Affirmations Hosts its Own Ferndale Pride Drag Queen Story Hour

BTL Staff
By | 2019-05-29T16:03:18-04:00 May 29th, 2019|Entertainment, Features, Ferndale, Neighborhoods|

As LGBTQ people and their allies make their way to Ferndale Pride this Saturday, June 1, they can look forward to not only adult-specific events but family oriented ones as well. Perhaps most notably, this year, the Affirmations LGBTQ community center is hosting a Drag Queen Story Hour from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. Geared toward encouraging youth to read and be themselves, the event was the idea of wives Sonny Stewart and Adira Elham who have put on similar ones in their former home of Florida.
“We saw an ad on Facebook for a Drag Queen Story Hour that had started somewhere else, so we decided to reach out to the gentleman that started it all. We asked him did he have a chapter in St. Petersburg, in Tampa or in Florida period, or if he had one in Michigan. He said he didn’t, so we asked him if we could be a part of it,” Stewart said. “He gave us some information on how he normally screens his drag queens as far as their background checks, training and the basic management of the children in terms of the activities and things of that nature. And with us being teachers we said, ‘OK, we can take the ball and run with it.’”
Stewart said that at the Florida events turnout was great and the selected queens would read stories like “Julián Is a Mermaid” by Jessica Love — the book scheduled for the Affirmations event — to the children. To fill up the entire story time hour, each event was equipped with children’s activities after the book was over like coloring. The upcoming June 1 event will include a rock wall for kids to climb after reading.
Stewart said that if this event goes well she hopes that there will be the possibility of making it a monthly occurrence at the center.
“It’s a great idea and great concept and, honestly, I think with Drag Queen Story Hour it allows the children to see that, ‘Hey, I can be me. I don’t have to live in a bubble or in a world all in my head. There are other people out here [like me]’” Stewart said. “That was the biggest thing we were trying to get across and the reason that we even looked into it even further was because we had several students in Florida who were in that transitional period where they’re trying to find themselves — and it’s not like we’re talking middle school or high school, we’re talking elementary school kids here. So, we figured it would also be a way to help the kids feel more included and not feel that they have to hide who they are.”
To find out more about the event go to the event’s Facebook page at gaybe.am/AB.

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BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 25th anniversary.