Backlash forces one NJ library to cancel Drag Queen Story Hour
Despite backlash over a Drag Queen Story Hour in Warren County prompting the event's cancellation, the program continues to gain popularity across New Jersey.
A Drag Queen Story Hour was on the June calendar for the Warren County Library Northeast Branch in Independence Township but was cancelled last month after two days of public complaints, as reported by Lehigh Valley Live.
The library branch manager said the event was scheduled as a way to acknowledge June as Pride Month.
According to the Story Hour website, the concept began as drag queens reading stories to children in libraries in San Francisco. The organization's mission is to capture "the imagination and play of the gender fluidity of childhood and gives kids glamorous, positive, and unabashedly queer role models."
Drag queens are performers, most often men, who usually portray outlandish or exaggerated female characters. A staple of gay bars, drag queens have in recent years enjoyed mainstream recognition with shows like "RuPaul's Drag Race" on VH1.
North Jersey drag queen Harmonica Sunbeam hosted a Drag Queen Story Hour on June 12 at the Bloomfield Public Library and has done similar events for the past two years across the state, including in Newark, Jersey City, Maplewood, Princeton and Fanwood.
Another Drag Queen Story Hour is set for 1 p.m. Saturday, June 29, at Hoboken Public Library.