LOWELL, Mich. — Lowell is just about a month away from hosting the city's first ever pride event. It's a time to support and learn more about the LGBTQ community. But the kick-off event is causing some controversy.
The Drag Queen Story Hour and performance event has been getting a lot of attention online, so 13 ON YOUR SIDE went to find out more about the people behind the makeup.
Lowell is gearing up for its very first pride event on June 5th. Nicole Lintemuth is the President and Executive Director.
"We've actually had a lot of positive reactions from people," said Lintemuth. "They're excited to see this happening in Lowell."
But the reaction hasn't all been positive, especially when it comes to the opening event, Drag Queen Story Hour.
"They're reading them a story. There's nothing inappropriate about it," said Lintemuth, "they're reading children's stories in fabulous costumes, like how cool is that?"
Lintemuth said change she can be hard for some people but she's hoping this will have a positive impact on the community.
"As long as you're not harming anybody else, go enjoy the things you enjoy," she said, "and if it's not your thing, go find something else to do."
"You don't have to ruin what people enjoy and are having fun with just because it makes you uncomfortable," Lintemuth added.
And for Michigan drag queen, Cherry P., she knows a thing or two about negativity as well.
"There's too much hate in people's hearts," Cherry said, "and we're never going to get rid of that."
"So instead of fueling off of that hate and giving a bigger backlash to ourselves, we're just going to keep doing what we're doing."
Drag Queen B.R.I.T will be reading the books at the event, but Cherry will be part of the performance after.
She said she can't wait to be part of this event.
"I just love seeing these little kids' big smiles across their faces," she said. "When they see this out-of-this-world entertainer in front of them, its just...you can tell you're changing lives."
Beauty Beyond Drag Productions is bringing in the queens for the event, and they already have three special books picked out that are all about inclusion and being kind to others.
Cherry hopes that even through all the negativity, her passion for the event will be much greater.
"At the end of the day I'm doing what I love," Cherry said. "I know I'm making an impact on someone else's life, and if you want to hate on that, that's your prerogative."
She encourages people to open their minds and learn more about the LGBTQ community.
"Talk to a drag queen," she said. "Talk to a gay person. You're going to realize we are no different than anybody else. We just love who we love and love doing what we want to do."
For more information on Lowell Pride 2021, click here.
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