending the Drag Queen Story Hour on Saturday morning. A sign posted on the window of Medicine Mama's Farmacy read "Y'all Means All," in what was likely a message to the small group of protesters outside the event.

Those protesters said children shouldn't be exposed to men dressed as women.

"The protests were calm. There wasn't any hate speech," Brown said. "I have a 4-year-old and I didn't have to try to explain that. We've talked about it, and at this point in life she loves everybody for everybody, doesn't know that there are bad things out there."

Inside the shop, parents like Ashley O'Donnell who, when asked why she traveled there on a very hot Saturday said, "To support everything! Equality, literacy. There's really nothing you can hate about it!."

The big crowd made it pretty hot inside during the story hour. Organizers said the large crowd taught them that they should cycle people in and out to keep the air moving efficiently in future events.

One child accompanied by Ashley O'Donnell told ABC11, "It was very fun! I got to speak with the drag queens---I love Dr. Seuss!"

But Michele Morrow, another mother who watched the stories read to kids inside told us, "Everybody's created in God's image, everybody has a gift and a talent and a reason. But it feels like this is pursuing an agenda. To just make a conversation about sexuality, or gender, to children who aren't able to handle it."

"You have the right to believe what you believe. We love you, no matter what. Everybody's welcome here. Let's all be friends," Brown said.
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